Visiting the Farm Sanctuary - My Ah-Ha Moment!
During my West Coast Road Trip, I had the honour of visiting the Farm Sanctuary "Animal Acres" near Los Angeles, California. It was a life-changing experience and I can't wait to share that with you. This has been one of the biggest highlights for me along this road trip. Going plant-based was my own personal journey as an athlete. My body is at it's best when I'm fueling with plants. I also love animals, not just pets, but all animals. Whatever you choose to do, it's your life and your choices, I would encourage you to be aware.
A little about the farm, Farm Sanctuary is an American animal protection organization, founded in 1986 as an advocate for farm animals by Gene Baur. It was America's first shelter for farm animals. It promotes laws and policies that support animal welfare, animal protection, and vegetarianism/veganism through rescue, education, and advocacy. Farm Sanctuary houses over 800 cows, chickens, ducks, geese, turkeys, pigs, sheep, rabbits, and goats at a 175-acre animal sanctuary in Watkins Glen, New York. They also house over 400 farm animals at a 300-acre sanctuary in Orland, California. The "animal acres" facility that I visited is their newest sanctuary.
Ignorance is not bliss and I did find it very important to visit this sanctuary as a reminder to my "WHY". My "WHY" is the reason I became a Vegan in the first place, health, environment, and ethics.
Something I found interesting was when I met Juniper (the pig in my main image) she had sunscreen behind her ears. Usually, pigs don't need sunscreen because they're in cages and shelters that are overcrowded with other pigs in pure darkness. Not anymore, now Juniper is out exposed to the sun, which is a welcome change. What I realized from this is that pigs are just like us, their skin is sensitive. Pigs actually outperform 3-year-old human children on cognition tests and are smarter than any domestic animal, and animal experts consider them more trainable than cats or dogs. An interesting fact about chickens that I learned was that they dream! All birds go through a similar sleep process as humans, REM (rapid eye movement that indicates dreaming).
I am looking forward to working further with the Farm Sanctuary and becoming more involved with the Animal welfare community. There's a lot of pressure put on people who are making the move to a more plant-based/Vegan lifestyle. All you can do it try your best and elevate your level of awareness. Watch the documentaries, read the books, listen to the podcasts, knowledge is power.
Health is Happiness!