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Sanctuary Tails



News from behind Farm Sanctuary's barn doors



Updated: 2012-05-18T16:41:59-04:00

 



We're Expecting! Part 2

2012-05-18T16:41:52-04:00

By Susie Meet Our Mothers Just two weeks ago, a small herd of cattle arrived at the New York Shelter in horrible condition. The five adults and two calves were all starving and incredibly frightened after suffering severe neglect on...



We're Expecting!

2012-05-12T22:59:42-04:00

By Susie That’s right! We’ve been busy taking care of more than 60 animals we rescued last month from a horrifying case of extreme neglect in Western New York. Much to our surprise, two of the emaciated girls are actually...



Getting to Know Them

2012-04-05T13:37:36-04:00

By Tara Tara Oresick, formerly the manager of our New York Shelter, recently became the director of our Northern California Shelter. During my time as an intern, caregiver and shelter manager at the New York Shelter, I had the good...



The Ghosts in Our Machine

2012-03-27T17:47:16-04:00

Jo-Anne McArthur and Orlando By Susie I often meet artists who are passionate about animal causes, and I love introducing them to the animals who call Farm Sanctuary home. Over the last year or so, we’ve been especially fortunate to... Jo-Anne McArthur and Orlando By Susie I often meet artists who are passionate about animal causes, and I love introducing them to the animals who call Farm Sanctuary home. Over the last year or so, we’ve been especially fortunate to get to know filmmaker Liz Marshall, and I want to share her upcoming project, THE GHOSTS IN OUR MACHINE, with you. Ghosts, as we often call it, is a documentary that follows the work of photographer and animal advocate Jo-Anne (Jo) McArthur, and it features some Farm Sanctuary residents. Here’s what Liz had to say when I asked about her work and Jo’s: Susie: What is THE GHOSTS IN OUR MACHINE? Liz: Well, with the exception of our cats and dogs and a few wild and stray species within our day-to-day living environments, we primarily encounter animals as food, clothing, research, and entertainment.  We don’t fully realize how and where our lives intersect with animals, and that makes these animals “ghosts” in our modern world. THE GHOSTS IN OUR MACHINE is a feature-length film that illuminates the lives of these “ghosts” — individual animals, hidden from our view, living within or rescued from the consumer-driven machine. Through the heart and photographic lens of animal rights protagonist Jo-Anne McArthur, we become intimately familiar with a small cast of animal characters. These individuals represent just a few of the countless animals we too often unknowingly affect in devastating ways. We hear from a spectrum of voices about the cognitive and emotional complexity of animals and about globalized animal industries — scientists, doctors, and industry representatives also contribute to the story. Filmmaker Liz Marshall with Fanny Susie: How did you and Jo decide to work together on this project? Liz: Working with Jo is a natural fit since we are both longtime documentarians committed to social justice.  Jo’s photographic body of work, We Animals, initially inspired me, and then I quickly realized it would make an interesting story to feature Jo-Anne as the main human subject of a film. I approached Jo in early 2009 about the possibility of collaborating on a feature documentary, but it wasn't until later in 2010 that things fell into place. In this project, Jo’s lens is an intimate, honest portal into the lives of these “ghosts,” and she is at a critical juncture in her own activist–photographer career. While Jo's work is celebrated within the worldwide animal rights community, it’s a treasure not known to a wider audience.  The animals’ stories involve struggle, and Jo’s does too. Part of the story follows Jo as she works with her photo agency in New York City to pitch her work to mainstream publications. Her work is happening at a time when issues pertaining to animal rights are in the public eye — there is a groundswell of consumer interest in health and compassion. But, while we’re seeing these issues gain a foothold in popular culture, the animal rights movement, itself, is often misunderstood and marginalized. People still do not want to “see” how their consumer behavior affects billions of animals. The film reflects this wave of consciousness and conflict and is also part of it. Fanny, Cocoa, Meg, Sammy and Frankie Susie: How did your connection with Farm Sanctuary come about? Liz: We (Ghosts Media) are so excited about our growing relationship with Farm Sanctuary. My introduction to the sanctuary was a very magical, unforgettable visit in 2004. It naturally inspired one of the stories featured in the film: the rescue and rehabilitation of Fanny and Sonny. This story highlights the realities of the dairy and veal industries and the very special work that Farm Sanctuary does. Jo is a close friend of Farm Sanctu[...]



Going to California

2012-03-22T14:46:30-04:00

By Tara Tara Oresick, formerly the manager of our New York Shelter, recently became the director of our Northern California Shelter. My journey to Farm Sanctuary’s Northern California Shelter began more than three years ago and almost three thousand miles... By TaraTara Oresick, formerly the manager of our New York Shelter, recently became the director of our Northern California Shelter.  My journey to Farm Sanctuary’s Northern California Shelter began more than three years ago and almost three thousand miles away. In September 2008, I visited Farm Sanctuary’s New York Shelter in Watkins Glen. I was already a vegetarian and had begun to learn more about the egg and dairy industries. Meeting the shelter’s animals sealed the deal for me: I became a vegan. What really did it was encountering the elderly cattle in the shelter’s special needs herd. I had always been so opposed to veal and had never eaten beef in my life, but suddenly I was faced with a visceral illustration of the connection between those products and the dairy I was still consuming. Here I was meeting 20-year-old Holstein cows, who in the industry would have been deemed “spent” and killed for ground beef by the time they were three or four years old. And those years would have been full of the misery of confinement, the exhaustion of constant milk production, and the grief of bearing calves only for them to be immediately taken away. I was also meeting magnificent adult Holstein steers, who in the industry would have been killed as babies for veal. The one-two punch of that trip was this: I recognized these animals as individuals with their own, wonderful personalities, and I also had to confront the fact that, as much as I said I loved animals and thought my diet was aligned with my beliefs, by continuing to eat eggs and dairy, I was supporting something I was completely against. It was realizing that, for every animal at Farm Sanctuary, there were so many more who would never be seen as anything more than commodities. I knew I couldn’t contribute to that exploitation anymore. And more than that, I knew I wanted to provide comfort to farm animals with my own hands.  By the end of the year, I had quit my teaching job in Rochester, NY, (where I had grown up and earned my Masters in Inclusive Education) and began an internship at the New York Shelter. The work was hard, but I loved it. This was the job for me. When my internship ended, I became a caregiver. About two years later, I became the shelter manager. When the opportunity to direct the Northern California Shelter arose, I took it. As sad as I was to leave the New York Shelter and the animals and people who had taught me so much, I was also excited to embark on the next leg of my journey. As I settle into a new home, a new climate, a new position, and new responsibilities, I’m grounded by what remains the same: I’m still helping animals with my own hands, every day. Yep, this is the job for me. [...]



Introducing Farm Sanctuary’s Animal Acres

2012-03-21T12:00:07-04:00

By Susie Last year, we expanded our rescue and refuge network with the addition of a shelter in Acton, CA, just outside of Los Angeles. Now named Farm Sanctuary’s Animal Acres, this facility is currently home to 69 chickens, seven...



Remembering Hildy

2012-03-19T15:01:37-04:00

By Susie Prevalent in our society are some deep misconceptions about turkeys: that they lack intelligence, that they don’t have personalities, that there can be no kinship between humans and these animals who appear so very different from us. For...



Sanctuary Animals at Play

2012-02-27T15:02:33-05:00

By Susie Scribbles, William, and Harry have been charming visitors with their playful and sweet personalities. Check out the videos below to get a short peek at what their days are like living at sanctuary. Thank you for helping to...



Rescued Calves Recovering Nicely - An Update on Tinsel and Holly

2012-01-17T16:57:34-05:00

By Susie It was a cold winter’s day in late December when we rescued Holly and Tinsel from a stockyard auction. Because they were too sick to stand, they were left for dead on the auction house floor, yet they...



Remembering Kevin

2011-11-11T12:01:20-05:00

By Susie He had a moo like a foghorn. It would sound again and again as he climbed the hill to fresh pasture, summoning his herd. You could hear it everywhere on the shelter in Watkins Glen. When Kevin arrived...