Do No Harm Farm
Wildlife Rescue & Rehabilitation is home to around 300 animals who are commonly found on farms, including sheep, goats, pigs, turkeys, cows, and chickens as well as many domesticated rabbits, ducks, geese, mules, and donkeys.
The Do No Harm Farm was established in 1999 when an organization in north Texas bearing that name found it necessary to close their doors. WRR was there to take in the soon-to-be homeless farmed animals and give them acres to roam at our Kendalia facility.
Most of the animals in our sanctuary came from a world where they are thought of only as commodities to be exploited for the sake of human consumption and profit. Many were destined for a life of suffering, exploitation and death in the food industry had they not had the good fortune to be rescued and placed here at our Do No Harm Farm.
While many of these resident animals may have experienced harsh treatment in their youth, we can take solace in the fact that for the rest of their lives they will be allowed to live peacefully in our care.
Here are a few of their stories:
At the WRR sanctuary, these animals are free to roam and play in our many pastures. They have shelters from inclement weather, thick beds of hay, nourishing food, clean water, sunlight, and fresh air.
Chester & Ester
Beautiful bovines who were born on local ranches, Chester suffered a broken leg when he was a calf and had it not been for the caring neighbors who knew of his plight, he would have been killed. This young couple spent weeks and weeks providing hands on care for Chester until he could stand and walk again on his own. Once he grew too big and rambunctious for them to keep him they brought him to WRR. Esther has no sight but acclimated quickly to life here with other rescued cows. Chester and Esther are quite fond of each other.
WRR was called on to rescue a large flock of hens who had been left abandoned in nearby San Antonio. Many of these birds were quite elderly and thin. We were happy to take them in and give them a huge, open space with grass and all the food they can eat. The birds love to roam about pecking and investigating their new world. At night they have a fully secure hen house where they sleep in peace and safety.
Chickens are rarely thought of as more than someone to eat. In fact these are beautiful and intelligent birds who deserve our respect. Few people realize the immense cruelty these birds are forced to endure every day of their lives in the processing plants. Many chicks are hatched but only hens are kept to be raised for eventual slaughter. Male chicks are discarded when they are only hours old, thrown into garbage bins while still alive and cheeping for their mothers, and then completely covered by other hatchlings in an attempt to smother the tiny chicks. This saves the processing plant time and money as they do not have to gas the little chicks, they can just let them slowly die under the weight of their fellows. Please consider changing to a vegetarian diet.
John Lennon & Bonnie
John Lennon and Bonnie came to us early in 2013 after a Colorado man could no longer care for them. At WRR, they free roam and have even been seen protecting our herd of nearly 50 rescued sheep as they roam around our 212-acre property. The sheep and llamas will often stroll about the grounds grazing freely on the native grasses and supplemental hay we provide. They will spend time during the heat of the summer days under the shade of large live oak trees. The male llama is the first of this pair to greet anyone who approaches the herd, the female will cautiously join him until both saunter off assured that all is well and safe.
Several donkeys and mules call the expansive grounds of WRR their home. Some came from petting zoos, others from abuse or neglect. Many needed severe hoof trims, diet changes and other specialized care, all of which they receive during their years at WRR. The donkeys and mules are seen every day about the sanctuary investigating all the interesting diets as they are being fed to the other residents and often taking time to enjoy a relaxing dust bath, one of their favorite pastimes.
The Jacob’s, Suffolk, Fine Wool, and other sheep who call the sanctuary home came from as far away as North Carolina and as nearby as Spring Branch. Some came from homes where their humans had died, others were rescued off the auction block, and still others were found abandoned and hungry. Now they are all part of a well-fed, resident herd, roaming the hills here at WRR’s Do No Harm Farm.
Many of the turkeys at WRR were saved from their intended fate as food on Thanksgiving tables. A history of selective breeding, a cruel life of confinement, and a diet meant not to nourish but to fatten, have left domesticated turkeys terribly misshapen, many barely able to support their own weight on legs designed by nature for much smaller birds. Once here at WRR these beautiful birds are fed an appropriate diet that encourages weight loss and longevity and they are given free range of large, grassy yards where they enjoy spending time with the resident chickens.