Mike Lanigan was only a child when he moved to a farm with his family. An in the decades that followed, the huge freehold acted like many other farms, raising animals in order to sell their meat on the local market.

But after years of study and a stint as a forest ranger, Mike Lanigan decided that it was something to do something different.

He realised that the animal with whom he'd grown up had forged strong links and would perhaps like to grow old on this farm. He took this idea further, realising that he wanted to offer a  refuge to animals in need.

In other words, Mike Lanigan wanted to turn his farm into an animal sanctuary.

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"This is the first year where we haven't raised pigs or chickens," said Mike in a recent video filmed by Edith Barabash, who works with him at the Farmhouse Garden Animal Home', his sanctuary.

The farm houses 21 cows as well as horses, geese and a guard-donkey called Buckwheat.

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However, Mike is planning on getting them some more animals for company.

"I thought that we could start housing cows coming from the RSPCA or something like that."

Lanigan was, in part, inspired by an old worker that he had seen working for his father.

"I saw this old man, who was more than 90 years old, look after the calfs with so much love," said Mike.

Some years later, while Mike was helping a cow to give birth, he remembered this man. "I felt like a hypocrite, to give so much love to these animals only to have them die as they did," added Mike.

Of course, the road to building each sanctuary is paved with good intentions. But it is one thing to transform a farm into a sanctuary and another to feed all those hungry mouths. The farm, today at least, is not officially a sanctuary.

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"I don't have a deadline but the earlier the better. We need a lot of money to get started - feeding cows is extremely costly. However, we'll get there," said Edith Barabash.

On the other hand, the farmers also need to eat. Therefore Mike continues to plant vegetables ans sells his products at market as well as wood and maple syrup.

Mike Lanigan has a facebook page where you can follow his adventures or even make a donation!

What do you think about Mike's initiative?

source : thedodo

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