Over Labor Day weekend, I was visiting family in Connecticut and thought it would be a great opportunity to check out a local animal sanctuary. I came across Safe Haven Farm Sanctuary in Poughquag, NY and was excited to embark on a mini road trip! After a couple of wrong turns (thanks for nothing Waze!) we finally arrived at the sanctuary. It is located in a such a beautiful, serene area near the Appalachian Trail. We were warmly greeted by co-founder, Dr. William Crain who proceeded to give us a tour of the grounds.
We arrived mid-afternoon time, just in time to join the resident pigs, Leo and Otis for lunch!
Snacking on some organic greens...nothing but the best!
Leo was purchased in Queens, NY to be a family pet. This would mean he would be living in an apartment...not exactly an ideal situation for a pig. When his family would leave for work, Leo would squeal causing the neighbors to become angry. They insisted that he move out. Fortunately, Safe Haven stepped in and rescued him. No more apartment living for Leo!
Otis was also abandoned in New York City and had to endure some rough conditions but thankfully that is a thing of the past. He is now happily living his life at Safe Haven.
Tours=extra treats for the animals and boy, do they know it! We were introduced to a beautiful horse named Chance. He was found crammed in a holding pen in Pennsylvania in poor condition- his ribs were protruding, his hooves were cracked and he had parasites. He was set to be transported to Canada for slaughter but thankfully, a rescue group saved him and Safe Haven welcomed him to their family with open arms.
In the distance was Chance's friend, Cory. Cory is a miniature horse that lived with a family for 17 years. As the children of the family grew older, they had lost interest in her. They acquired other large horses on their property which left Cory ignored and lonely. The large horses would pick on her resulting in a lot of alone time which led to compulsive behaviors such as overeating and excessive rubbing. As soon as Cory arrived at Safe Haven, she immediately whinnied, saying hello to her new friends and they reciprocated with their own greetings!
Cory now has plenty of welcoming friends to spend her days with!
While we were visiting with Chance and Cory, a couple of the resident goats came up to say hi and get in on the treat action.
As we were taking the tour, walking through the various sections of the sanctuary, there was an overwhelming sense of peace, not only because of the picturesque setting but you could sense how happy the animals are there.
The last stop on the tour was visiting the sheep. Some were a little apprehensive of strangers which makes perfect sense due to the previous abusive conditions they had to endure. Luckily, they are now shown nothing but love and respect, which everyone deserves.
Snacks all around!
There were also two lambs, Satin and Silky. They were born on February 7, 2016 on a production farm where they were to either be used for breeding or sold for meat. They both sustained broken legs because their mom was a bit too rough in trying to get them to stand up. The vet cared for them until they were healed and then called Safe Haven, asking if they could adopt them. Satin and Silky are now able to run around and explore in a safe environment.
At the end of the tour, we met Dr. Ellen Crain, co-founder of the sanctuary. William and Ellen are a such a lovely duo that are changing the lives of many animals; giving them second chances at the lives they deserve. Along the tour, we also met a few of the volunteers whom you can tell genuinely enjoyed being there and caring for the animals.
For the months of September-November, I will be donating 10% of every sale to Safe Haven Farm Sanctuary to support their efforts in all that they do. To learn more about the animals, sanctuary or to donate directly, please visit http://safehavenfarmsanctuary.org/.