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September 2011 newsletter


Information on LAR and related classes, as well as speaking engagements/conferences, and requests for classes. For a complete list of classes, visit www.saveyourhorse.com/wholearn.htm


Information on LAR and related classes, as well as speaking engagements/conferences, and requests for classes. For a complete list of classes, visit www.saveyourhorse.com/wholearn.htm

NOTE TO INSTRUCTORS: Please submit your new classes at the end of each month to be included in the next month's newsletter. I will send out a monthly notice a week or so before the newsletter is due. I would appreciate it if you would send in your class schedules, along with contact information, at that time. Thank you. ALSO: You are welcome to send in your class lists and I will send out a notice to each student inviting them to subscribe to the newsletter



North Strabane Fire Dept., Canonsburg, PA (Just south of Pittsburg). LAR Awareness for First Responders, and Save Your Horse! A Safety Seminar for Horse Owners. Those that attend the seminar will receive a Certificate of Attendance for the purpose of reimbursements or to forward to your equine insurance carrier. Call 724-745-1010, ext. 333 or email ed.childers@nstfd.org


TAR incorporates water and flood rescue techniques with animal behavior
LAR training by D&J Fox: www.largeanimalrescue.com
TLAER training is provided by Dr. Tomas and Dr. Rebecca Gimenez, and is available at www.tlaer.org/TLAER_Schedule.html

Sept. 21-24 RSPCA NSW Conference, Dr. Rebecca Gimenez, speaker.Sydney, AUSTRALIA

Sept. 24-25 TLAER Large Animal Emergency Rescue trainers' workshop.Hawkesbury, NSW, AUSTRALIA Contact: Anthony Hatch NSW FIRE RESCUE anthony.hatch@fire.nsw.gov.au or Sonya Hatch SES at sonlee@tpg.com.au

Sept 30-Oct 1 TLAER Awareness course open to all: Horse SA, University of Adelaide, AUSTRALIA. Contact Julie Fieldler horsesa@horsesa.asn.au

Oct 22-23 TLAER Awareness, MSU Campus, MS Contact Carla L. Huston, Huston@cvm.msstate.edu

Oct. 24-26 TLAER Operations, Raymond, MS Contact Carla L. Huston, Huston@cvm.msstate.edu or Beth Adcock MART beth@mdac.state.ms.us or Elmo Collum MSU-ES, CMREC elmoc@ext.msstate.edu

Oct 28-30 TLAER Operations, WACO, TX Contact Jonna Johnson, horsebuddy3@yahoo.com or Ben Buchanan, bbuchanan@bveh.com or Jennifer Garrettson, jgarretson@mclennan.edu

NOV 7-11 TLAER - SPECIAL for WSPA - Bogata, COLOMBIA Contact Dr.Mariana Recalde Marianarecalde@wspa-suramerica.org

DEC 7-9 TLAER Operations - Gray, GA Contact Dr. Rebecca Gimenez directly delphiacres@hotmail.com

Feb 4-5, 2012 TLAER Awareness, JAX, FL Contact Elizabeth Maitland, lizziescritters@yahoo.com

JAN / FEB (exact dates to be announced) TLAER Awareness, Southwest Ranches, FL contact Asst. Chief Leslie Kastner jdkpa@aol.com


"Large Animals in the News"


Michelle Melaragno, TLAER AI from Maine – was live on THE HORSE radio show

Susan Krider (Greenville, TX) is donating again! Susan recently ordered a book from Michelle and wrote, "One [previously ordered] I gave to our local saddle club to add to their library, and the other got borrowed and disappeared. I ordered this one because our saddle club is having the fire chief of our local fire dept. come talk to us on barn fire safety and prevention - there have been a rash of deadly fires lately and we thought it would be a good topic. When talking to him about this, he mentioned that they are frequently (we're a rural area) being called out to pull horses out of overturned trailers, out of ditches, culverts, etc. and I thought - what a great gift to give him for talking to us. Our club recently bought a sling for area use, is hosting a seminar, and we are bringing in a clinician from out-of-state to teach it. We're inviting all the area horse people and reps from all the local fire departments." Thanks Susan!

NCTLAER is no longer at aol.com. Please change your contact info. Thanks. NCTLAER@hotmail.com

Chandra Davis of TN association of Rescue Squads in Hornbeak Tennessee is writing an article to include LAR for a magazine. Go girl!


http://www.local10.com/news/28835043/detail.html A FL training article

http://www.thehorse.com/ViewArticle.aspx?ID=18677 Import Center article

http://www.dvidshub.net/news/74460/firefighters-conduct-marsh-rescue-training Mud training

John Marsh says: Loudoun Co EMS has approved TARVA for county service, so we are up for approval at VA SART this month. Don't anticipate any problems there. Answering final questions for 501c3 application and we have our first team training event scheduled for 9/24.

http://www.5newsonline.com/news/kfsm-accident-backs-up-sb-traffic-on-i540-near-winslow-20110701,0,5258761.story UK Fire service invests in training equipment

http://www.thehorse.com/ViewArticle.aspx?ID=18706 Training article from MSU


An interesting mix of agencies and individual stakeholders met in Miami, FL at the Miami Animal Import Center.

This is the first joint disaster exercise of its kind (a Federal, State and Local collaboration) with animals as the focus of the emergency and was conceived in response to past incidents. This collaboration is expected to clarify lines of authority and jurisdiction for the various agencies that would be involved in a scenario such as this.

In the introduction - Dr. Francisco Collazo-Mattei, the Area Veterinarian in Charge from USDA - APHIS for Florida, said the background of this tabletop scenario was being based loosely on something that occurred 20+ years ago where 70 cattle died of heat stroke on a plane before they could be removed. Dr. Elizabeth Enciso focused on the threats to humans on the aircraft by the animals - her emphasis is on preparedness, training and building response capabilities. Captain Jeff Strickland gave an overview of these incidents from the perspective of the Fire-Rescue department, who were prime movers setting up this week of training with the players involved. He mentioned their justification - recent experiences have demonstrated the need for this type of training and pre-coordination.

This was a week-long training which included two days of presentations on Technical Large Animal Emergency rescue techniques, and included a review of what went well and what could be improved for the next time an exercise of this type is done - especially if shared with the other animal import facilities around the USA (California, New York).

This exercise demonstrated that Miami International Airport and their agency and private partners have set a high standard for animal health and humane care, and have already surmounted many of the obstacles expected when responding to emergencies of all types, despite the confounding factors presented by the dangers of working around planes and heavy equipment, coordination exercises of this type are key to maintaining the level of communication and pre-disaster mitigation for a world class facility. Kudos to Florida for setting the standard very high and committing their personnel, planning time and resources to such an event.


http://www.columbian.com/news/2011/aug/09/four-hour-struggle-cowlitz-county-firefighters-res/ Rescue in WA

http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/lanow/2011/08/orange-county-firefighters-rescue-stuck-horse.html Trapped in hole and freed

http://germanherald.com/news/Germany_in_Focus/2011-08-10/802/Pony_And_Trapped and

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2024460/Thats-pony-trapped-Unfortunate-animal-cut-free-getting-trapped-inside-tractor-tyre.html Great pictures!

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-dorset-14450500 Horse rescued from unauthorized swim in pool

http://www.coolestone.com/media/2196/Jaws-of-Life-Used-To-Rescue-Baby-Fawn/ Fawn rescue

http://www.ktla.com/news/landing/ktla-norco-horse-rescue,0,4071593.story Storm spooked horse rescued with Jaws of Life

http://www.epworthbells.co.uk/news/isle-news/horse_stuck_in_dyke_at_epworth_1_3618673 Rescued by owner

http://www.palmbeachpost.com/news/firefighters-rescue-former-racehorse-stuck-in-melbourne-pool-1626701.html Helps to have training and the right equipment!

http://www.cbs19.tv/story/15299738/llama-rescued-from Llama rescued from mud. Video and pictures

http://www.myfoxhouston.com/dpp/news/local/110815-happy-ending-for-horse-stuck-in-mud Horse rescued from mud


http://www.appeal-democrat.com/news/horse-109160-highway-chp.html Horse hit then run over

http://bit.ly/owTlQX Horse breaks legs after falling from trailer

http://www.wbir.com/news/article/179046/2/Two-accused-of-hitting-woman-killing-horse Two cars hit horse

http://www.pressconnects.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2011110815016 Over half cattled killed when driver flips truck

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-hampshire-14558136 Man thrown from buggy and killed

http://www.koat.com/r/28896515/detail.html Horse survives after going through trailer floor

http://www.bracknellnews.co.uk/news/ascot/articles/2011/08/01/53315-horse-dies-after-trailer-topples-over/ Horse dies of injuries

http://www.horsetalk.co.nz/news/2011/07/213.shtml Olympic horse dies of injuries

http://www.thedestinlog.com/news/truck-39256-nwfdn-county-walton.html Horses die when tire blows

http://www.tri-cityherald.com/2010/12/23/1303048/crash-two-car-accident-kills-horse.html Horse killed; owner hospitalized

http://fredericksburg.com/News/FLS/2010/092010/09152010/575413 LAR training helps in crash

http://www.5newsonline.com/news/kfsm-accident-backs-up-sb-traffic-on-i540-near-winslow-20110701,0,5258761.story Horses ok

http://www.sunherald.com/2011/08/31/3391381/5-dead-in-six-vehicle-pileup.html 5 humans, 1 horse die


http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-norfolk-14396288 horse falls on girl and dies; girl dies


http://www.oregonlive.com/portland/index.ssf/2011/08/horse_trainer_killed_by_kickin.html Trainer killed by horse kick

http://www.standard.net/stories/2011/08/13/layton-mom-adjusting-paraplegia Woman paralyzed

http://www.wtvr.com/news/wtvr-hanover-girl-killed-in-freak-horse-accident-20110831,0,295455.story Girl kicked in face, dies



http://heraldnet.com/article/20110810/NEWS01/708109799/1047/COMM0608 Several horses die

http://www.seattlepi.com/news/article/WA-barn-fire-kills-horses-1814009.php Horses killed

http://www.yourhoustonnews.com/woodlands/news/article_667c6974-c2bd-11e0-a855-001cc4c002e0.html But a live fire requires a response in seconds to minutes; not minutes to hours.

http://beaconnews.suntimes.com/6902973-417/firefighters-tally-barn-blaze-numbers.html This is a FASCINATING summary of the amount of logistics that it takes to make an effort this monumental.

http://www.registercitizen.com/articles/2011/08/01/news/doc4e376c796d546168573771.txt Person injured trying to save horses...

http://www.pnwlocalnews.com/north_sound/arl/news/127469523.html Multiple horse deaths

http://www.khou.com/home/Search-continues-for-horse-that-vanished-after-stable-fire--127616118.html Horses killed; one still missing

http://www.newspostleader.co.uk/news/local/community_rallies_after_fire_hits_farm_1_3687173 Horse equipment lost, no lives lost

http://www.upi.com/Top_News/World-News/2011/08/31/Heroic-teen-loses-own-horse-in-barn-fire/UPI-38251314795715/ Girl saves several horses, but loses her own in fire


Nothing here


http://www.animaltransportationassociation.org/ If you transport animals you may want to join this org.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K2GzjjiiFBw Great Toyota commercial out of NZ. Thanks, MaryAnne


http://usda.gov/wps/portal/usda/usdahome?contentid=2011%2F08%2F0343.xml&contentidonly=true Rebecca says: Please see this information - and post your comments on the rule. PLEASE RESEARCH IT FIRST! We need some way to be able to track diseases in horses - and this seems a fair and enforceable way to do it.

http://www.thehorse.com/ViewArticle.aspx?ID=17749 THE HORSE article on fire prevention. But what about sprinklers? http://www.thehorse.com/ViewArticle.aspx?ID=18787 THE HORSE article -- when evacuation is not an option

http://timestranscript.canadaeast.com/lifetimes/article/1432528 Article on Przewalski's horse

http://newsok.com/remington-park-racetrack-crew-has-frequent-tense-moments/article/3595432?custom_click=lead_story_title Learn about starting gate crew

http://www.gaequine.org/ Economic impact in Georgia

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DLvT2AiDpMo&feature=player_embedded Friend of Rebecca's did this PSA.


http://www.thehorse.com/ViewArticle.aspx?ID=18733 Preparing for hurricanes

http://www.ncagr.gov/markets/livestock/horse/EquineDisasterResponseAlliancePartners.htm North Carolina disaster response site

http://www.facebook.com/notes/bluebonnet-equine-humane-society/a-hard-look-at-the-challenges-facing-many-rescues/10150261165899068 , A good read on horse rescues. When are factory farms going to stop mass producing horses?





Rebecca Gimenez was born in central Florida (last century!) and had the wondrous privilege of being able to ride her horses just about as much as she wanted to within a 5 mile radius of her home from the time she was about12 years old. Back then it did not look like today. Swimming in the lakes, riding up and down dirt roads and sand hills, racing her friends on their horses, playing hide and go seek on horseback, learning to jump bareback - horses were her life. Those horses had minimal manners but they were ridden almost every day and usually at a rate of speed that they liked - FAST!

Occasionally she saw a horse or person get a minor injury - but she remained blissfully unaware of the tragedies between people and large animals that happened all around her. That was something that she only heard about in admonitions from her parents, or quiet whispers around school. And what do parents know when you are a teenager? Apparently a lot - her mother is still riding one of those horses at the ripe old age of 32 (the horse) and 72 (the mother) in a halter with rope reins, and her father is a passionate natural horsemanship student as well.

Traumatically separated from horses while she attended college for a BS in Biology at Wofford in Spartanburg, SC (the wisest thing her parents could have ever done!) when she graduated she purchased her very own leopard appaloosa. Back then a horse that the entire barn was afraid of because he was a renowned runaway, refused to load in a trailer, hated vaccinations, dewormer and a hose, was horrifically barn sour, and had kicked both the farrier and the veterinarian - still brought about $600. She was delighted with her new mount - somehow managed to get him home - purchased some books and videos on natural horsemanship with Lyons then Parelli (when nobody knew those names in 1992) and sallied forth to learn from Mr. Brownstone. They did everything together, won ribbons, and amazed other riders with his feats of strength and agility. (Years later when he died in 2006 she had his hide tanned and he hangs on the wall in her house - to remind her of how much he taught her that she didn't know she needed to learn.) Years went by - in which she purchased a magazine with a girlfriend called "Equine and Bovine MagazineTM" as editor and freelance writer; worked as a breeding manager at a large Walking horse farm; and continued to pursue her expanding equine knowledge thru various educational outlets, mentors - especially by practicing on students and friends. Also - she enjoyed her military career in the US Army Reserves, working thru the ranks, eventually getting deployed in 2006 to Kuwait and Iraq, (see attached letter that she wrote to friends and family before leaving for her combat tour) and is currently serving with HQ, US SOUTHCOM in Miami, FL.

In 1994 she decided to pursue a graduate degree at Clemson University - where she met her future husband and partner in TLAER. Working at a 150 horse student research and teaching farm producing numerous foals each year, she was exposed for the first time to the horrific injuries, disease processes, and realities of emergencies that horses and their people could get themselves into. Over 4 years, she saw just about every worst case scenario that could happen (trapped recumbent, severe laminitis, colicing, death, euthanasia, nasty injuries and lacerations, dystocia, orphaned foals, hung in the fence, killed by lightning, stuck in a trailer, etc.) Dr. Tomas Gimenez was her advisor - they quickly realized that there were many things that they could teach each other about horse anatomy, physiology and behavior, as well as learning together about responding better to disaster and emergencies with large animals. (see Tomas' focus at this link...) When they realized that no one else seemed to have most of the information they sought - their research and development began in earnest. In 1997 Rebecca graduated with a PhD in animal physiology, and began a teaching career in Biology, Immunology and Microbiology at Anderson College. By 1999 they traveled out to meet the only other couple involved in teaching large animal rescue in California (John and Deb Fox) and learn from their successes.

Rebecca's contribution to TLAER TM has been her keen observation skills and interest in horse behavior - she enjoyed teaching her horses to do things that other people considered crazy or difficult - like lying down, coming on command to their name, being calm about being mobbed by people, getting tied up with webbing and ropes to be lifted off the ground with no sedation, and standing still for difficult procedures (vaccination, deworming, etc.) It wasn't long until she was featuring the use of live animals for many of the demonstrations - students learn on some wooden and plastic mannequins, then move outside to put them into practical use with live animals - including horses and two trained llamas - Dexter and Levo.

She has continued to gather ideas, techniques and procedures that firefighters and veterinarians all over the world were employing to various levels of success- then showcase the variety of tactics available to students in their courses, and share her knowledge with anyone who stands still long enough to listen. Although divorced in 2008, Tomas and Rebecca maintain their business partnership in TLAER, Inc. and together they teach courses and work together to push, prod and pull these concepts into greater understanding for owners, students, emergency responders, and practitioners. They realized that this was a lot bigger than them - and they work to push it forward with a very small but hardworking contingent of assistant instructors who believe in what they are trying to do.

Rebecca is an active speaker at various venues from international to local, her passion for the subject is impossible to miss. She distributes information to interested people related to these issues via her constant TLAER FB page postings, freelance articles, radio and television interviews; contributes to numerous discussions on blogs, posts her opinions on a myriad of newspaper and television reports of TLAER rescues (successful and not).

In 2006 thru 2008 - to put these TTPs (tactics, techniques, procedures) and SOPs (standard operating guidelines) into the hands of more people, she wrote 14 chapters and edited the other six chapter authors to produce the first textbook on the subject with Tomas and Kimberly May of the AVMA.

Today, Rebecca happily fills her schedule with speaking engagements, TLAER trainings, and working and playing with her horses on a farm that she and her significant other recently purchased in Macon, GA. His six year old daughter is a joyful young lady that is learning to ride even now - and you can be assured that they have great plans for that little girl to be a world famous scientist and horse lover.

At 6'2" and large framed, she is not shy to be the more vocal face of Technical Large Animal Emergency Rescue, Inc. She fervently hopes that by the time she retires that large animals will be provided more consistent and safe methods of technical rescue and extrication than they are currently - and that the days of jerking a horse out of an overturned trailer or a cow out of a bog by its tail or head will be nothing but a horrific memory.


If you choose to NOT receive the newsletter, just send me a note at info@saveyourhorse.com and I'll take you off the list. If you have any news, please send to the same place. Or you can just respond to this email.
Michelle Staples

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