Imagine being surrounded by hundreds of sick and injured baby animals and only being able to save a fraction of them. That’s the incredible heartache the women behind two of the nation’s most well-known animal rescue organizations experience on a regular basis.
Leanne Lauricella, founder of Goats of Anarchy, and Caitlin Cimini, founder of Rancho Relaxo, recently embarked on one of their most emotional trips yet. Loaded up with six tubs and crates of bedding, they drove two and a half hours from their New Jersey-based homes to a barn they knew would be full of baby sheep and goats who had just been ripped away from their mothers. And they also knew choosing “the lucky ones,” as Cimini puts it, would be absolutely agonizing.
After arriving at the barn, the scene was devastating. Because there’s no need for the babies after they’re born, they’re immediately sold to auctions. This time around, a batch was bought by a sale barn that then resells them to be slaughtered. With most goats and lambs being a couple days to a couple weeks old, many were understandably ill without the care of their mothers and their lives were slipping away. And numerous lives had already been lost.
These babies are here because of dairy… ripped from their mothers after birth so their milk can be sold. We don't even know how many we took, but we think around 25. @boochaces and I are meeting @barnyardsanctuary and @freedomfarm_animalrescue who are joining in this rescue. They are all sick, some are dying. I am taking 3. I should not be taking 3 but I couldn't leave them behind. One has pink eye so bad it looks like he will lose at least one eye. One has contracted tendons and has trouble walking and the third, in this video was smothered under a pile of babies. The woman gave him to us for free because she said he will most likely die. The other one in this video will die soon so we didn't take him. Please follow @boochaces, @barnyardsanctuary @freedomfarm_animalrescue to see updates on their babies and donate towards much needed medical care if you can.
After picking as many babies as they could, Cimini and Lauricella ended up with 26 animals that won’t experience cruelty ever again. But having to leave behind more than 100 babies — some they became attached to but couldn’t save — this mission was an especially tough one.
Even though they got home in the wee hours of the morning, the work has just begun for these brave women. Taking care of malnourished and injured goats and lambs requires around-the-clock care and some lives have already been lost. But there is hope. And even though a handful weren’t able to make it, at least they were able to die in the arms of people who would do anything to make them happy.
With The Barnyard Sanctuary and Freedom Farm Animal Rescue stepping in to help, there are only good things to come from this rescue. Stay updated with the animals’ progress on Instagram, and if you’re interested in donating to help cover medical costs of the sick and injured, follow the links below.
- To donate to Goats of Anarchy, click here.
- To donate to Rancho Relaxo, click here.
- To donate to The Barnyard Sanctuary, click here.
- To donate to Freedom Farm Animal Rescue, click here.