At the gates of a Farm Sanctuary shelter, you will encounter a sign that reads, “You are now entering the animals’ sanctuary. Please remember that you are a guest in their home.” Over the years, thousands of guests have passed beyond those gates to discover a world like no other.
In the world outside our shelters, multitudes of farm animals are killed for food, having spent their brief, miserable lives unknown and unseen by the people who think of them as only meat on their plates. More than nine billion land animals are slaughtered every year in the United States alone. In the face of this overwhelming statistic, it can be hard to know how to begin to make a difference. At Farm Sanctuary shelters, however, we begin with the basics — one person and one animal, meeting each other. This simple event can motivate a person to change the way he or she lives, and when that decision takes root, it begins to change things for farm animals. In fact, every person who chooses a meat-free life style saves dozens of land animals each year. If that same person shares his or her experiences as a vegetarian or vegan and influences others, that impact is multiplied!
That’s why we want as many people as possible to interact with farm animals — not just those who can visit our New York Shelter in Watkins Glen, our Northern California Shelter in Orland, or our Southern California Shelter near Los Angeles, but people all over the country and the world. To that end, our new website brings the Farm Sanctuary experience to web visitors like never before.
On this newly designed site, vivid photo and video galleries present life at the shelters and let visitors get to know the animals who call Farm Sanctuary home. You will observe our residents in moments of tenderness and play (not to mention mischief!), watch them heal from past suffering, and celebrate their new lives. We love caring for these unique individuals, and we’re thrilled that we’ll be able to introduce them to everyone who visits us online.
The site is also home to Someone, Not Something. This new project presents scientific research supporting what we know intuitively from working with farm animals every day: These creatures possess intelligence, emotions, and individual personalities; they have preferences; they form relationships. To illustrate these facts, we will also share the stories of more of the amazing animals who live at our shelters. Through their perceptiveness, generosity, friendship, and love of life, these animals exhibit fundamental feelings and needs akin to our own: Throughout their lives with us, farm animals know some of noblest experiences that we associate with being human.
At Farm Sanctuary, animals once fearful and feeble are transformed into strong and joyful individuals who enrich each other’s lives as herd mates, family members, and companions. When people see this for themselves, they are often transformed as well. They are inspired to change their habits, live with greater compassion, and more keenly embody their own ideals. The work of a sanctuary is not only to provide a refuge from what is harsh and unjust in the world; it is also to help all of us — rescued animals, caregivers, visitors, and friends near and far — become our best selves.
So please explore our new website and find a little sanctuary. You are now entering the animals’ home. Welcome!