But for one Eagle woman, it's horses, eleven of them.
And Nancy Fuller almost lost every one in the highway 16 fire last month.
"It was pretty intimidating," said Fuller. "I wasn't here for the fire. But seeing it from a distance, I became hysterical."
Fuller had been dining in Eagle when lightning sparked the blaze. She tried to get back to the horses at her 80-acre Broken Ridge Ranch, but police held her back from the inferno.
"At that time, I took off running to the first fireman I saw and hysterically told him there were 11 horses up here," she recalled.
Fire crews made a stand at the stables and saved all the horses as well as the ranch itself.
Fuller feels a relief she can't describe -- and a sense of guilt.
"As far as seeing my horses every day, I'm asking them for forgiveness because I know what they went through," she said. "They're getting a lot of grain and carrots."
But when we pointed out she didn't start the fire, that it wasn't her fault, she replied: "I know it wasn't my fault. But it's my job to protect them."
In the end, the horses were protected, protected by firefighters Nancy Fuller believes were as swift and true as guardian angels.