Welcome back faithful readers! I am so excited to tell you about the fun trip I made last weekend to Grass Valley and Nevada City to visit Animal Place, a 600 acre sanctuary for farm animals.
Grass Valley is about a 3 hour drive from Santa Rosa, passing through Davis and Sacramento. I wanted to visit the sanctuary to attend a special event they were hosting for this year’s Great American Meatout, hosted by FARM USA. It is the 30th anniversary this year of the Meatout! The purpose of the Meatout is to “…raise awareness of the benefits of eating vegan: helping animals, achieving great health, and saving the planet.” (from the Meatout website).
One of the most important parts of the sanctuary is their new Museum about Factory Farming. They have made human size versions of pig gestation crates and chicken battery cages. Here is me in the human gestation crate. Some female pigs are kept kept in a continuous cycle of pregnancy and nursing in order to produce more ‘bacon’. They live in these gestation crates for the greater part of 3-5 years (they get put into slightly larger “farrowing crates” to nurse their young for 2-4 weeks instead of the natural 12 weeks, and then are put back into the gestation crates to be impregnated again). They cannot even turn around in the gestation crates and they live on concrete floors in warehouses their entire lives. Animal Place is taking these out on the road to raise awareness about factory farming, which I think is fab.
Animal Place has two famous residents, Mr. G and Jellybean. I was really looking forward to meeting them! Here is their story, if you are interested:
Sadly, during the Meatout, Jellybean was separated from Mr. G and the rest of the goats because with all the excitement she was ‘getting too frisky’. She was not impressed, and periodically would stage a very loud protest! I managed to catch her at the end of one of her passionate entreaties for freedom.
However, in between her efforts to be reunited with Mr. G, she was kind enough to say hello to all of her fans:
Mr. G on the other hand (in the foreground, below) seemed happy and relaxed enough where he was. I guess now that he knows Jellybean is nearby he can chill no matter what. Check out his rockin’ beard!
Other highlights of the visit (aside from the free vegan food, of course!!!!) were Aidan the super friendly sheep and kicking back with the turkeys (I ❤ turkeys!!!).
This is Verna, a pygmy goat that Animal Place rescued from some evil people who let her suffer for 18 hours in labor. Her ‘owners’ were willing to shoot her but not to take her to vet. If they had taken her to the vet earlier, the kid would have survived. This is what happens when animals are treated as property. Animal Place rushed her to the vet and paid for her C-section and ongoing medical care. She is isolated from the other goats until she is fully healed. You can read more about her story (including another video) and donate to her medical care here.
The cows were so popular, I didn’t manage to get a cuddle, as there was a queue to get in for an audience with them. I did manage to shoot this brief video though of a lucky lady being nuzzled by a young cow.
And in case you haven’t seen enough, here is one last video of more pics from my visit! Enjoy!
What a super fun day! Thank you so much to Animal Place for organizing it all!