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06/24/2014

A Eulogy for Frostie the Snowgoat  »

imageHi everyone. I have very sad news this morning, I just learned that Frostie, the baby goat Edgar’s Mission recently rescued, has passed away. For those of you who have been following Frostie’s story, you know it’s a story about the triumph of a bright little spirit. When Edgar’s Mission rescued Frostie, he had a terrible lice infestation, was severely dehydrated, and had a debilitating condition called joint navel ill. Frostie couldn’t walk on his own, but Edgar’s Mission was determined to save him and they outfitted him with his own wheelchair. Frostie took to the wheelchair like a champ. And, before we knew it, Frostie was walking—or more like dancing!—on his own. 

Like many people, I was taken in by Frostie’s story. I found these two gifs and sent them to everyone I know. I’ve been living off the happy vapors of these gifs for weeks now. I’m sure you can see why:

Frostie in May:
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A few weeks later:
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Sadly, Frostie would only be with us a short time. In the past 24 hours or so, Edgar’s Mission discovered Frostie was sick; not long after, the poor little guy was gone. Turns out our dear Frostie was “riddled with abscesses” along his spinal column. You can read more on Edgar’s Mission’s Facebook page. But they say it was only in his last hours that Frostie was in pain, so at least we know he probably was just as happy as he looked before then. 

I’m hesitant to say Frostie was special, because I imagine that if every little baby goat were given the chance Frostie was, they too would show us just how wonderful they are. But, as should be obvious by now, he definitely touched my heart. So I just want to thank Edgar’s Mission for saving little Frostie and introducing him to the world and I want to let Frostie know, you will be missed, little pal. My hope going forward is that you were able to open at least some hearts and teach people that all animals are worthy of love and kindness, every single last one.

I’m reminded today of one of my favorite poems (and I only have a few). It happens to be about a goat and makes me think of Frostie. I’ll leave you with that:

IT HAPPENS LIKE THIS 

I was outside St. Cecelia’s Rectory
smoking a cigarette when a goat appeared beside me.
It was mostly black and white, with a little reddish
brown here and there. When I started to walk away,
it followed. I was amused and delighted, but wondered
what the laws were on this kind of thing. There’s
a leash law for dogs, but what about goats? People
smiled at me and admired the goat. “It’s not my goat,”
I explained. “It’s the town’s goat. I’m just taking
my turn caring for it.” “I didn’t know we had a goat,”
one of them said. “I wonder when my turn is.” “Soon,”
I said. “Be patient. Your time is coming.” The goat
stayed by my side. It stopped when I stopped. It looked
up at me and I stared into its eyes. I felt he knew
everything essential about me. We walked on. A police-
man on his beat looked us over. “That’s a mighty
fine goat you got there,” he said, stopping to admire.
“It’s the town’s goat,” I said. “His family goes back
three-hundred years with us,” I said, “from the beginning.”
The officer leaned forward to touch him, then stopped
and looked up at me. “Mind if I pat him?” he asked.
“Touching this goat will change your life,” I said.
“It’s your decision.” He thought real hard for a minute,
and then stood up and said, “What’s his name?” “He’s
called the Prince of Peace,” I said. “God! This town
is like a fairy tale. Everywhere you turn there’s mystery
and wonder. And I’m just a child playing cops and robbers
forever. Please forgive me if I cry.” “We forgive you,
Officer,” I said. “And we understand why you, more than
anybody, should never touch the Prince.” The goat and
I walked on. It was getting dark and we were beginning
to wonder where we would spend the night.

-James Tate

Donate to Edgar’s Mission here

05/22/2014

CUTENESS: Baby goat learns to walk with his very own wheels!   »

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Edgar’s Mission, our favorite Aussie farm animal shelter, recently took in little Frostie! Not only did Frostie have a terrible lice infestation, he had joint naval ill:

Joint navel ill is a disease that is seen in very young calves and kid goats and results from an infection entering the body via the umbilical cord soon after birth. The causes are often insufficient or poor quality colostrum (a mother’s immune building first milk) or a dirty and hygienic environment. And in Frostie’s case the bacteria had spread via his bloodstream and settled in the joints of his hind limbs -his joints becoming swollen, hot and painful and rendering him unable to use them. Necessity becoming the Mother of invention as we work to save and enrich the life of our newest little rescue, watch what happens next….

Here’s the video. BREAK OUT THE TISSUES NOW. It’s the cutest effing thing in the world when he takes the first galloping steps: 

Frostie the Snow Goat from Edgar’s Mission Farm Sanctuary.

Are you dead? I’m totally dead!!! In related news, Edgar’s mission is currently holding a “Raising the Roof” funding drive to purchase and outfit their new sanctuary! They keep growing and they want an even bigger and better space to help more animals like sweetie pie Frostie.

They’ve passed their goal but I’m sure they could always use more help, as they seem to be taking in more needy animals all the time. Plus they need funds for their Farm Animal Enrichment Program, which will include a jungle gym for the goats! If you want to contribute, donate here! If everyone who reads this donates just $10, Frostie and friends could have the coolest jungle gym any goat ever hoped for. We can do it!

05/16/2014

5 adorable piglets who are so much more than bacon  »

imageJulia and her piglets! Julia was super abused before she was rescued by Farm Sanctuary, at which point she gave birth to a boatload of adorable piglets!

The pig’s sentience—its status as a non-object capable of suffering—morally trumps my desire to eat a BLT, no matter how much pleasure it gives. No life is worth a sandwich I don’t need. 
-James McWilliams for 
the Atlantic

The mere mention of bacon makes most meat-eaters giggle with glee. It’s basically the pinnacle of American gluttony, decadence, and indifference. It’s not just a food, bacon has become a punchline, yucking it up on Tshirts and memes across the country. Meanwhile, pigs, who are not only smarter than your dog but also emotionally complex, are suffering relentless anguish

According to the National Pork Producers Council, the numbers are reproachful:

Today there are more than 67,000 pork operations compared with nearly 3 million in the 1950s. Farms have grown in size; 53 percent of them now produce 5,000 or more pigs per year. Nearly 21 billion pounds of pork were processed from about 110 million hogs in 2011. A total of 2.3 million metric tons of pork valued at more than $6.3 billion was exported in 2012.

If I can translate that for you: a hundred million pigs are killed a year, and the factory farm industry is booming. That means gestation crates, pollution, disease, and cruelty. 

I know people like the taste of bacon. That’s not a justification for the suffering it causes. Maybe human babies taste great, that’s not a good reason to eat human babies. The “but it tastes good” argument is nothing short of vapid and shallow. You’re choosing sensory pleasure over morals. When is that ever the right way to make decisions?

In conclusion, here are 5 adorable piglets who were rescued from certain death and suffering. These are living beings who deserve more than being someones lunch. Take it away, cutie pies! 

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1. Leon Trotsky

Kicking us off is Leon Trotsky from Edgar’s Mission! Leon was injured at a farm and therefore “useless.” Thankfully, a kind person got Leon to the safety of Edgar’s Mission where he was fitted for his very own training wheels. 

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2. Edgar

This is Edgar! He’s one of those fell-off-the-truck rescue stories. Now he lives at Snooters Farm Sanctuary!

3. Marigold

Here we have Marigold from Animal Place! She’s playing in the straw like a total goofball! Her exact history is unknown, she was found roaming the streets in Sacramento, but they guess she was probably purchased from an auction for backyard slaughter. Not dice!

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4. Stanley

Hello, Stanley! Stanley is all growed up now but this is him getting some belly rubs as a baby. He’s another escapee found running up and down a busy road. Now he lives happily at the Woodstock Farm Animal Sanctuary!

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5. Eric

And of course, we close out with wee Eric from Farm Sanctuary! Eric was left to suffer with a leg injury because the medical attention he needed would cost more than the farmer thought he was worth. We think Eric is worth a gagillion dollars and all piglets are worthy of a happy life without pain!

All of these piglets were intended to be meat on someone’s plate, but thanks to random events, they escaped their grim fate. But most pigs—billions of them—are not so lucky. The overwhelming majority of pigs are still suffering in deplorable conditions. What can you do? Click on any of the shelter links above and donate in the name of your favorite piglet. More ideas? Visit Mercy For Animals. But the best and easiest thing you can do is GO VEG.

Share this list with your friends and spread the message: animals matter!

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