All the Right Things…
Meet Opal, a wee little lamb who, although her condition remains critical and our hopes guarded, is doing all the right things.
Found days ago, almost frozen on the ground, Opal could well have been mistaken for a frost-covered rock.
But she was not.
For she moved just a bit. It was all she could muster in her long-weakened state. Fortuitous this was, as it was just enough for a kind heart to trace their gaze to her pitiful form. With the ripple effect then felt in this very heart, Opal was rushed to veterinary care, where shock treatment and revival procedures were immediately commenced.
With the thoughts, “She’s so tiny” and “She is so precious” vying in our minds, we quickly determined that her teeny skeletal frame was not a reflection of her age, but alas the living echo of Opal’s struggle to survive without her dear mumma’s love and sweet sustenance.
Stunted in growth, but not in spirit, she clearly was.
And so she soldiered on against adversity, uncomplainingly so, as all too many lambs sadly do.
Fearful that our shining new gem may not even make it through that first night, we held vigil with her. Stroking her gentle face as she melted into our hand, and telling her all would be well (our other hand behind our back bearing our crossed fingers), we held court with this humble being. Touched by her innocence and moved by her circumstance, we pledged to do everything in our, and veterinary science’s, power to make things right for Opal.
And in the days and nights that followed, little Opal has teetered and tottered right along with them. Her stomach was so prematurely changed that a true ruminant she now is. She was thus not able to digest the milk formula that would have otherwise sustained an infant such as she.
Nibbling now on the nourishment of sweet grass, hay, lamb pellets and (not to mention) our hearts too, we are pleased to report Opal is moving in the right direction. Albeit ever so slowly. For she carries with her not only the burden of her past, but the burden of her species. A burden that dictates her circumstance prevails across many a field in our country.
A great place to start to do this is through the simple act of changing the way we think about the animals labelled “farm”, “food” or “production”. Whilst this will not change the animal in any way, shape or form, it will most certainly change our relationship with them.
And it will change us as well.
It will change us to be more human and more humane. It will enable us, just like Opal who so readily took to us, to love without limits, to see beyond differences and find a commonality in all living beings. And in doing so, we too will be doing all the right things to unearth the best of our humanity.
After a night so long it almost forgot to end, we caught some sleep, grabbed a snack and headed on our well-worn track to the barn.
There was no doubt that Berlin’s world was crumbling the day he and his three buddies were surrendered into our care.
With a haunting sadness in their eyes, Gracelyn and Elvira entered our world. And we theirs, as they searched their newfound digs for somewhere to land their gaze.
Lost in a world far, far bigger than himself was little Bahama. But then kindness found him.
Little Kokomo may have been down on his luck the day he was born, finding himself way down in a pile of mirky mud.
Words could not convey our shock when we went to our carpark to collect the little lamb we would soon name Bermuda, who was surrendered into our care after having been found the day before.
More than likely destined for backyard slaughter, the young Cedric ran for his life. And did so for several days in the off-leash dog park to which he had retreated.
Friend or freezer? Without even meeting the colourful chap we have named Tom Cruise, we knew the only role he should ever fill was the first.
At just one day old, teeny tiny Trapper John was diminutive in size yet formidable in impact, and everybody was talking about him.