Mothers come in all shapes and sizes, but when it comes to their babies, they love them just the same. Mother goats communicate with their babies, otherwise known as kids, by way of their distinctive bleats – each able to recognize the other’s soon after birth. The young kids, who are precocial from birth, quickly learn to follow mum and given the chance will remain very close until they are naturally weaned at around six months of age.
Baby animals can be described in two ways: precocial or altricial. Precocial young are born with their eyes open, are able to walk, feed themselves and are able to keep themselves warm. Altricial babies are born naked, blind and highly dependant on parental care.
Intelligent, fun loving and curious creatures, young kids quickly seek to explore their world. Aided by their keen balancing skills, nothing seems too impossible for them to surmount. Their antics guaranteed to bring smiles all round!!
Warren Buffet, step aside! Bill Gates, please make room! Vladimir Putin, get off that horse! Barrack Obama, listen up! The Most Influential Animal of 2014 has just been announced by the Huffington Post, and this prestigious title belongs to none other than our very dear little Leon Trotsky. While such a stellar accolade many go to the head of many, not Leon, all he wishes for is a revolution of kindness to take over the world.
We too are heartened to learn that Frostie (our little snow goat), although his mission on this earthly coil is complete, came in at number two.
At Edgar’s Mission we go to great lengths to not only give animals a life, but a life worth living. In the case of our little orphans, in addition to suffering the stress of losing their mums, many arrive in terrible condition at the coldest time of the year here in Australia. Whilst we can give them all the love and nutrition we can, the need for warmth and safety is vital. But there is more to our happy jackets than meets the eye. They not only keep the little ones toasty the slight pressure of the jacket offers a level of security much like wrapping a baby in a snuggle rug.
Occupational therapists and the renowned animal behaviorist Temple Grandin have identified the importance of pressure as having a relaxing and calming effect. While light touch can alert or excite the nervous, system stronger pressure has a calming effect. This more than likely is due the release of endorphins, a similar effect can be given by gentle stroking. One of the difficulties we face dealing with baby lambs and kid goats is that they are prey animals that have generally had little to no human contact and as such they see humans as predators and to be feared.
Our jackets have many different origins; many are donated, some even hand made, others are store purchased. Our preference however is for well fitting ones that are waterproof, and yes the more colorful the better! Different colored jackets also help us identify the little ones until their personalities come to the fore. And of course they do look pretty darn cute in them as well!!
The etymology of the colorful Australian phrase that suggests one has no chance in the world springs forth several colourful theories. The first relates to the survival against the odds of escaped English convict William Buckley in the harsh Australian bush. Another reference is to ‘Bombala’ Buckley and his attempts to sue the NSW Government over title to a piece of land that appeared to have little chance of victory. Yet others relate to a gentleman named Mars Buckley. In 1851, Mr Buckley joined forces with a Mr Crumpton Nunn to set up a small store in a Melbourne shack. Lending their surnames to the business, it flourished to become the famous (albeit now defunct) department store, Buckley and Nunn’s. Mars Buckley also provides another link to the popular expression, which came about in 1893 as Victoria was in the grips of a financial crisis. With a run on banks by depositors to secure their money, the aged Mr. Buckley muscled his way through the crowds and withdrew his vast deposits. Thus ensuring the Bank would have ‘Buckley’s chance’ of using his money to pay other investors. Continue reading
With love and good cheer from your buddy Marissa!! How cool is this, little Leon (well he may not be quite so little these days but he is certainly still cute) shared his spoils with his buddy Thumbelina. Please let us below how you shared your kindness this Christmas.
Santa brought the Edgar’s Mission residents 300kg of watermelon for Christmas! Watch how it went down in the video below.
To all our supporters, volunteers and friends – we wish you and your family the merriest of Christmas’s and trust you will have a happy, healthy and cruelty free New Year.
With Christmas set to quickly descend, languishing in outer Melbourne pound was no place to be for a frightened little goat. But dear Nicholas’s Christmas wish came early as our kindness van jingled its way through the gates. Much smaller than we first expected him to be and terribly thin, our hearts immediately went out to the trembling young goat. So light was Nick that he could easily be picked up and carried to our awaiting ‘sleigh’ as we whispered “all your Christmas’ are about to come at once little man”.
So for Nicholas, Christmas now will truly be a time to celebrate. He will receive all the veterinary care he needs and all the love we can muster as the company of his own kind, goatee jungle gyms and mountains await. Sadly for many animals of this world there will be no Santa Claus bearing gifts of happiness and good cheer, nor any reindeer to guide them to a better place. But they do have you. Every kind choice you make can make a world of difference to them. Please find a place in your heart not your plate for animals and remember this festive season and beyond, choose wisely, act compassionately and watch the seeds of your kindness grow.
Now Joe and Mirek are best buddies, they like to hang out together and do ‘blokey’ sort of things in their man cave of a garage and they both have kind hearts. So when Mirek ‘s neighbor unceremoniously dumped one of his two ‘geese’ in Mirek’s backyard along with the words (censored version) “And I just dumped the other at the park ‘cause he bit me,” Mirek was concerned. Enlisting the help of his good friend, Joe the two gentlemen headed on down to the park to locate the ‘goose’ and make sure all was well. Finding the feathered creature happily splashing about in the water was a great relief, however the two were at odds as to whether this was the best option for him. The final vote as to whether this was a suitable environment for a domestic animal was to come down to Edgar’s Mission and so the call was made. With a resounding ‘no’ coming down the phone line, Mirek and Joe set about to rein in the ‘goose’.
Now anyone familiar with waterbirds will know that separating one from freedom is never an easy task. But when you are a pair of middle-aged gentlemen unfamiliar with, and ill prepared for, wading and your only asset is your kind heart the task, whilst bordering on comical was nigh impossible. Placating bemused passersby with the assurance that they were simply taking their friend for a swim, least they be mistaken for men of ill intent, Joe and Mirek could not be swayed from their mission. Continue reading
Painted in 1770 by Thomas Gainsborough, The Blue Boy is reputed to be worth millions. The oil portrait of an adolescent boy believed to be Jonathan Buttall, the son of a wealthy hardware merchant, hangs in the Huntington Library in San Marino, California. The Blue Boy is also the name of a shy, albeit sweet young male goat with beautiful blue grey fur who recently arrived at Edgar’s Mission. Sadly this young chap indeed had reason to be blue. Found wandering at large with no one wishing to lay claim to his origin, things were looking bleak. Stories such as Blue Boy’s are all too familiar to us; animals mysteriously falling from the sky, noone knowing from whence they came. It causes us to shake our heads in shame that we humans can be so thoughtless and callous when it comes to sentient creatures for whom we are responsible. But we can lament the past or we can rejoice the future and the latter is just what we are going to do because one thing is for sure– our new goatee friend Blue Boy will be blue no more! And just like the painting we believe him to be priceless!
As two lonely abandoned little lambs lay huddled together by the side of the road, a kind heart approached. At first one lamb rose to his feet and attempted to run, but his physical form was unable to meet his desire to flee. Quickly falling to the ground next to his buddy, his body stiffened as his fear raced on. Bundling up the little waifs as the words ‘you’re safe now’ were whispered in their sunburnt ears, the fate of the lambs quickly changed.
‘They’re just bags of wool covered tiny bones” rolled from our shocked lips as our fingers slipped around their tiny ribcages. As the bewildered babes were surrendered into our care thoughts of just who could allow this to happen to animals ran through our heads. But on that we could not dwell as two lives needed our every attention. The petrified looks on their little faces as they scanned their new, unfamiliar world will haunt us forever, so too the grisly sight of their freshly docked little tails. The male lamb, we christened Nugget, suffering the worst, with wriggling maggots oozing out and occasionally falling to the floor. This sickening sight was matched by his shriveled testicle sack that still bore the tight rubber ring that had made it that way. A severe and no doubt painful laceration just above the ring suggesting the poor fellow had struggled and thrashed against the pain as the blood supply was cut, causing an even more ‘biting’ wound. Continue reading
12 months ago to this very day the fate of four abandoned goats took a turn for the decidedly better. Today the matriarch Nana, her loyal companion Job, the cheeky Heidi and now friendly Harriet, have truly found peace on earth. Please watch our amazing rescue against the odds here.
It is reported that Benjamin Franklin once said “well done it better than well said” and so to our friends at the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists a huge “well done” along with our sincere thanks heads your way. As their chosen charity, Edgar’s Mission was the recipient of their yearly fundraising activities as a cheque for almost $3,000.00 was handed over on Friday. Making the trek south to show their appreciation were two of the human contingent of Edgar’s Mission along with the adorable Sunday Lamb and ever-popular Little Miss Sunshine Chicken. It seems for the good folk at the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologist their kindness has no borders, and for that we are truly appreciative. Special thanks to Edgar’ Mission devotee Tracey for making all this possible!!
It was love at first sight, or so we were told, for two of our latest arrivals James van Der Beak and Heather McComb. Both hailing from an outer Melbourne pound, the loved up duo had eyes only for each other upon their arrival at our sanctuary. And why wouldn’t they? James, a delightful and dapper young rooster, with a positively unique and dashing hairdo, is the utmost gentleman, calling Heather to his side when a tasty treat appears, watching over her every move and serenading her with his manly crows throughout the day. And Heather too, is no shrinking violet, never hesitating to put her dear James’ competition in their place should they ever mistake exactly where her heart lie and attempt to woo her with their less than charming antics. And while James van der Bear and dear Heather McComb are happily playing the part of loved up couple, what a relief they must now feel that the dramas of their past are well and truly behind them and (unlike their human namesakes) these love birds of a feather are well and truly sticking together.
He comes with a distinguished beard and that distinctive and pungent male goatee smell that seems to linger on your clothes forever. He is our new caprine pal, Abraham. A friendly white goat of no particular breed and with a past we cannot tell, he recently arrived at our sanctuary by way of a council animal shelter. Having spent the prescribed days in their lock up and remaining unclaimed, his future looked bleak had a kind hearted council worker not intervened. Looking into his peaceful and wise eyes they too saw Abraham’s beautiful kind nature and deemed him worthy of a second chance. So for now Abraham, having navigated a minefield of dubious outcomes, can now prepare to climb goat mountains, run through green fields and meet other equally lucky goat friends for the remainder of his days. Continue reading
It was not a manmade ship that purposefully set sail from our sanctuary on a mission of kindness recently but a kindness vehicle geared up to change lives. And while the world may not have exactly been ending for most of us, for the creatures at the centre of our operation, their world as well as their future were well and truly looking dark and stormy, had a flood of kindness not been sent their way. And so, on that fateful November day, we welcomed the ‘Kindness Ark’ back through our farm gates after its maiden voyage, with a whopping 10 lucky new residents who had heard our cries of “All aboard!” and made their way to our sanctuary, where a whole new world for them all is truly just beginning.
Disembarking the Kindness Ark are:
Pinto Pig – a gorgeous, yet somewhat nervous black and white sow who found herself ‘unclaimed’ and with nowhere to call home in a council pound. Although wary of our intentions, we know in our hearts that Pinto will slowly come to realise that we are indeed ‘the good guys’ and although it will take some time, we too know that she will learn the true joy of a good old belly scratch when her trust in us eventually grows. Continue reading
Many people say we are truly blessed as each day we are surrounded by animals like the ever loving Ruby Dog, and indeed they are correct. But we too are blessed because our paths cross with so many amazing human beings, those of pure heart, true courage, loyalty and compassion. This is the story of one of them, Irene Pirini. Please feel free to share below with us your story and photos of how the forgiving and sweet Ruby Dog has touched your life.
“I remember really well the first time I walked into Edgar’s Mission.
I was in Australia just from few days, that day Lorenzo was working at Lentil as Anything, my english was even worst than today and I was still quite shocked after the long travel, the big change and the jet lag.
I was following Edgar’s since I was in Italy, and a part of me was already totally in love with this place and this people, so I really couldn’t waste the opportunity to take part of a volunteer day, the following one would have been after a month and I couldn’t wait so long!
So I took our horrible car, I drove for the first time on the left, I got lost and I spent hours driving on terrible unsurfaced roads, praying not to get stocked in the middle of a forest, but at the end, even if really late, I arrived at Willowmavin. Continue reading
Whilst our days are certainly longer since the arrival of Ohana and her four adorable kittens, they too are filled with more joy than we could have ever imagined. Watching the frightened, filthy and mucky eyed little waifs tumble over into happy, clean and full of life felines, doted on by their adoring mother we are once again reminded that all life is precious. Although happily ensconced in their pussy palace, it soon became clear that something far more sinister than a dose of cat flu had sealed the little ones eyes shut.
Bearing the scars of their life on the streets is the congenital condition of eyelid agenesis afflicting all four kittens. With a firm paw pointing to the poor diet lacking in vitamin A dear Ohana had been forced to endure the culprit.
CUTENESS ALERT!! A cat’s tail, proudly brought to you by Ohana and her four adorable kittens; Lilo, Stitch, Leilani and Makamae (precious in Hawaiin).
Yesterday we took a call for help. What followed is one of the most uplifting rescue stories of the year. Ohana certainly thinks so!
Earlier today we received a call from a factory worker to advise that kittens had been found abandoned at an industrial warehouse. Seeking refuge in a metal carryall, the tiny waifs lay huddled, not knowing that danger lurked just moments away. With a call for the carryall ordered, the distressed worker didn’t wish to move the piece of machinery, knowing full well that if they did the kittens would perish.
We had but a short window of opportunity to try and save the kittens and stave off the forklift that would surely crush them. Although our efforts were not quick, we had both the patience of the worker and luck on our side and four tiny kittens were eventually pulled one by perilous one from the tiny holes in the carry all. But despite our successful rescue, it was with heavy hearts that we left, as no mother cat was in sight.
However no sooner had our Kindness Van touched down at Edgar’s Mission, delivering its very special cargo, than we received another call from the factory worker to say that a mother cat had been spotted in the same area the kittens were found. Once again our rescue team was dispatched, hoping that our hour long journey would not see us arriving too late. After scaling fences and hiding in bushes, a mother cat was soon sighted, a trap set and with bated breath our rescuers waited… and waited… and waited.
The rest is one of the most wonderful rescue stories of the year. Ohana certainly thinks so!
Pledge to be Dairy Free this Christmas and as a token of of your kindness, and on behalf of Merle and Pearl we will send you a beautiful eBook full of beautiful photos and delicious recipes from The Kind Cook.
You may recall meeting out little goatee friend Woof recently. Well the good news is he now has a friend in the diminutive kid goat we have aptly named Meow. With her cat-like features and agile nature, little Meow weighed in at barely more than a pussycat when she arrived. She was pitifully thin, scared stiff and had an alarmingly low temperature that told us we needed to act quickly to save the poor waifs life upon her arrival. Thankfully our prayers and good deeds were rewarded as little Meow began to rally each day. But it was not without several painful injections each day that aided her recovery. In a good cop, bad cop trade off, after we administered Meow’s needles, we would then carry her each day to her favorite tree and lift her high up so she could eat the tender young leaves. This now has become a daily ritual as we take the young ones from their night time quarters to the their day yard, stopping off along the way to raise Meow up like an Egyptian Princess to savour her beloved leaves. She has us well trained indeed!
“Nonviolence is a powerful and just weapon, which cuts without wounding and ennobles the man who wields it. It is a sword that heals.” – Martin Luther King, Jr.
Our latest arrival Excalibur, despite being named after a sword of war, comes along with a special message of peace; of nonviolence toward his kind. Having made his way to us via an outer suburb pound, Excalibur’s life thus far has been anything but peaceful. Despite his gentle nature and penchant for cuddles from his new human friends, Excalibur has been used as a cockfighting rooster and bears the scars of many a battle gone by. A badly damaged beak and an eye that is no longer of use are just two of the visible scars this dear boy now bears due to the actions of his former ‘carers’. Artificially sharpened spurs and an upper beak that also shows signs of being unnatural are just two more of the no doubt many woes that plague this dear boy.
It was the rescue mission that almost never happened but boy oh boy are we glad that it did! On a day that saw our diary filled to the brim with various educational outings and animal related affairs, a call from a Good Samaritan could not go unanswered. This kind hearted individual was concerned for the wellbeing of two female Muscovy ducks who had wandered into yard and decided to stay put (well, somewhat for Muscovy ducks are one domestic duck who can fly for several metres if so inclined). With calls to the local council and neighbours seeing no one ‘claim’ the duo, we were asked could we please provide them sanctuary at Edgar’s Mission. With our rescue vehicle on the way, our hearts fell when we were then advised the duo had taken off again and fled the yard. However, the dear little girls must have known they were onto a good thing for back they wandered in the nick of time and we can almost imagine them, in their chatty Muscovy way, asking the homeowner, “Is this where we sign up to go to Edgar’s Mission?” With our smiles almost as wide as those on the faces of our new darling ducks, we gathered them up in our arms, saying, “Why of course, Hannah and Barbara, it most certainly is!” And with us, happy Hannah and beautiful Barbara will be safe forevermore.
As Captain Jack Sparrow, Delores De Pig and their good buddy Albert Einswine swaggered down the path to their new home at Edgar’s Mission, audible were their squeals of delight. First to walk the plank into their dam was Delores De Pig, quickly plonking herself down and refusing to budge. Albert Einswine was next to follow suit, however when his hairy little trotters felt the cool water swirling about and the mud squelching up between his toes he was out of there post haste. Einswine has always been a little more on the sensitive side. But it was Captain Jack who was soon nowhere to be seen, as he trotted off not into the sunset but into the incredibly long grass of his new digs. Happily he navigated his way through every nook and cranny, not settling into the watery delights until he was completely satisfied that his new turf lived up to our promise of piggy nirvana. Check out these images and see if you agree!
And so, summer is once again upon us, which means bushfire season is also a reality here at Edgar’s Mission. After creating our action plan for our new property, conducting a stocktake of items moved from the old farm and updating our official headcount to include each and every one of our new arrivals, it has become apparent that we will need to purchase a number of new pet carriers to have on hand in the event that we are required to transport or evacuate our smaller animal residents.
Failing to plan is planning to fail
What do bushfires, Christmas celebrations and heatwaves all have in common? They are all situations that can lead to emergency situations for the beloved animals in our life. With December now on us and these events just around the corner, our Campaign Action this month asks you to review your family’s Emergency Action Plan and ensure that your animal friends are catered for. Continue reading
Meet Sophie, Brophy and Murphy, three adorable little kid goats who just want to play and have fun. Oh so carefree and friendly, it is hard for us to imagine why anyone would abandon them but abandon they did. Whilst goats do prefer to browse on woody plants a state park is no place for them to be. Now we know if Sophie did had a choice it most certainly would not be to be left to her own and her sibling’s devices suffering the vagaries of wild living and hunters. Affable kids like these love human company, chin scratches and climbing atop their kennel.
With the recent arrival of Sophie, her siblings and many other animals this month coupled with the summer dry season that is upon us we anticipate being called upon to assist many more farmed animals in need. If you think you have what it takes to offer a rescued animal a forever home we would love to hear from you.
So just what does it take? Here a just a couple of important points to bear in mind when considering adopting a rescued animal.
- Many of the animals come from traumatic pasts or are unaccustomed to human handling so they may not at first see you as a friend.
- Fencing, fencing, fencing. Keeping animals safely contained is an absolute priority. Ringlock fencing or better is a must.
- Ah, I’m after a cheap lawnmower! Great, try any reputable hardware store. Sheep, cows, goats and pigs require a lifetime of care, through good seasons and bad, they are a someone not a something.