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We are so grateful

Thursday, November 24, 2016


This morning I took a walk around the Sanctuary before spending the holiday with my family. It is already cold here in the Hudson Valley, but cows love the wintery weather, and I saw Kayli and Dylan eating the last of the summer grass, pausing only to nuzzle each other. And of course I took some time to say hello to the turkeys, including my special favorites Beatrice and Tomoko – these beautiful animals fortunate enough to be here instead of on someone’s plate this Thanksgiving.  Then I stopped at our Animal Hospital where caregivers were feeding our special needs residents and making sure any sick or elderly animal who had spent the cold night inside would have every chance at a full recovery. There’s no time off for the caregiving staff who spend many holidays with the animals.

Today is Thanksgiving. But every day I am thankful to go to work and see the happy, rescued farmed animals who you have saved. It’s truly an honor for each of us here at Woodstock Farm Sanctuary to be able to rescue and care for them in your name.

Because of you, we’ve accomplished so much more than I ever thought possible over this last year, our first at this new sanctuary location. Your vision and dedication are the reasons we all have so much to be proud of…and why the Woodstock Sanctuary community has so much to be grateful for.

This year, we had our first births and welcomed the Tiniest Herd – 13 baby goats and two baby sheep, their mothers rescued from a backyard butcher just over a year ago – into a life of love and peace.

We rescued our first horse, a sweet, beautiful colt named Trident, whose only hope of escaping the kill floor rested in our hands. Now, he is happily bucking and prancing on his new state-of-the-art prosthetic brace.

In fact, we’ve rescued more large animals in the past year than in any comparable period in our history.

Woodstock Sanctuary reaches far beyond our wooded sanctuary boundaries — as we save countless lives through giving powerful educational experiences that create compassionate connections between visitors and the rescued animals living here. It’s a privilege to be part of transformative work that opens hearts and awakens so many people to a new way of relating to the animal world.

All of us are part of that work. We could not do it without you. Whether you’re volunteering for the animals, making donations to a sanctuary, rescuing individual animals, or advocating and educating, I want to convey our thanks and appreciation.

I’ve been fortunate to serve the animal cause for decades now. Yet Woodstock is special. Having had the honor of leading the organization all year, I’ve learned what truly distinguishes this precious sanctuary. It’s the animals like Kayli and Dylan. It’s the caregivers who are up at dawn on a holiday to care for their charges. And it’s this authentic community of activists and animal lovers. It’s you.

Over and over again, your generosity of spirit inspires all of us at the Sanctuary, as our shared commitment spares so many innocent lives.

I wish you and yours a very Happy Thanksgiving. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for making a real difference for farmed animals here at the Sanctuary and around the world.


For the animals,

Jeff Lydon


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