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Emmett—Forever in Our Hearts

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

emmett-buttonRescued from the auction block with his brother Jasper, adorable little Emmett was an unwanted by-product of the dairy goat industry. Just like veal calves, male goats are of no value to a dairy operation since they don’t produce milk. Emmett and his brother were pulled from their mother, likely to be sold off as cheap “kid meat.” Luckily for these boys and for us, the farmer had a change of heart and offered them to a woman he knew was fond of goats—and that woman then called us.

Emmett and his twin brother Jasper

Emmett and his twin brother Jasper

At just a few days old, the two brothers arrived at the Sanctuary. They had recently been disbudded, a painful standard industry practice where an 800-degree tool is used to cauterize their horns without anesthesia. Luckily, this bad memory quickly faded for Emmett and Jasper once they realized they were now in a place that would love and care for them the way they deserved.

Unfortunately, Emmett and his brother had been diagnosed with Caprine Arthritic Encephalitis (CAE), a lifelong virus in goats that can cause severe and crippling joint pain without aggressive treatment. But, Emmett didn’t let that slow him down.

Emmett and his best friend Star

Emmett and his best friend Star

Emmett would often be seen romping around our old Sanctuary grounds with his best friend Star to greet visitors and volunteers. It wasn’t uncommon to see him sunning himself in the grass in front of the Visitor Center, lounging on a bench or picnic table, or sneaking fruits and vegetables off wheelbarrows for an afternoon snack. He had an incredibly kind and patient demeanor—an old soul—that was infectious to anyone who met him, especially children.

Emmett and his sweet friend Emily who loves to visit him

Emmett and his sweet friend Emily who loves to visit him

Ezra takes a snooze with Emmett

Caregiver Hervé spends time with Emmett

Caregiver Hervé spends time with Emmett in the Sanctuary Hospital

In July of 2016, Emmett developed a serious infection in his back leg from the CAE. The infection had caused painful swelling and an open sore, making it even more difficult for him to move around. He was moved into our Sanctuary Hospital, where we kept a close eye on him every minute of the day, giving him daily treatments, and trying everything we could to clear up the infection.

Leslie, a long-time volunteer and past intern who especially bonded with Emmett, drove hours to be with him once we told her of his condition. She sat with him for hours, comforting him and reading him children’s books. We even found Leslie reading sleeping right next to Emmett later that evening—the two sharing a pillow and blanket.

Leslie spends the night with Emmett

Leslie spends the night

Despite our best efforts, Emmett’s health quickly declined in the first few weeks of September.

Emmett brought joy and laughter to so many and will be dearly missed. He lived a happy, peaceful life and left the world in the arms of those who love him—a gift so rarely given to a male goat from the dairy industry. We are devastated over the loss of our dear friend, but know he is now reunited with his brother Jasper and best friend Star. Rest in peace, sweet boy. We love you.

Please help us remember Emmett by making a donation in his memory. Share a story or kind words about him along with your donation in his honor.



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