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Colorado Horse Rescue develops 'Uber for horses,' an app to help transport animals during emergencies

"Horse Alert" is aimed at helping ranchers save their four-legged friends
The Colorado Horse Rescue is a nonprofit that developed an app to help rescue animals during emergency situations.
Posted at 2:42 PM, May 31, 2024

LONGMONT, Colo — A Colorado nonprofit has developed an app to streamline the process for transporting animals during an emergency. The Colorado Horse Rescue launched, "HorseAlert" to help save animal and human lives.

“Fires are getting more prevalent in Colorado," said Katherine Gregory, the Colorado Horse Rescue's CEO. "When fires hit, horses can be particularly in danger."

Gregory said they noticed the need after they had to evacuate the rescue's 60 horses during the Marshall and Calwood fires. Most rescues and ranches don't have enough trailers to transport their horses, so they reach out to neighbors for help on social media. Unfortunately, too many people can cause more harm than good.

"They end up blocking roads, they end up blocking first responders, they block other evacuees that are trying to get out," said Gregory.

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After noticing issues with rescue efforts, the nonprofit partnered with Initial Capacity, a software consultancy, to develop "Horse Alert." The app connects horse owners with the exact amount of trailers nearby to transport their horses.

The app is free and available across Colorado. Currently, 660 horses are signed up, but there are only 50 drivers.

"HorseAlert is going to help us get the information we need ahead of time," said Irina Rapport, one of the 50 drivers for HorseAlert.

Irina said the app is safer and smoother way to transport horses. During the Marshall Fire, Rapport often showed up to locations only to find the horses had already been transported, or spent large amounts of time in traffic trying to reach horses in need.

“I personally believe the system is a little broken right now," said Rapport. "We don't know who's been evacuated, from what places and we also don't know what places have how many horses.”

Although the app was only recently launched, Rapport believes it'll be a quicker way to lend her help.

"You can just hook up and go," said Rapport.

To sign up your horse or to sign up to be a driver, visit www.horsealert.org.

Colorado Horse Rescue develops an app to transport animals during emergencies