Inspiring Kindness and Compassion towards Animals, Our Planet, and Each Other
Inspiring Kindness and Compassion towards Animals, Our Planet, and Each Other

Tommy's Story

I rescued my very first turkey 24 years ago in November after our grand opening in 1999. I was so excited! His family purchased him for Thanksgiving but could not go through with butchering him, so they brought him to me. Tommy was handsome and regal, with feathers that reflected a shimmering rainbow in the sun and deep soulful eyes. The man who brought him to me stressed two important things: Tommy is not smart, so I should assume he does not understand anything, and he is mean, so I should protect myself with a rake while in the barnyard. I had never had a turkey before, so I followed his advice.

The first night Tommy was at The Gentle Barn, I ushered him into the barn at dusk to show him
where he would eat and sleep for the night. The next night at dusk, I looked for Tommy all over the barnyard thinking he wouldn’t remember. I could not find him anywhere. After an exhaustive search, I finally spotted him in front of his door patiently waiting for me to open it up so he could have dinner and go to bed. Tommy was not unintelligent at all, he understood where his bedroom was and remembered the routine. For the rest of Tommy’s life, he would always be waiting for me at his bedroom door at dusk.

For two weeks, I carried a rake with me wherever I went in the barnyard. Tommy never gestured toward me aggressively. He never snapped at me. Finally, I put the rake down and began a close friendship with my very first turkey. Tommy was always gentle, polite, kind, and affectionate. He was a gentleman with me, my volunteers, and all my guests. Maybe Tommy understood our intentions and knew we would never do him harm?

During these uncertain times this is the place to be donating. A general donation to The Gentle Barn supports the organization in all aspects.

Donation Amount
I will add $2 to help cover processing fees.
Please consider making this a recurring donation.

Tommy was the love of my life for four magical years. He paraded around the barnyard demanding our attention. He came with me to schools and held still while children lined up to meet him. When he particularly liked someone, he would rest his head on their stomach, close his eyes, and purr.When Tommy could no longer walk because of the genetic engineering that made him abnormally huge, I helped him out of his body while thanking him for knowing him, for gracing my barnyard with his intelligence, and for opening my eyes to the fact that we are all the same, we just look different. He taught me so much about how majestic, intelligent and affectionate turkeys are, if only the rest of the world would realize.

Latest Posts

Upcoming Events

  • Thermal Horizon - Windsong Retreat (Spring 2024)

    May 4th 2024 - The Gentle Barn California

    Let’s come together as a community as we support The Gentle Barn in their endeavor to enrich the lives of abused animals worldwide. Let’s bring our loving hearts, the spirit of opportunity and fill our cups emotionally, spiritually, and physically as we celebrate unity in community by helping these wonderful support animals.

  • Chakra Meditation and Sound Healing (Spring 2024)

    May 18th 2024 - The Gentle Barn California

    Clear, Balance and Align your 7 main Chakras through guided meditation, chanting, and Integrative sound bath. When your chakras are aligned, the energy moves through you more freely, and you can feel in harmony with all aspects of your physical, emotional and spiritual self.

  • Open Sunday in Missouri

    We are excited to be open to the public again on Sunday, at The Gentle Barn: Missouri.

  • Open Sunday in California

    We are excited to be open to the public again on Sunday, at The Gentle Barn: California.

  • Open Sunday in Tennessee

    We are excited to be open to the public again on Sunday, at The Gentle Barn: Tennessee.