As the scissors began to surrender to the dense felt that was now the fleece of the gentle Angora doe we had hastily named Julie, we doggedly battled on. Why hastily? Let me explain. Julie was one of 27 of the large herd of Angora goats recently surrendered into our care reaching a crisis point in their welfare. These gentle goats were burdened by more than four years’ worth of fleece (that’s missing over 8 shearings, as Angoras need to be shorn twice a year) and countless parasites (both internal and external), and crippled by overgrown hooves.
It was then we knew Julie simply had to have a name. Taking hers from our team member who had just carried her into the stall, Julian, it was only moments before she gave birth to a sweet and somehow healthy little kid goat we dutifully named Juliet. However, the thick and heavy dreadlocked fleece was now a barrier to the baby reaching her mumma’s awaiting colostrum-filled udder.
With the baby’s cries fuelling our determination to make those darn scissors fulfil their charter, we feverishly worked. While one person held the confused and bewildered Julie, another tried to make fast work through the fleece, while yet another continued to set the stall and ensure food and water would be on hand once our task was complete. No words were needed as we all worked towards the common goal of helping two fellow beings in trouble, a mother and her baby.
It was a truly beautiful feeling, despite the difficulty of our task and the stench of urine that had invaded our nostrils and our clothes, to know our efforts would bring them to a better place. That these two were species apart from ours was no barrier to our kindness, nor should it ever be. For in our common goal of seeking to help those less fortunate than ourselves, we find the greatness of our humanity – these are the things that unite us.
While many may recognize July 4th as America’s famous Independence Day from now on in we will recognize it as Independence Day for Chickens, as history will record it as the first day of Australia’s largest farmed animal rescue. Almost 1,500 laying hens destined for slaughter received a last minute reprieve when a battery hen farmer had a change of heart. Pledging the cages would never again hold a chicken the farmer nervously sought assistance to rehome the hens to safe and loving homes. At first we thought it was some kind of a joke, but meeting with the farmer at a secret location we believed him to be genuine and so on July 4th 2012 Australia’s largest farmed animal rescue began.
Five years on, and while we still celebrate Chicken Independence Day here at Edgar’s Mission, we also strive and wish for the day that no chicken will need rescuing; a day when all hens will be free. To scratch in the soil, to stretch your wings, to bathe in the dust and to feel the sun’s warm rays upon your back – these are some of the most important moments in the life of a chicken, yet they are denied to over 11 million battery hens in our country alone. Take a moment this Chicken Independence Day to join millions of people worldwide in enjoying our beautiful, heartwarming video, Normal and Natural and ask yourself, “Shouldn’t it be Normal and Natural for humans to be kind?”
Happy Chicken Independence Day from all of us here at Edgar’s Mission!
A herd of beautiful Angora goats is in desperate need of a helping hand. And that is just what we have swung into action to make possible. With the first of these goats having arrived at our sanctuary we have already commenced urgent and much-needed hoof trimming, wigging* and dag removal**. All goats have been treated for parasites and received vitamin injections. Despite being emaciated, they are welcoming of our kindnesses and are really very sweet. Bucks will shortly be castrated, and each animal assessed for any vet work required.
What we need most right now are offers of life-long homes for the animals, they truly deserve that. Angora goats do need more upkeep that other goats, with regular fleece removal and wigging essential. If you are able to assist, please send your contact details to [email protected]
We do ask for your patience in reply as our workload has suddenly increased manyfold.
* wigging is the removal of fleece from around the eyes of goats to ensure they can see
** dag removal is the cutting of lumps of encrusted faeces from the rear end of animals
A tiny lamb suddenly appearing in the headlights of a late-night traveller was something this kind-hearted driver least expected. But sadly, this was no tiny baby who had simply lost their way, as a serious head wound told of a lucky escape from a predator, who dropped the hapless animal some distance from where he ought to be. But this is where Little Boy Blue’s luck turned from bad to bright, as he was taken home and a call hastily made to Edgar’s Mission. With the wound still fresh, several stiches were needed to close the gaping hole in the little guy’s head. Now all he needed to make his life complete was a warm bottle and snazzy jacket (resigning ourselves to the fact that, sadly, Little Boy Blue would never see his dear mum again). But with determination in our stride, compassion in our hearts and teddy bears at the ready, we have promised our new friend that we will be the best mum for him we can ever be.
On this Mother’s Day we celebrate mothers, in all their glorious shapes and species, and thank them for making the world a kinder and safer place for those they love.
We’d like to dedicate Meghan’s uplifting rescue story to mothers everywhere, may your babies stay safe and sound.
When one divorces themselves of any preconceptions they have about animals and looks into their eyes, looking back at them they will see a curious and intelligent, living, breathing being who very much wants to live.
We don’t know if Norma Jean had a name before we bestowed one upon her, but we did know her future was bleak at best. On the run for over 24 hours, which spanned many a busy outer Melbourne road, Norma Jean literally ran for her life. She stopped momentarily to survey her situation and allow onlookers to catch a Facebook moment of a terrified and trembling animal. “I’ve never seen an animal shake so much,” one person relayed, but it was to another that Norma Jean owes her life: the one who made call after fruitless call, each one greatly increasing the likelihood of the young goat being shot, until a call was made to an emergency veterinary clinic. This was the one call needed to cause our rescue team to swing into action. As we uttered the words to the caring vet nurse, “Please tell them, don’t shoot, we are on the way,” we were indeed on the way, and so too was our dear friend, Manfred Zabinskas of Five Freedoms Animal Rescue.
Can you see where Norma Jean is hiding?
13th March 2017
“They are both full of lice, but soon they are going to be full of love.”
These rescues are only possible because of you, our incredible supporters and donors, thank you!
If you would like to donate to our Medical Fighting Fund please click here.
What does pure relief look like? Homa’s expression says it all.
Once a stud merino ram, Homa had since aged beyond his usefulness and became homeless. Finding himself at a rural pound with greatly overgrown fleece, Homa was to be given a second chance and an eccentric but essential new haircut – removing the hundreds of grass seeds forging their way through his skin.
Homa has found his way home and his welfare will never again depend upon his “usefulness” – from here on out, this dear gent’s only task is the pursuit of happiness.
Read Homa’s full story and see more photos here.
Today we are giddy with delight as Lambert came home. But it was not a noisy, cramped, open aired livestock carrier that made this possible. Rather our straw filled transport vehicle, carefully navigating each turn to ensure Lambert was as comfortable as possible and never put off his feet, that did.
If you missed Lambert’s arrival, he came into our care in the dying hours of Tuesday just gone. Found by a kind heart who witnessed his brutal handling as he was tossed from a livestock carrier to land in an almost unmoving lump next to his dead companion. As more nervous sheep were unloaded, this courageous passer-by knew just what she had do. Securing Lambert’s release as the words “yeah, you can have it. We’re only going to knock it on the head when we’re finished” were uttered and Lambert’s life was set to be rewritten. Continue reading
Our Buffalo Bill, not to be confused with William Frederick “Buffalo Bill” Cody of the American Wild West fame, who killed over 4000 bison, is a gentle soul who never claimed a scalp, although he did have a bounty of sorts on his head. You see, our Buffalo Bill takes his name from the mountain range upon which he and his two buddies had roamed for many a year. Indeed, the picturesque mountain range of Mt Buffalo and her glorious falls and mountain ranges could be argued to be an idyllic home for a goat.
Alas, treacherous winding roads and close encounters with humans were one way or another going to claim the life of Bill, as it had done his small herd some time earlier. Corralled for death, Bill managed somehow to escape and literally took for the hills and high country, eventually settling on the car park area of Rollasons Falls. Over time, the timid and lonely Bill became a little too confident with food-bearing humans and displaying his annoyance at those without food. And so, Buffalo Bill’s notoriety began to soar as high as the mountain range he had come to love. With notices placed warning of his “dangerous” nature, Bill’s days seemed to be numbered. But here’s where luck and a kind heart pedalled in. Having witnessed Bill’s gentle side and learning of the “mysterious” disappearance of other goats from the area, our Good Samaritan put the wheels in motion for a rescue plan for Bill.
I did save a strawberry for you, but then I got hungry. It’s the thought that counts, right?
Kris Kringle is quite the gentleman.
And kindness has never been so cute.
Princess Leia is proof that a little bit of kindness makes the whole world of difference.
I’m ready for my close up now.
When your heart is as beautiful as Ruby’s, you’ll always take a great picture.
Feeling blue? We have just the cure – cute piglets having breakfast. Bye bye Monday Blues!
Knock knock. Who’s there? It’s me, Madeline Merino.
Doe-eyed Madeline owes her life to a sweltering heatwave. Noticing her difficulty walking, her previous caretakers decided it was too hot to dig a hole to bury the little lamb – and as the days passed they realised there was another option. And we’re so glad they did.
Read Madeline’s story here.
And how privileged are we to witness the special bonds between Carol and her piglets. Seeing Carol nurture her precious babies is enough to warm our souls.
You can watch Carol’s heartwarming arrival video here.
This is a public service announcement. Please stop what you are doing and look at this incriminating photo, we need your help to catch these offenders. You won’t regret it.
Cookie, Kris Kringle and Candy are wanted for causing hearts to flutter and showing people that little piggies deserve only to be treated with kindness.
Each and every animal comes into this world with the same determination to live and seeks a happy life. As individuals they have no understanding of why humans would want to hurt them, and if they could it would surely give them no solace. Continue reading
You can have your cake and eat it too, just like Marty Turkey. With the amazing breadth of food choices at our excited little fingertips, eating compassionately has never been so tasty.
There’s a warmth that comes from good friends, like that between best friends Rosie and Connor. When Connor arrived, he was clinging far too gingerly to life. Covered in amniotic fluid and his umbilical cord still wet, Connor was only hours old and already exposed to a cold hard truth – no shelter and ewes bred to lamb in winter are a deadly mix. Today, Connor’s days are filled with kindness, joy and warmth.
You can read Connor’s story here.
On that fateful day, the driver didn’t see Mixie fall, or leap, from the back of the stockcrate that was carrying her to be butchered. Actually, nobody had really seen Mixie until the kind stranger secured her safe passage to Edgar’s Mission. Anyone who truly saw her – as an innocent and gentle calf deserving of happiness, kindness and her mother’s knowing care – would never have thought her life was worth anything less.
An open and kind heart is one of the greatest gifts we can share with the world. Once we start to really see farmed animals, they leap into our hearts as though their lives depend on it. Which they do.
When Sunday arrived at Edgar’s Mission, she was just a dainty little one weighing less than 3kg. From uncertain beginnings she has blossomed into a beautiful ewe with a long and happy life awaiting. It’s amazing what a little kindness can do.
Pictured: Sunday and friend Itty Bitty
Read Sunday’s full story and sign up to be her Best Buddy here.
With all the promotions linking Australia Day to lamb, we wanted to show you how we think lambs deserve to be treated. With respect and, as always, kindness.
We absolutely, positively love lambs. Not the kind you find neatly packaged at the supermarket, but the living and feeling animals who desperately want to live, just like this cheeky little guy, Wah.
And here’s an adorable video to warm your heart this Australia Day!
How beautiful to see a mother nurture her baby. Before arriving at Edgar’s Mission, already carrying a calf in her bulging belly, Clarabelle lived on a dairy farm. There, every baby she carried, gave birth to and nurtured would have been taken away shortly after birth so her milk could be harvested for human consumption.
Today, Clarabelle still dotes on her little one, Valentine, who is no longer so little! In a world where the natural bonds of motherhood are broken every day in the name of industry and fleeting tastes, Charabelle’s story is finally one of lasting love.
You can read their touching story and sign up to be their Best Buddy here.
Cold, alone and in a barren place a bewildered sow gave birth to seven tiny piglets. In such an inhospitable of circumstance, it would be a miracle if any would survive and by daybreak only three had. As our rescue team set off a straw filled stable was readied for their arrival. Gentle yet scared, the new mum anxiously followed the crate into which we had placed her surviving babies. Safely ensconced in our float, we were Edgar’s Mission bound but not before the not-so-fortunate ones too were gathered up for burial at the sanctuary, it was the only kindness we could now offer them. Continue reading
As the calendar rolled over to November we learnt of the tragic fate of a herd of domestic goats. With around a dozen of the goats already corralled and trucked off to slaughter, three recently trapped goats were awaiting a similar fate. But with news of their plight hitting our ears we knew just what we had to do, downing our tools and grabbing the car keys our rescue team swung into top gear.
Sitting at 519 metres above sea level the view from Magnet Hill, just north of the township of Gisborne, is quite majestic. So too were her two woolly inhabitants who had gazed out from this point for many a year, but it was only a matter of time before their luck ran out. With at least three years’ worth of wool coupled with recent rains and summer’s impending heat, it was a perfect storm for flystrike. And more dangers lurked around the corner as the hectic and unforgiving major highway would give no second chances to wandering sheep. Snow Ball and his trusty best buddy, Cream Puff, were in dire need of a lifeline.
Determination is described as willpower and strength of mind. Those who have it are said to possess a firmness of purpose, and we can think of no other animal who fits the bill better than little Petal. Arriving at our sanctuary just over a month ago she had little sensation in her hind limbs, unable to even move them, let alone stand.
Climbing into the murky darkness that was the understorey of a house, we spied the pig who council had alerted us to. The tale went like this: a medium-sized black and white boar had been taking refuge in the area for several weeks, at first masquerading as a wombat and sending the household dogs into a frenzy. By what circumstance Alfie had found himself alone in a foreign world we do not know, but what we did know was that we were his last hope.