In March of 2006 Hog Heaven Rescue Farm received an e-mail expressing concern about the amount of animals listed on our Memorial page. This response by founder Regina Martin is here for anyone else to read who may have concerns.
When we take in animals that have been neglected and/or abused, their bodies have paid the price of that neglect and/or abuse. We bring them back to their intended health -- giving them the love and care that they are intended to receive from their care takers. I think we do a tremendous job and do not consider the animals that have crossed over the rainbow bridge to be excessive for what we have to work with.
Except in cases like Gina whose lack of proper care caused her illness to be so severe that nothing we did could help her. We believe in quality of life and when we cannot make up for the lack of care by giving them quality, then we release their pain.
Of the 12 equines that we have lost (some being in their adopted homes) over the last five years, 5 of them have been over 28 years old and had at least their last two years (or more) filled with love and happiness.
Beamer came back from almost dead as a yearling and had a year of love, learned trust and grew to be a wonderful young colt. Why did he come down with salmonella? Only the Lord knows why he was called home. We tried everything we could -- acupuncture, fluid therapy -- but would not send him to be in isolation as he didn't deserve that. Did it rip our hearts out after putting everything we have into his being? You bet. To this day, when I talk about Beamer and the raw deal he was given due to some idiot, my eyes still tear up. But, at least he did get to learn love and trust that was due him in his young life.
With the amount of pot bellied pigs that we take in, and how sensitive and heart broken they are when they are dumped off -- losing their family and not understanding why?? We hand feed and water those with broken heart and can only hope that the loving care that we give them can help them forget. if they recover, they learn to be happy and we can only hope that someone will give them the chance to meet them and see the love that they have to offer. If not, they have a safe home here at Hog Heaven for their entire lives.
And our beloved Barney (the cat) was treated for URI and succumbed to his system breaking down. Again we did everything that we could.
It hurts when we get them in and they have lost the trust that is so important to their well being. Does it hurt when we lose an animal that has come to us for repair of what some idiot has done to them? You bet... but the hurt is well worth giving them the love and care that they deserve.
We are passionate about what we do. When we do lose an animal, we do wonder -- is it worth it?? But, what would happen if we didn't take in the animals that we take in? Would they end up at the slaughter house? Or worse, starving in someone's back yard?
We believe that we have made a difference... and when an animal that was once so afraid of humans that they would try to bite you to protect themselves, greets you with a warm whinny and a soft nuzzle of your shoulder... is it worth it? You bet it is!
We have given many adopters the opportunity to love someone's throw away animal, and show them that all animals are worth the time, effort and expense to give them a second chance.
I hope that I have answered your question. If you are local, you are welcome to visit.
We take much pride in the comment that we receive often: "boy, when you come thru the gate of Hog Heaven, you can just feel the love!"