Any disaster is terrifying. There is seldom time to consider options, decisions must often be made in the moment. Those decisions often mean the difference between life and death. Her instinct to seek higher ground certainly saved her life. Leaf, a 9-year-old miniature mare was found on a roof Monday in western Japan. Days of torrential rain caused severe flooding in the area, forcing many to flee their homes.
A rescue team from Peace Winds Japan, a nonprofit engaged in disaster-relief activities, discovered Leaf while en route to an evacuation shelter. While considering how to lower the mare from the roof, she slipped and fell 2 meters to the ground. Fortunately she escaped serious injury.

Staff from the farm where Leaf and her foal, Earth, live were compelled to release the horses as flood waters rose Friday evening. The mare is currently being cared for at a farm not affected by the flood. Evacuees stop by daily to feed her carrots and cabbage while the search for Earth continues.

The search continues for Leaf’s foal Earth.

Leaf works as a therapy animal at Life town Mabi an aged care facility in Kakehashi.

Photography Courtesy Peace Winds Japan