The result of a mating between a Friesian and a Jersey cross cow is Buffy, a sweet faced little black heifer calf. While her gender would normally have spared her the grisly fate afforded to most of her male ‘bobby calf’ counterparts, her particularly weany size and birth deformity did not. Buffy’s steely resolve to survive, despite a severely undershot jaw and a most unusually shaped head, saw her immediately touch the heart of a kind hearted dairy farm hand. Pleading for Buffy’s life to be spared, the worker’s good heart won out. And so the call was made to Edgar’s Mission. If Buffy’s cute little, pearly white tooth revealing, pout doesn’t melt your heart, her pleading pink tongue and innocent eyes will. Continue reading
That Nigel is an old horse is not a revelation. It is something that his greying face and swaying back cannot hide. His oft times seen protruding tongue is not some cheeky school boy act of bravado but rather the sad legacy of his old man teeth that are no longer able to do their job. But at 33 years young (that’s about 93 in human years) Nigel is pretty spritely for his age. Pretty spritely, that is, until this morning. At first unable to stand, then when he finally did after several heart stopping attempts, Nigel showed severe symptoms of pain – pawing at the ground then swinging his head backward to look at his stomach. Any horse owner would recognise that I have just described the symptoms of colic, which is cause for alarm in any horse and generally brings serious, if not fatal, consequences in an older horse. Continue reading
They say all things grow with love, and this is Penny’s story…
While Benjamin Franklin was one of the first to recognise the majesty of turkeys, declaring them a ‘Bird of Courage’ and deeming them to be a more appropriate American National Emblem than the bald eagle, last night’s exposé of shocking cruelty at a turkey processing plant in Sydney saw anything but courage shown toward these gentle creatures. Images screened on ABC’s Lateline program revealed disturbing footage anonymously supplied to Animal Liberation NSW, which seriously calls into question claims made by Inghams’ (the company involved) CEO, Kevin McBain (as quoted in today’s ‘The Age’ )
‘‘Inghams has a strong commitment to animal welfare. We have Best Practice Animal Welfare Programs and Standards in place. We work with regulatory animal welfare specialists to ensure these programs are active and operating throughout all aspects of the company. The programs are regularly audited internally and by second and third party auditors to ensure compliance with standards.’’ Continue reading
Still in the Edgar’s Mission Intensive Care Unit is our precious little girl, Penny. She hasn’t given up the fight and neither have we. Our ‘round the clock physiotherapy is reaping great results. Penny can now bear weight, albeit only momentarily. This vast improvement from her condition upon arrival is most encouraging. The sweet little girl now awaits our assistance to help her stand so she may relieve herself. This tells us she has not lost control of her bodily functions (which is great news) and most importantly, she has not lost her dignity. And so it appears that Penny’s appetite, along with her strength, is slowly returning. Penny has been introduced to carrots, which she has told us must be given in bite size pieces, she loves lush green grass (which we struggle to find in the current drought but for her we somehow manage to) and she has taken to her chaff and grain mix with a look of, ‘OMG, how have I been denied this for so long!’ Continue reading
In the light of a new day and the first day of the rest of her life, Penny’s state of health has been more fully assessed. Our initial fears that heat stress was not the only ordeal Penny had endured was confirmed as she is still unable to bear weight and stand on her own. But the debilitating contracted joints in her front legs are welcoming of our around the clock physiotherapy; time will tell our success but on a more joyous note Penny is slowly starting to eat mouthfuls of the juicy and delicious green grass we have handpicked for her.
Despite now being fully hydrated Penny remains quite simply exhausted. With all ribs and each vertebra telling a sad tale of starvation and the sores on her right confirming several days had seen Penny struggling futilely to right herself. But she didn’t give in and neither will we. Penny’s will to live is as strong as our resolve to achieve justice for her and her cousins – the battle may be weary but worth the spoils.
Panting heavily beneath a grossly swollen tongue that was threatening to block her airway was Penny. With the temperature shooting skyward of 32 degrees, no breeze and an unforgiving scorching sun overhead, Penny had been left for dead. Her severely sunburnt ears and the frantic scratch marks in the soil that surrounded her told she had been desperately trying to rise and seek shade for some time. Penny had truly been forgotten. One can only imagine what thoughts had been racing through her head in the hours and even days before her rescue by a kind hearted motorist, who happened to be travelling along that lonely stretch of road. That Penny had recently been shorn and was severely underweight compounded her woes. Continue reading
Our thanks to EM volunteers; Amy, Belinda, Darin, Deb, Doug, Eve, Meg, Natasha and Paula for helping to ensure ducky friend, the Lone Ranger, is lone no more!
A big shout out of thanks to all our wonderful supporters who so kindly donated to our hay feeder and hay appeal.
‘Wake up Kevin, we have some new buddies for you to meet today.’ With Kevin making good progress since his arrival just under a week ago, today was the day we chose to commence his rehabilitation into the outside world and provide him with the chance to see what life off of a chain is really about. Walking with much enthusiasm, he was a different Kevin to the forlorn looking chap we led into the barn last Thursday. A homemade safety helmet was fashioned to cover his exposed horn cavity and to protect the wound from dust and debris. The words ‘No, no Kev, all the cool goats are wearing them this year,’ were uttered and Kevin was ready to meet the first of his new friends, pigs Hamish and Olivia.
While it is just over two weeks since our dear little buddy Private Bobby passed away, it is over two years since the Primary Industries Ministerial Council reviewed the acceptable ‘time off feed’ limit for bobby calves being transported to slaughter between five and thirty days of age. And sadly, during this review nothing was decided, let alone changed;
Ministers discussed and recommended a mandatory standard for maximum time of feed for bobby calves at the 21st Primary Industries Ministerial Council meeting in October 2011, but could not reach agreement. All industries involved in the bobby calf supply chain (that is dairy farmers, livestock agents, calf buyers and transporters and calf processors) have agreed to implement a national industry standard that sets a limit of 30 hours time off feed for calves aged 5 to 30 days being transported without mothers. This industry will match the only other international standard (New Zealand) for a maximum time off feed. Continue reading
With so many different species of animals on the farm our feed storage needs are great and varied and doubly so due to the hot summer months causing grass dry off in paddocks. So we need a solution where we can bulk store feed without providing a tempting menu for little critters. If you are able to assist us in securing several large rodent proof sturdy and relocatable feeders ours and the resident’s thanks will be heading your way. Continue reading
Its Competition Time again!! For your chance to win an Edgar’s Mission prize simply leave a comment with a funny caption or email us. Snuffles is very excited to hear all of your captions! Winner announced in March Trottings! Good luck!
Please take a moment to watch ‘It’s time for us to be kind’ – an incredibly inspiring speech by Edgar’s Mission Founder and Director, Pam Ahern, recorded on March 2nd at the Melbourne Pig Save Rally in Bourke st Mall.
Kevin’s story is as tragic as it is real for both he and his human carers. Kevin was rescued from slaughter as a young kid goat around seven years ago by well-meaning people whose compassion sadly was not matched by their knowledge of goat husbandry and welfare. It was Kevin’s gentle and personable nature that quickly endeared him to one and all. But Kevin grew, as all goats do, and this was beyond the scope of the backyard in which he lived. The fencing was unsuitable to contain a goat and so it became a life on a chain for Kev. Taking up what appeared to be a good offer, Kevin was loaned to a farm where he was to lead a life as all goats should. But Kevin’s good fortune was soon eclipsed by a lack of care that saw his hooves become hideously overgrown, forcing him to painfully move about on his knees. When Kevin’s human friends returned to see their buddy, it was not a robust, happy and ‘chain free’ goat who greeted them. The sight of the now pitiful Kevin brought tears to their eyes and pain to their hearts as they bundled the hapless goat away. Continue reading