Edgar’s Mission Passport
Eleanor & Ohio
Eleanor & Ohio
10th May 2023
Opening our hearts
Being together
Sweet & courageous
Certified true likeness
Eleanor & Ohio’s story

Eleanor Had a Wish

Updated June 2, 2023

The heart-warming story of a grieving mother who found a reason for living in her adopted son.

Through Eleanor’s ill-health she lost her babies. This must surely be every mother’s worst nightmare.

With this, along with a huge udder of milk she had made for them and her compromised state of health that had robbed her of her ability to walk, things were grim. Regardless, we soldiered on when our new friend arrived into our care.

With a sling to support her form, good nutrition and medications to heal and help her body, and all of our love and kindness, we knew it would be a battle to pull her through; for she, a mother, had all but lost her will to live.

And then a reason came her way.

We named him Ohio and prayed for a miracle that the two would bond

A teeny, tiny baby boy who had recently lost his mother. We named him Ohio and prayed for a miracle that the two would bond, for each held within them just what the other needed.

And although we had other older orphans at the sanctuary at the time, it was when Eleonor spied the itty-bitty Ohio she shuffled her feet in her sling, attempting to rise as she let out the softest and sweetest of nickers his way.

One that only a loving mother could.

At first confused by the newness of the situation he found himself in, Ohio didn’t know exactly what to do. And so we gently guided him to Eleanor’s engorged teats. He fumbled about with all of the awkwardness of a newborn lamb. Something that always leaves us in awe as to how any newborn lamb manages to survive.

Although we persisted,

alas Ohio did not. As he walked away, our hearts sank, not because of the extra task we would now incur hand-feeding another precious waif, but because of the sadness that flooded Eleanor.

A sadness that pierced our ears and our hearts as she called for the baby she so desperately wanted to fill the void in her world.

And then we had an idea.

Ohio had already been bottle fed several times prior to his arrival at sanctuary, and so to a bottle we went. Offering it to the wee chap, he drank with all of the vigour a hungry lamb does when he knows just what to do. And so with a sleight of hand, we manoeuvred the bottle between Eleanor’s hind legs and right next to the now-bursting teat.


This light-bulb moment for Ohio sent a flood of tears to our eyes and joy to our hearts like nothing we have ever experienced. And as if that was not enough to bring us to our knees, the unforgettable moment when Eleanor softly turned her head towards her new son, as comfort and love became her face, surely did.

Even though Eleanor did not carry Ohio for the five-month pregnancy period that brought him into being, you can bet your bottom dollar she loves him as though she did. And even when he outgrows the need for her sweet breast milk, we know he will never outgrow her heart.

On this Mother’s Day, please remember this: that mothers come in all shapes, sizes and species, and whether those babies they love, raise and tend are their own or not, they love them just the same.

It is a popular thought, yet, thankfully a diminishing one, that non-human animals are automatons, feelingless beings who are not significantly impacted by their circumstances, especially the ones we humans so callously or even thoughtlessly impose upon them. Yet over and over, we see the evidence this is not correct; science too now supports this view.

That dear Eleanor, upon losing her babies, had a wish, and that the motherless Ohio was to become it, is yet more compelling proof.