Apifera Farm - where art, story, animals & woman merge. Home to artist Katherine Dunn

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©Katherine Dunn.

Monday, December 05, 2011

Aunt Bea we are with you

Sweet little Aunt Bea is struggling to survive. The malnourishment has wreaked havoc on her little system and we are doing all we can do to give her a chance to live more days in the sun.

[Note: People have asked, and yes, you are free to donate to help with the $400 vet bill. Just go to the sponsor page and scroll to Paypal gift option levels. And of course I greatly appreciate it.]

Aunt Bea was rescued by New Moon Goat Farm and we brought her, along with Professor Otis Littleberry, to Apifera in late November. While everyone has had a chuckle about her very wide load, she is very malnourished after living in a place that had no feed for her, none. The blood work came back on Friday night and she is loaded with liver fluke [she arrived at New Moon loaded with lice too]. Her liver is borderline,her glucose was low and her PacCell count was very bad. We are giving her daily injections and drenches, probiotics and sugar water. She was basically a bone under her skin, and in lay person's terms, was starving and being sucked dry by parasites both internal and external. It's been chilly, so I wrapped her in old sweaters and lamb jackets, and then bury her in hay at night.

Every morning as I walk to the barn, I say my mantra, "Come on Aunt Bea, come on Aunt Bea." I hold my breath as I peak in the stall. She is on Day 4 of treatment and I noticed a tiny bit of improvement today. She can't stand on her own, or get up on her own, so I make her stand. Then I get her in a little wagon and take her to the sunny paddock - I'm a firm believer in the healing of mother earth and sun. She stands, doesn't move, but she is eating and drinking.

I know New Moon - who we have worked with for years now and have adopted 8 needy goats from- felt badly about this. But I really believe this was meant to be. I can give her one-on-one attention here since my little misfit herd is small. If New Moon hadn't taken her and the 7 others in, they would have died for sure [4 of the original herd did die wile in the former home]. I'm sure she and Professor are getting more attention than they have in the past year when they lived at the neglectful home they had been sent to [the first owner died, and had cared for them very well. I hope she is looking down on Bea].

I don't want to partake in over zealous name calling that can happen in animal neglect cases. I see it all the time on Facebook - people throwing insults and judgments out at total strangers for neglecting an animal, when they don't know anything about the circumstances. There are some really good people that get in life changing situations where the animals end up suffering, but it is not because the owners were bad people [some are, I agree, but you don't know the situations]. So I will leave the mud slinging to the masses, and won't allow it on this blog in the comment section.

What I do know is this. When I can care for an animal like this, even if she doesn't make it, she will go out loved. That makes me human, and humane. And I am reminded with each shot I give her, each caress and kind word I whisper in her ear, that I can always choose the humane path, even in a small way like helping a little, starving goat.

I tell her every night, "Aunt Bea, there is a lot to live for her here. I will fight as long as you do."