Below are some of the Safe Haven animals who have touched our hearts before passing on. We remember their lives and how they found love and compassion at Safe Haven Farm Sanctuary.
Firefly and his friend Baelfire were born on a nearby farm and raised as 4H projects by 2 children. When it was time to send them to slaughter, the children objected so they were moved to a farm where they lived outside in a small pen with little shelter for 2 years. They only had human contact once a day at feeding time. Safe Haven was contacted when the family no longer wanted them and couldn’t find anyone willing to care for them. We welcomed them to the sanctuary in November of 2019. Firefly was a magnificent, affectionate and beautiful boy. He loved attention from his human friends. He had CAE (Caprine Arthritis Encephalitis) which led to pulmonary fibrosis. He passed away in October of 2023 in his stall with Baelfire and his caretakers by his side. He is sorely missed.
Jenny and her friend Sophie were rescued from a live market in NYC in November of 2020. The workers at the market gave them to activists who were bearing witness at their market. The rescuers contacted our sanctuary and we were happy to welcome these precious babies to our family. The vet came the following morning to do a complete exam. The turkeys were very young and small and facing some health challenges. Jenny was very sick with parasites and a joint infection. Due to the joint infection, she had trouble standing. She was brave, resilient and determined and did not let her challenges stop her from enjoying her days. She sadly passed away in September of 2023.
Scarlett and her friends Nicholas, Noah and Savannah (the “Fantastic Four”) arrived at Safe Haven in the summer of 2019. They came from an egg hatching project at a school in Armonk, NY. As often happens with hatched baby ducks and chicks, placement of the babies fell through and the school really had no idea what to do. One of the teachers found us online and contacted us. They really had no other possibilities so we took the babies at nearly 2 weeks of age. Scarlett experienced multiple hematomas which left her foot and leg deformed. Despite her physical challenges, she was an independent little lady. She was brave and gentle and loved by her caretakers. She passed away in September of 2023.
Jeremy had 11 peaceful years at Safe Haven, but his start in life was very difficult. He came to Safe Haven in 2012 with his mother, Samantha, and his adoptive sister, Jillian. They were living in an abusive farming situation in Western New York and were near starvation. They survived the worst treatment their rescuers had ever seen. When the sheep family first arrived at our sanctuary, they were understandably very afraid of humans. We gained their trust with kindness and a gentle touch. Before the years started to catch up with him, Jeremy was an enthusiastic and inquisitive sheep and the first to approach if he thought you may have a treat. Jeremy passed in August of 2023 and it was an incredibly sad day. We felt some comfort knowing he was surrounded by the love and respect he deserved for all of his days with us. It was our privilege to care for him. Our caretakers were right by his side when he passed. Sweet dreams Jeremy.
Korra was rescued by the folks at Humane Long Island. She fell off a slaughterhouse-bound truck in early July of 2022. She was found in distress on the side of a highway. Her rescuers brought her to their shelter where they cared for her until they could find her a forever home. She arrived at Safe Haven with some foot issues and received all the necessary medical attention she required. Korra was a very lively turkey and enthusiastic about everything. She was always busy investigating her surroundings! We miss her terribly.
Carmela arrived at Safe Haven just two days before Thanksgiving in 2018. She was nameless and destined for slaughter. Due to the heroic actions of compassionate individuals who rescued her from a Brooklyn slaughterhouse, she was spared the fate of becoming Thanksgiving dinner. Here at Safe Haven, she lived a life surrounded by respect and kindness. Carmela was a hoot! She was fun and daring and a favorite of staff and visitors alike. She passed away in May of 2023 and is sorely missed by all.
Abby arrived in the summer of 2016 at approximately a week old. Abby was one of 4 baby turkeys that arrived by car. These babies sadly had many health issues and did not live long lives despite several trips to the vet. Abby managed to thrive and lived to be almost 7 years old. We were privileged to have her as part of our farm family. She was a beautiful girl, observant, curious and loved to explore. She passed away in April of 2023 and we miss her gentle soul.
In March of 2023, sweet Samantha crossed the rainbow bridge. She arrived at Safe Haven in 2012 with her son Jeremy and adopted daughter Jillian. Samantha and her children survived unspeakable hardship, the three of them were nearly starved and Jillian’s mother had died. They were understandably very wary of human animals and we always respected their boundaries. But slowly, over time, Samantha and her children grew to trust us. It was a gift being able to see these three flourish in a safe home and see Samantha dote on her kids. She was a nurturing and phenomenal mother. We miss this beautiful, gentle soul.
In September of 2022, our hearts broke when we had to say goodbye to our precious girl Missy. She was gentle and demure and was described by one caretaker as “royal” – she certainly was our princess. We are able to find some solace in knowing she had so many peaceful years at our sanctuary and was surrounded by love when she crossed the rainbow bridge. In 2011, Missy was headed for slaughter because she was unable to produce live offspring for two consecutive years. Fortunately, her owner was willing to relinquish Missy to Safe Haven. Initially, she was quite shy since her sole contact with humans was as a commodity. She never received a gentle touch, a scratch behind her ears, or even a special treat. She quickly learned that at Safe Haven she would experience all of the above – and here, the humans were committed to her well being and happiness.
Click here to watch a sweet video collage of moments and memories of Missy and her friend Dorothy (below).
Dorothy and her son arrived in May of 2013. They were due to be slaughtered on a farm in Sleepy Hollow, NY. On most production farms, Dorothy would have been kept for breeding and her offspring would have been sent to slaughter within the first few months of life. Here at Safe Haven, Dorothy was able to raise her son and Clifford was able to enjoy his mother’s love. Dorothy was an incredible mom and always kept a close eye on her boy. She was also an adoptive mama to many the orphaned sheep babies that call Safe Haven home and provided them with the much needed motherly love and attention they craved.
Trinity arrived in August of 2014. This petite cutie was one of 20 turkeys left in a box at the entrance to Farm Sanctuary in Watkins Glen, NY. They were most likely rescued from a factory farm as their feathers were all white and their beaks were cut to prevent them from pecking and damaging the skin of the other turkeys kept in crowded sheds.
This petite cutie was independent and sassy. She passed away in July of 2022. Trinity was the eldest of the Turkey bunch here at the sanctuary and very protective of her family. Her age and small stature did not diminish her spunky spirit, even towards the end. We are grateful we were able to care for Trinity for eight years, especially given other turkeys like her are typically slaughtered as babies at only five months old. We will honor her legacy by continuing to help turkeys in need.
Collecting eggs is a routine and daily practice at the sanctuary – but Chicken Little, Chuck and Charlotte’s mom, was very clever at finding secret places to lay her eggs! One morning, a volunteer discovered she had laid eggs under a staircase. Soon after, two beautiful chicks were born. The volunteer who discovered Chicken Little’s eggs under the loft fell in love with Chuck and Charlotte as soon as she laid eyes on them, gave up eating chicken the day they were born, and is now a long-time member of our dedicated staff.
Chuck was an incredibly regal and stately rooster and he was true royalty here at Safe Haven. It was our privilege to provide him with the long, full, free, and happy life all roosters deserve. He was surrounded by love and was held in the arms of one of our devoted caretakers when he passed. This special rooster is missed beyond words.
Barney arrived in 2015. He was a sweet white house rabbit who was abandoned in a park on the Queens-Long Island border. He was found along with a beautiful black bunny friend named Al. They were very fortunate to be rescued by a veterinary technician who was walking in the park. Barney and his friend Al shared a comfortable room at Safe Haven where they enjoyed plenty of toys and treats during the winter. In the warm months, they had fun in their own outdoor play area. Barney passed away in August of 2021 – we are grateful he was able to enjoy several years of peace and love on the farm.
In the summer of 2014, Milo and his mom Bessie were rescued from a backyard in Coney Island, NY. They are dairy goats who were being kept illegally and facing slaughter. Typically, male kids are slaughtered since they can’t produce milk and are an expense to keep. Bessie and Milo were seized by NYC Animal Control and Safe Haven welcomed them with open arms. Milo was incredibly sweet and gentle in nature, just like his mom. He passed away in June of 2021. Saying goodbye to our “best boy” was one of the most difficult days we’ve ever had at Safe Haven. We deeply miss our beautiful friend and his gentle greetings whenever we entered the pasture.
Daffy was a Muscovy duck, a breed usually raised for food or for making fois gras. He was lucky to escape life on a factory farm but he was living with some chickens in a pen down the road from Safe Haven, and when we would drive by, we would often see a raccoon in the pen. We worried about the safety of the chickens and Daffy and convinced the owner to relinquish the whole group to Safe Haven.
At our sanctuary, Daffy spent his days exploring and swimming in the duck pool. He was an inquisitive duck and always curious about his surroundings. His most endearing quality was his protective nature and how he always looked after his favorite girl and duck friend, Lola.
Basil was very leery of human contact when she first arrived at Safe Haven. With lots of gentle care and kindness from our dedicated staff, she learned to trust the humans who loved and adored her. Basil lived a beautiful life at our sanctuary, free from fear and worry. One of our favorite things about her is that she always looked like she was smiling. Her absence has left a huge hole in our hearts.
Bogie was a friendly and brave rooster who was very protective of his hens. Staff members referred to him as a “gentleman”. He arrived in the Fall of 2016. He began life in a middle school hatching project. A teacher ordered six fertilized eggs from a company to show students how chickens hatch and grow, but the teacher didn’t consider what to do with the chicks when the school year ended.
A parent got in touch with an animal lover who contacted our farm animal sanctuary, and we adopted the chicks. Although Bogie was lucky to find a home at Safe Haven, most chicks raised in school hatching projects are destined to have an unhappy ending. The schools are often unable to find anyone willing to assume responsibility for caring for the chicks throughout their lifetime. Sadly, chicks are sent back to the company they were purchased from, and they are killed. We are glad we were able to provide Bogie with the free and happy life he deserved. He passed away in March of 2021.
Milly came to us in November of 2018 at the age of three months, after getting into azalea bushes that are poisonous to goats. Her owner did not have the means to pay for Milly’s care. After nine days in the hospital, Milly came home to Safe Haven.
Young Milly had a cough that lingered from her hospital stay, but we were able to help her with a portable nebulizer. It wasn’t long before her cough disappeared, and she joined the goat herd. For two years, she was always the first one out of the barn in the morning, and she loved playing with the other animals as well as her favorite human caretaker who had held her on his lap for her treatments.
In December of 2020, Milly developed rapid breathing and fever. Several vet visits and two courses of antibiotics and other medications did not help. Even special care for a week in the hospital at Cornell did not restore her to good health.
Milly was loved by all. She was a feisty little goat with a huge personality and huge ears to match. Her energy and enthusiasm for life will be sorely missed.
Keme was rescued by two compassionate people who saw him huddled near the curb on a busy street in Queens. He was most likely a house rabbit who was abandoned outdoors. He surely would have been killed by predators or a moving vehicle if he had not been rescued. We welcomed Keme to our family in March 2016. He was a sweet and curious bunny. He had a happy life here at Safe Haven where he enjoyed the comfort of his indoor room during the winter months and his outdoor play area where he hopped around and explored the grass during the warm weather months. We will miss this beautiful little fuzzy fella.
Although small in stature, Violet had a big heart and made a huge impact on all who knew her. Her grace and gentle demeanor inspired everyone she met. She was a favorite of sanctuary visitors who loved to pose for photos with her. She had the absolute cutest smile of all time.
Life at the sanctuary will not be the same without her adorable underbite and soulful eyes there to greet us but we will honor her memory every single day by giving those in need a safe place to land, exemplary care and all the love imaginable. She passed away in July of 2020.
Emma was an incredible turkey who lived to be 10 1/2 years old – a true miracle and inspiration. Those of you who have visited Safe Haven know that Emma was our queen and the anchor of our front barn. Turkeys raised on factory farms for food are slaughtered at about 4 months of age and those who make it to a sanctuary usually live 3 – 6 years. We were so lucky and privileged to have her as part of our farm family for so long.
Because of her gentle ways, visitors, especially children, were drawn to Emma. She gave many people their first opportunity, not only to see that she endured a cut off beak and toes in preparation for a short life on a factory farm, but also to feel her soft feathers, look into her deep dark eyes and wrap their arms around her for a hug. Emma especially enjoyed basking in the sun at the entrance of her barn. The farm will never be the same without her beautiful presence. She passed in June of 2019.
Chava was truly something special. She was rescued in 2012, when a prominent Brooklyn rabbi realized the inhumane treatment of chickens in a religious ritual and decided to give up 2 chickens to members of the Alliance Against Kaporos. This little chicken was given the name Chava which means “life” in Hebrew. Chava was a true fighter and battled through many health challenges in her life. She inspired us with her ability to endure so much and never complain. Chava felt the love and care from her human friends and knew they would do anything to help her through each obstacle she faced. She was our warrior. Our entire staff admired her strength, and as she overcame each challenge, one of our long time staff members would say “she is my hero”. Co-founder Ellen Crain said “It feels like a little light has gone out on our farm.” Chava passed away in the fall of 2018. We will never forget her courage.
In 2013, EJ was found splashing around in a family’s swimming pool on Long Island. He was a Muscovy duck and part of his beak had been cut off indicating he was being raised for meat and destined for slaughter. When he arrived at Safe Haven, he immediately brought tons of personality to our Back Barn area. He would grab onto our pant legs to get our attention as we cleaned the barn! He passed away in February of 2018. He touched our hearts and we hope he is now eternally splashing in his pool and exploring the big pasture in the sky.
Silky was born February 7, 2016 on a production farm, destined to be a breeder sheep or sold for meat. Her mom was a bit too vigorous in her attempts to get her to stand, so she sustained three broken legs. The vet who cared for her asked if we could take her and her twin sister, Satin. Silky lived her life at Safe Haven Farm Sanctuary, enjoying her sister, the sun and the loving care she deserves.
Claria’s gentle demeanor and concern for her fellow sheep made her a favorite at the farm. She enjoyed a good scratch behind the ears and delighted in exploring her surroundings at Safe Haven. She joined our family during the winter of 2010, having survived a history of abuse and confinement. She passed away in April 0f 2016.
Amos was rescued by a compassionate person in a nearby town. The little rooster had a deformed leg and was being chased and pecked by 4 other roosters who lived in the yard. The little rooster would run under the man’s deck where, if he was lucky, he would be able to eat some cat food and would only come out of his hiding place at night.
The owner agreed to give up the rooster if the man could find a home. Fearing that the little rooster’s life was at stake, we eagerly welcomed him to Safe Haven. The vet found him to be in good health but because his owner had neglected his leg abnormality for so long, it could no longer be repaired.
Amos gets around pretty well and has joined a group of hens. This is the first time in his life that Amos has not feared for his life. He lived at Safe Haven enjoying the company of other chickens, taking dirt baths and resting in the warm sun like chickens should be able to do.
Beyoncé is a beautiful Plymouth Rock hen who escaped from a live market in Brooklyn and hid in a nearby vacant lot surrounded by a high chain link fence. She survived there for nearly two weeks until she was rescued by some caring humans who brought her to Safe Haven. Here she was able to enjoy life and never be afraid again.
Her rescuers named her Beyoncé because she is from Brooklyn and she is a survivor!
Big Red ran out of a live market in Queens practically into the waiting arms of an off-duty NYC policewoman who was walking by. She took Big Red home to her apartment and then brought the little rooster to Safe Haven. When Big Red arrived, he was just a tiny chick.
Over the next few months Big Red surprised us all by growing into a handsome, huge rooster. He was the largest rooster at Safe Haven.
This colorful little bantam rooster was left at a local park by a petting zoo, who decided that it would be easier to replace him than to try and catch him. Luckily, we were able to come to his rescue before a hungry animal found him.
Although shy at first, Burdock has become more comfortable around his human companions and has enjoyed spending time hanging out with his new friend Kate.
Here is a story our co-founder shared on the radio about Daisy. “Hello, this is Bill Crain from Safe Haven Farm Sanctuary, in nearby Poughquag. Each month I tell you a story about one or more of the animals we have rescued. Today the story will be about an old mini-Goat, Daisy, who recently passed away. We adopted Daisy, along with two of her companions, from a family who was moving to Maine and didn’t feel they could take care of their goats any longer. When we adopted Daisy she was already well along in years, but she was still active. Daisy was a fascinating goat, but I’m not going to tell you about her. Instead, I would like to turn the microphone over to Joy Gomez, our head caretaker, who quickly fell in love with Daisy. Joy feels that she learned a great deal about life from this goat, and I concur!” You can read more about lessons from Daisy here.
Sprinkles the sheep was found in a live market in the Bronx in a pen crowded with animals awaiting slaughter. Her ears were missing their tips, evidence of frostbite from having been kept outside in a bitter winter cold. She also had many parasites and a bad cough, and made no natural sheep sounds.
Since coming to Safe Haven, Sprinkles lost her parasites, and her cough, and started “baa-ing” like a natural sheep. She also enjoyed a good scratch behind her ears and going out in the sun with her pal, Angel. When you entered the barn, Sprinkles was often the first one to come up and say hi, showing us all that she has learned to trust again. Sprinkles died on December 26, 2015 in the Safe Haven barn with her best friend, Angel, at her side.
Lucy was rescued in September 2011 by two compassionate graduate students. She had been packed into a crate with other chickens awaiting a Kaporos ritual in Brooklyn and had numerous cuts and injuries and an infected foot. The young men took her home and nursed her back to health in their apartment, but the landlord threatened to not renew their lease if the students didn’t get the chicken out of the apartment. Safe Haven came to the rescue, and on November 1, 2011, Lucy was welcomed with open arms by owners Bill and Ellen and caretakers Karen and Mary. The sweet hen arrived in a box and we could not wait to introduce her to her new family.
Despite her orthopedic problems, Lucy has flourished at Safe Haven. She couldn’t do everything that she wished—her legs were too twisted to roost well—but she enjoyed foraging about and resting with our rooster and another hen.
Roly was a special soul who was loved by all. It is hard to believe that she was nearly thrown out before she could hatch at the end of the school year. She was one of several eggs sent by mistake for a chick hatching project on nearly the last day of school. Roly was saved by a thoughtful 12 year old and his parents who took the abandoned eggs home to their apartment in Brooklyn.
Roly hatched on June 10, 2010. At a month of age, Roly came to live at Safe Haven where she could play and forage in the grass, dust bathe and get to know other chickens. She was the queen of the Safe Haven barn. Roly always greeted you as you entered the barn and selectively decided if your shoes deserved her attention. If they did, she would skillfully try to untie shoelaces or remove any type of design.
Roly served as an ambassador for all those baby chicks who weren’t lucky enough to survive the chick hatching projects. She reminded us all that animals are not disposable objects but sentient beings that deserve lifelong care. She may have left this world but she will forever be in our hearts. Roly Poly passed away on December 25, 2014 from medical complications.
Katie was brought to Safe Haven three years ago by a young couple who had purchased her at a live meat market. They wanted Katie to be their pet but their landlord objected, so they asked us if we would take her.
Katie was a very special chicken. Right away we noticed how the other chickens liked being near Katie, and she often tried to protect the others.
The most surprising behavior Bill Crain saw occurred one afternoon when he was upset about a personal event. He felt a little like crying when he entered the aviary. Katie walked directly toward him, looked directly into his eyes, and sat quietly beside his leg. Bill felt sure she was trying to comfort him.
We often hear the term “mother hen,” but we never knew how caring and protective a hen can be. All of us at Safe Haven will miss Katie very much. Katie died on May 30, 2011.