Little Renee, barely two days old, was found huddled next to her dying mother, her unborn sibling dead inside of her mum. What a tragic sight for anyone to behold, let alone a caring heart. Despite the best of care and veterinary intervention, nothing could wrench Renee’s mother back from the clutches of death. Even sadder still, this is not an isolated incident as we are learning of similar stories being played out over these wicked winter months across much of Victoria. Frosts, icy winds and bitter chills are claiming many lives. It would seem such paddocks are places kindness has forgotten, and although we will never understand why farmers can walk away from their responsibilities to animals, we never will.
For now, little Renee rests up in our nursery, having claimed prize position on top of a very large teddy bear. Here she can be found snoozing and posing, picture perfect, which sees us racing for our cameras, hoping to capture the precious moment. But so often this delightful scene is relegated to our memory—for little Renee is only too anxious to race up in the great hope it is bottle time! Continue reading
Now, she might seem like a pint-sized porcine to many, and that roar is more like a squeak (caused by a rather small trachea), but this tiny piglet has one mighty large personality. Little Squeak, far larger than life, oinked her way into ours on 22nd of July. She had been surrendered to a Melbourne animal shelter due to her owner’s change in circumstance—which most certainly had us scratching our heads, for the wee lass was but two months old. Surely the first rule for taking an animal into your world would be a succession plan if things do not go, well, to plan.
Already struggling to cope with the burgeoning number of unwanted cats and dogs, it now seems pigs are all too often being added to the mix, even adorable cute and tiny ones like Little Squeak. Unscrupulous breeders offering claims of ‘teacup’ and ‘tiny’ along with feeding regimes more akin to starvation plans and no background checks of owners is leading to terrible outcomes for both animals and humans. Whilst all breeders do not fit this bill, way too many do. The result is just tragic for these highly intelligent and emotional beings. And it is not just miniature pigs who have become the new ‘black’ when it comes to ‘pets’ as an alarming number of farm pigs are finding themselves homeless as well.
Hailing not from the American Wild West but from way out back-of-beyond, right here in Australia, was the tiniest wee kid goat we have ever seen. Waiting in ambush by the side of the lonely highway, little Sundance was ready to pounce. For how long he had been rehearsing his heist we do not know, but one thing is for sure—he is a master of his craft. When the time was right, the little kid spied his victim, and by lifting his head from where he lay at just the right time to catch their eye, he exacted his plan. With the car screeching to a stop, we can imagine little Sundance’s grin as he took aim and stole his first heart. With no wild bunch gang of goats in sight, the kind heart knew that lonely highways in the middle of nowhere are no place for tiny baby goats. So hitching a ride, Sundance rode shotgun all the way south to Edgar’s Mission. Continue reading
What comes after Monday but before Wednesday? Tuesday of course, and what better name to call our most recent lamby arrival who, you guessed it arrived on a Tuesday. Bringing workers to a screaming halt was a tiny little lamb who had planted himself fair in the middle of the road on which they were travelling. Whilst the occupants of the vehicle could not be described as card carrying animal lovers, they were human beings who could not live with the thought of seeing an animal suffer. So bundling up the little waif, they pooled their ideas and passed the young lamb onto someone they knew who was most certainly a bells and whistles animal hugger.
Adaptable and hardy is our Jacob, both hallmarks of his Dorper heritage. Adaptable in that Jacob has taken well to living with a herd of goats instead of his ovine kind. And hardy in that he has survived well with a retained testicle that was discovered on our routine health check upon his arrival at our sanctuary. We were not totally surprised by this additional ‘baggage’ as Jacob’s well-developed and muscular body, along with a most impressive set of horns, suggested the dear boy had either been using performance-enhancing drugs or had not been properly castrated as a young lamb. With Jacob’s dance-card marked for a date with our veterinary team, surgery was in order to put things right for the confused and testosterone-charged young lad. Although infertile, Jacob still shows much ram-like behaviour when around other sheep, and so for his peace of mind and ours, this delicate procedure is a must.
Well, two in fact! Meet Flossie and Bossie, our two new resident geese here at Edgar’s Mission. Flossie and Bossie owe their safety (and quite possibly their lives) to a kind hearted individual who resided at the property onto which the feathered duo wandered one morning. Unsure of exactly who to call or where to turn, yet recognising that these domestic geese, with their lack of camouflage and inability to fly, would not fare well in ‘the wild’ the Good Samaritan set off a chain of events that, after a brief stay at the local animal pound, soon had the twosome Edgar’s Mission bound. And it wasn’t just us welcoming these newcomers with open arms, but also our long-time resident goose, Hillary.
You may never have given it a second thought, but stuffed toys are the unsung heroes of our baby animal rescues. Orphaned lambs, piglets and kids all find comfort from snuggling against the frumpy creatures. For them they become surrogate mothers and provide the constant companionship vital in those first few days – they can make all the difference when life is teetering so uncomfortably close to the edge.
So without further ado, here is our tribute to the slumping yet steadfast heroes to countless orphaned animals. We’ve put together a selection of the cutest baby animals and their surrogates: Continue reading
Merino sheep have long dominated sheep numbers in Australia since their arrival in 1797. Highly prized for their dense, soft and finely crimped fleece, their wool is found in many high-end fashion garments. But sadly, so often the sheep who make all that happen are forgotten, like dear Charles. Purchased from a livestock market but left behind because the purchaser had not done their homework, things were looking grim for Charles. Making his situation worse was the fact that Charles was all alone in a world full of scary sounds, unfamiliar surrounds and potential predators. So naturally enough, when Charles came into our care, he was particularly flighty and none too appreciative of our advances.
With his mandatory quarantine* time up, Charles has made fast friends with a recently arrived group of black-faced Suffolks. His stark white fleece and almost concealed face, bar his little Merino-signature wrinkled nose poking through, see Charles now the ‘black sheep’ of the flock, but a most distinguished one at that. Continue reading
Dear little Latte stole our heart the second we laid eyes upon her. If her terrified stance pulled at our heartstrings, her pitifully bony body made us desperately want to help her. And as if her woes were not enough, we were soon to learn that something far more sinister was brewing inside her. Our first hint was the nasty, foul-smelling discharge from her rear end. Pyometra was the culprit, and sadly it seemed this had been plaguing her for some time. Rare in goats and even rarer in females as young as Latte, this infection of the uterus poses a very serious health issue. With several injections required daily to address this condition, our work at gaining Latte’s trust was dealt a savage blow.
Little Friday has been heavily on our minds since arriving into our care just over one week ago. Found beside her dead mother, the young lamb, barely days old, was cold, dehydrated and now all alone in a big hostile world. But thankfully she was found not by hungry crows, rather a kind heart and she was soon Edgar’s Mission bound. Alerted ahead to her impending arrival and her ‘really weird eyes’, we knew things were not looking good for Friday.
That Friday was suffering a condition known, as entropion was painfully evident by nasty red ulcers on both of her weeping eyes. Entropion, in itself is a non-lethal condition where the eyelid/s are turned in causing irritation and abrasions on the cornea (surface of the eye), however this can lead to ulceration and even blindness. The condition now addressed, warm jacket donned, sweet formula given, company of equally lucky lambs found, now all Friday has to have on her mind is having a grand old time for the rest of her sheepy days!
Not only does this post come with a cuteness alert, it also comes with a very special warning. Little Squeak is adorable, no two ways about it. She comes close to the cutest creature you will ever see. But, before you race to the keyboard and order yourself a mini-pig wait up. Pigs come with a lifetime of commitment and care, and whilst they make amazing companions for people, people do not always make amazing companions for pigs.
Today as we sifted through our emails, we learned that we here in Australia are not the only country facing the problem of a growing number of unwanted pet piggies, with the headline ‘Teacup’ pigs getting abandoned across America’, hitting our inbox. Continue reading
It’s no surprise we had a wonderful time last night. How great it was to mingle with people who mean so much to us, and to hear how much we mean to them. Day in and day out we go about one task and then the next, the work is often hard not so glamourous. This is especially true around winter time. The kind gestures and words of encouragement from people who believe in our work keep our hearts warm and give us strength for another day.
Dear little Poppy pig certainly landed on her trotters when she made her way to Edgar’s Mission. Escaping her preordained fate of ending up on someone’s dinner plate, not only has Poppy recovered from her sad and heartbreaking mistrust of humans, she has moved on to become one of the ‘super stars’ of our rehoming program, lighting up the life of her new family and causing them to collectively scratch their heads as to just what their lives were like prior to her arrival.
Poppy’s adopted mum Tabatha writes, “Poppy has settled into the family well. She loves having her belly rubbed and going for walks. She’s always making us laugh as she loves to get up to mischief and be involved in everything we are doing. Poppy has just started swimming in the dam with the dogs. She is very smart and is learning heaps of things like walking with the lead and almost can sit for her dinner but she loves her food so sometimes doesn’t use her manners. We wanted to get another pig as a friend for my boy Theo so when we saw Edgar’s Mission were looking to rehome some pigs we thought this would be a perfect opportunity. Poppy and Theo are only talking through the fence at the moment until they get used to each other but it won’t be long until they are the best of friends. I would like to thank Edgar’s Mission for all the fantastic work they do and for giving us the opportunity to adopt Poppy. I love her so much.” Continue reading
Advertised for free on a buy, swap and sell site was this wee lamb. However, when the kind hearts arrived to collect her, they were shocked at the poor and dirty state of health she was in. Quickly realising that a small backyard and a sickly young lamb were more than their heart and home could handle, little Dimity was surrendered to our care. While Dimity’s little body is home to but a bag of feeble lamby bones (so little muscle does she have), she does have an incredible will to live and that is just what we have pledged to help this most unassuming creature do—with all the lamby gusto in the world of course.
We sincerely wonder what Dimity’s first carers were thinking. Didn’t they know that little lambs are for lovin’ not the oven, or buy, swap and sell sites….
Whilst little Dominic looks oh so chic in his most fashionable jacket, his sassy looks belie his traumatic start in life. With no paparazzi in sight, he was gently removed from his sickly and dying mother and sped with urgency to our sanctuary. A bottle of life-enhancing and immunity-building colostrum had been thawed in readiness. Indeed, the newborn Dominique’s entry into the world was anything but glamorous as we carefully cleaned him off, dabbing antiseptic solution on his still-bleeding umbilical cord.
Orphan lambs like the diminutive Dominic sit on the cusp for so many reasons: born at the harshest time of the year (coming from the warmth of their mother’s womb only to hit the frost and chills of winter), suffering the separation from their mothers, and cast into foreign environments—and whilst given colostrum and special formula that best mimics what Mother Nature intended for them, it is never quite the same. But nothing can extinguish their will to live, trumping the odds time and time again; these little guys and gals really are supermodels of the ovine world. And for the ones fortunate enough to make it to a sanctuary such as ours, tireless humans work around the clock to ensure that forevermore they will only ever gambol down a catwalk of kindness. It’s what they deserve—strike a pose little lambies, strike a pose.
Last week we introduced Aldónio, who was raising money for Edgar’s Mission by running an 80km mountain trail. He completed the trail in 9 hours and 42 minutes, what an achievement – especially considering he had to carry that heart of gold the entire run.
Thank you Aldónio and Ana for going that extra mile (or 80kms!) and supporting our work by raising $2,205.25. We are grateful to all those who donated and share our vision for a kinder world.
That is just how our new little goaty friend found himself recently, and sadly way before his time. With the death of his mother sending his world into turmoil, the week old baby goat was taken to the local livestock produce store in the hope a safe and loving home could be found for him. Giving the young orphan at least one reason to smile was a kindly lady who happened to call by. Bundling up the wee waif, Smiley was soon Edgar’s Mission bound.
Did you know that male ducks are called drakes and females ducks are called, well, ducks. If you see a group of ducks they can be called a brace, raft, skiff, team, paddling, dopping or flock, depending on whether they are on the water, in the air or simply checking out the scenery. And if they get to live at Edgar’s Mission, they are very lucky ducks indeed. Just ask Count and Countess Quackula, our most recent feathered arrivals. A devoted pair of Khaki Campbell ducks are they, who had been abandoned by their one-time human carers – a senseless act we all too often see repeated over and over for hapless ducks. Not welcomed on public waterways and as a result of domestication they no longer have the ‘smarts’ or flight needed to survive in a world full of predators and dangers. Continue reading
Bo and Peep, are two tough little boys. Not even 24 hours old and they have already laid claim to our hearts. Having made room in our nursery for these wee ones it is now over to warm bottles of life enhancing and antibody rich colostrum we turn. Work to be done…
Taking the theatrical slang for ‘good luck’ all too literally was Gordon Goat recently. Having witnessed the removal of his two lady friends from his company whilst holed up at a country pound, the thought of living without his buddies proved too much for dear Gordon. Unwanted by his previous human carer, Gordon had been left behind, but he was not going to go down without a fight. Thrusting himself up, up and almost away, he became perilously stuck in the fence, leaving the hapless goat hanging by his leg for dear life.
With our recent influx of roosters over the past month, who else could we possibly dedicate our Campaign Action of the month to than our oft forgotten feathered friends. Sadly, we find that the plight of roosters is not something that crosses the minds of many in our society unless they are faced with it in their daily lives. And sadly, as is the case for many young chicks who have grown up and begun to crow, at this point it is often too late. Many kind and caring individuals unknowingly support or take part in activities that affect the lives of these hapless creatures and so, this month we are asking one and all to give our rooster buddies something to crow about. Here’s how: Continue reading
I don’t keep a diary, but if I did the entry for Wednesday 15th of July 2015 would go something like this.
Today was rough, really rough, for all the wrong reasons. It started at 2am; a time at which no good day should ever begin. But it wasn’t the wicked winds licking at my window that caused me to wake with chills travelling down my spine. No, it was the sight of little Ewok lying motionless in front of the warm heater, a hot water bottle propping him up and a blanket snugly tucking him in. The sickly little kid goat had been up against it from before he was surrendered into our care. The victim of a savage mauling some days earlier, little Ewok’s tail had been completely ripped off and bite marks, the painful legacy of a fox’s menacing canine teeth, covered his sweet little head. Right from the start though, it was clear that Ewok was a fighter. If not, he surely would never have survived thus far. Medication, pain relief and fluids were our first line of defence, quickly aided by warmth, love and the promise of a better life.
On the 19th of July Aldónio will be moving mountains – or more running an 80K mountain trail – for animals. This ain’t no walk in the park, yet Aldónio’s outlook is noble and inspiring.
He told Edgar’s Mission: “The 80K will definitely be a challenge. The longest I have ran so far is 50K, so this will be a step up. But I am confident that I can do it. I also know the pain that I will endure to accomplish this challenge does not come close to that of the millions of animals who are subject to human abuse and mistreatment. I will think of our animal friends and of their suffering to propel me forward.” Thank you Aldónio and Ana for believing in us and choosing to support our work, we’re humbled and will be cheering you on.
If you want to get behind Aldónio and donate as he embarks on this inspirational quest, hop onto his fundraising page. The site is Every Day Hero, and Aldónio certainly fits the bill.
The world is full of people with strong legs and kind hearts, we also have Anthony, Maria, Kristina, Jade, Elizabeth, Kristie, Maria, Helen, Rachel, and Kirsty fundraising through Run Melbourne. Thank you all for your dedication, hard work and for thinking of us!
A huge thanks to The Daily Mail for sharing the stories of some of our rescued orphaned lambs! Check it out here.
Those were the innocent words of a school age boy that threatened to break our hearts right there and then, in an instant. Faced with the grim, yet very real fact that for every hen brought into this world for her egg laying ability, nature dictates that a rooster too is born, this child like so many of us, simply did not want to face the reality of what happens to those 16 million day old roosters in our country today. And it is not only egg industry roosters that are considered ‘excess’ in today’s modern society for we humans in our wisdom, or lack thereof, bring chickens into our world through school and child care centre Hatching Projects, backyard hobby breeding and more, yet the places for these same roosters to turn are still few and far between. And so, to the kind hearted young boy on that day, we had to admit that no, we simply do not have room for all of the hapless roosters our world has no place for. To take care of sixteen roosters is an enormous undertaking in itself, let alone sixteen million. However, through a combination of luck, hard work and a recent working bee, we were recently able to provide sanctuary, space and a life worth living to not one but nine roosters in the past month. And while it may certainly only be a drop in the ocean, we continue to make our solemn vow to that kind young child and to all of those we cannot physically save, “We will tell your story.”
Into the fold of Edgar’s Mission we welcome: Continue reading
But not the type you might be thinking. No, that raucous squawking was not a bachelorette out celebrating her upcoming nuptials at Edgar’s Mission but rather seventeen new feathered friends making known their arrivals. From once beloved family members who sadly were unable to relocate to their carer’s new abode, to forgotten backyard hens and those abandoned in environments most unsuitable for a chicken, the past histories of our newly arrived hens are vast indeed. However, one thing they all have in common is that their stories stand as a reminder to one and all that we are responsible forevermore for the creatures we take into our world. And while sadly not all feathered ladies have a guardian angel watching over them, we indeed hope that the stories of those we are able to save inspire much needed change in the way people view these feathered beauties. To Edgar’s Mission, we welcome: Continue reading
Touching the hearts of many has been little Thursday Lamb. Surviving a horrific mauling the wee lass was left bloodied and dazed. It was only through finding her way on to a busy country road that she was to find her way to our sanctuary. For thankful are we that it was into the bright beam of a kind heart’s headlights she wandered on that dark and stormy night. The gut-wrenching sight of what was left of her ears was far better suited to a horror movie than a bleak chapter of a sweet young lambs life. Pretty much all the skin had been ripped from her ears leaving bleeding flaps. But nothing could keep this sweet girl down. Daily treatments and pain relief along with sweet smelling formula saw Thursday flourish into a happy, healthy and now almost earless little girl. For recently the eschar that was her left ear fell off in our hand!
But fear not for despite her now somewhat unusual appearance we love her none the less, in fact having survived such a horrific ordeal we cherish this sweet lamb even more. And so to do her 16 lamby buddies! And we are pleased to report that little Thursday’s nasty head wound has also cleared with no complications. Now the only thing complicated about this story is why oh why do dear little lambs get such a raw deal in our world. Continue reading
Our most recent lamby arrival comes with a truly remarkable tale, remarkable, not because of the kindness shown by the brave heart who secured this little lamb’s safety but remarkable because he even survived. Despite a severe weather alert being issued to farmers and graziers that unless preventative action was taken, the weekend’s weather posed a high risk to the lives of lambs and sheep and despite a Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act that includes in the definition of cruelty, “the failure to provide proper and sufficient shelter for animals,” little Remy almost froze to death. Born hours earlier he lay motionless on the icy, cold ground, unable to rise or feed from his mother. With his core temperature plummeting perilously south, it took everything in his rescuer’s power to save him. But save they did. Remy remarkably had beaten the odds, ensuring he was not one of the many, many little lambs who froze to death over the bitterly cold and frosty weekend.