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September 2023

Preparedness Heroes in Our Midst

Many people feel overwhelmed, many have stopped listening. Heroes are lauded everywhere, how can we possibly live up to their standards that the media extols every day? We have a simple answer, and even more accessible solution: Find the hero inside you. Do whatever you can that will make a difference to you or someone you love, whether human or any other species. Everyone can be a Preparedness Hero. Cumulatively, it’s the little, everyday actions that will have big and forever impacts. We don’t often see graphic novels or comic books about everyday heroes. But everyone needs to feel like a hero sometime, and everyone can be a hero to someone.

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June 2023

FREE Bi-Lingual Animal Disaster Prep Workshop!

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February 2023

Mid-Winter Safety for Our Animal Companions

It finally rained! A lot. While the recent visit from serial Atmospheric Rivers delivered desperately needed water, they also left us with other mementos that are not so nice. Many of our residents are dealing with the misery of displacement, mountains of debris, the impacts of long power outages, and lengthy lists of repairs to their homes and ranches. Most of us can check off at least one of these, or related effects. As ranchers, my family experienced some frightening and unprecedented flooding, with more than two weeks of sporadic, or no, public utility power. Like every other type of disaster, when we haven’t faced one for a while, it’s always a wake-up call. We prepare year-round, but there are still things we “coulda/shoulda” done better. Unlike prep for wildfires, our flood muscle memory was a bit out of shape. How’s yours?

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November 2022

A Helping of Preparedness with Gratitude for Dessert

Holiday feasts and festivities are right around the corner, and might include travel to, or visits from, family and friends. All good reasons to think about ways to keep our animals safe, healthy, and happy while their humans enjoy themselves. Preparedness is a year-round thing. While we’re understandably focused on readiness for major events, we don’t need to dwell exclusively on disasters! It’s been easy to overlook the “everyday” things when we’re consumed by dealing with big, seemingly endless, catastrophes, but the reality is that most animal (and human) emergencies are the ones that happen suddenly, and often at home or on vacation.

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October 2022

NOTES TO SELF: Looking back on the Fire (and Quakes, and Flood…)

I kept a diary during the October 2017 fires. It was my way of coping, of organizing chaos. I’ve gone back to the diary, reading it from the perspective of 5 years of… a lot, with the idea of looking back to keep moving forward. From the space of 5 years of more fires, earthquake and a Tsunami alert, atmospheric rivers, AND drought, plus pandemic, I wanted to check in with myself. How did my “Fire Diary” observations, fears, and “notes to self” hold up? Answer: Pretty darn well. Takeaways? My family and I were not prepared enough for the enormity, or duration of the fire, evacuations, and recovery. But— we DID have emergency plans in place. And because we did, we —and our animals and property— came through OK. Friends and neighbors, I’d been nagging also told me later that their newly created phone trees and pet go-bags saved lives and helped them ride things out in much better shape than had they not made these preparations. Are we doing it better? You bet!

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