Donkey runs to his owner after they survived a wildfire (VIDEO)

As he watched his home burn away, all Daniel Sanchez could do is sit and get his bearings.

It all happened within a few hours. A friend had told Daniel that the fire department was already in position along Highway 12 at Calistoga Road. Daniel knew he had time to warn his neighbors and prepare himself, his wife, and his home.

The fire would break out within three hours.

His wife, Betsy, had already packed up her things and temporarily moved to a friend’s house. Daniel stayed to release four miniature donkeys they provided sanctuary for, and to protect his home.

Daniel and Betsy lived inside a glass house on the 70-acre land they own, which they had turned into an animal sanctuary.

In the sanctuary, four miniature donkeys currently live there while half a dozen emus they saved from slaughter lived there in the past.

On the night of the fire, Daniel went back to their property to release the donkeys.

Because they wanted to be self-reliant, Daniel made preparations in case anything big happened to them, including a wildfire.

They have pressurized water hoses, a 10,000-gallon water tank, and a gas pump to power it when the electricity goes out.

Daniel was ready.

For three hours, Daniel fought the fire that came. He had to fight even if it was just himself. But in the end, the fire proved too strong and he had to walk away to save himself.

Days later, they came back to survey the area. He didn’t care about the millions of dollars worth of damage — all he wanted was for his donkeys to be safe.

They hope their four donkeys were able to get themselves to safety so they can find them.

Together with Sonoma Community Animal Response Team (Sonoma CART), they tried to look for their missing donkeys.

“We lost millions of dollars worth of stuff but the life of the donkeys is what we’re focusing on now and it just goes to show how valuable life is,” Daniel shared. “It’s not about money, materialism. It’s about things that are still possibly alive and trying to save them.”

Daniel, Betsy, and Sonoma CART staff worked together to look for the donkeys.

And they did!

One of the Sonoma CART scouts found Mango, one of the donkeys, and was able to coax her back to the property and reunited with Daniel and Betsy.

“When I did the [donkey] call, I heard the donkey call back and we knew the area where the donkey was at that point,” Daniel recalled.

When Mango saw Daniel, he ran up the hill to him as fast as her little legs could take her.

They were both so happy to see each other. Mango now lives on a nearby farm with a bunch of llamas while Daniel and Betsy recuperate and rebuild their home.

They haven’t had any luck finding the other three donkeys and they hope they’ve found refuge at nearby farms, where they’ll reunite with each other eventually.

Watch the video below to see the touching reunion between Daniel, Betsy, and Mango.

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