Along with the wonderful work that we do here at The Gentle Barn, and the joy that comes with restoring new lives and new hope in the animals, comes the agony of losing them when they move on. When The Gentle Barn was first started, the pain was so great that we did not know if we could continue doing what we do. But after much thought, we made a conscious decision that no matter how hard it is to lose our beloved animals that we were going to carry on our mission and dream and pour our hearts and souls into them while we have them and accept that letting them go when the time comes is a part of our job.
This month we have to say a sad and painful goodbye to our little cow Amber. She was born on a Black Angus beef ranch and when the farmers rounded up all the young cows from pasture to send them to slaughter, in came little Amber who was a dwarf. They did not see the use of sending her to be butchered, as she was so small, so they called us up and asked if we would like to have her. We said absolutely yes, and we got lucky to have such a cutie pie at our place, and she got lucky to have her life spared.
At first Amber was very shy, as she had not been around people her first year of life. But after seeing us hug and love our other cows, she quickly got the gist and allowed us to love her as well. She lived a very good life here. She was brushed and hugged by the children we host and she was protected and loved by our other cows who would groom her with their tongues until she was soaking wet.
During the last year things started going down hill for little Amber; her tiny disproportionate body was not designed for a long life. Walking got increasingly difficult, then she had trouble getting up and down, and there were several times that she would get stuck and we would have to help her up. We treated her with deep tissue massage therapy and anti inflammatory painkillers to buy us a little more time with her, but we knew it would not be long before we would have to say goodbye.
On a recent Saturday, we had a group of orphans come to the barn and they gathered around Amber and brushed her and hugged her and gave her treats. After the group, she lounged peacefully in the sun. Later that night, she munched contentedly on her dinner. We checked on her before going to bed and all was well. Early Sunday morning we came to serve her breakfast and she was gone. She was lying on her side, no sign of struggle or pain, just peacefully lying there, passed on, out of a body that no longer served her. Perhaps she had had enough.
We are grateful that she is no longer in pain or frustrated with a body that grew old before its time. We miss her terribly and are grateful for all the sweetness, patience, and love she gave us all.
Thank you Amber, thank you!
When you sponsor an animal for yourself or as a gift, you will receive a Certificate of Sponsorship, which includes your animal friend's bio, and a beautiful photo!
You will also receive monthly updates by email letting you know how your animal friend is doing as well as an updated photo.