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Meet Nina: Our Baby Lamb Rescued From Easter Slaughter

In eighteen years of rescue, we’ve learned a lot about sheep. They are loyal, affectionate, and shy. To get to know a sheep is to earn their trust, and to know that they will love you as much as you love them.

When Nina, a lamb marked for slaughter, came to us just days before Easter, she hadn’t known much love in her short life.  We know the conditions that she lived in were abysmal, we know she was separated too early from her mother, and we know that her tail was removed— a common practice in animal agriculture— without any painkillers or anesthesia. She was rescued from a live market in Astoria, where she (and so many others) would have been chosen, killed, and eaten for the holiday.

Lambs are slaughtered between 2 and 6 months old. Nina is about 5 months old, days away from winding up on someone’s plate. After rescuers John and Denise pleaded with the owner of the live market, he agreed to give Nina, the smallest lamb, to them. He was baffled that they didn’t want her legs bound together for the journey out of the market.

Around the world, over 500 million sheep are killed every year. If we took only one second to honor each of those 500 million lives lost, we’d be grieving for almost 16 years. When we remember the individuality of each of the sheep we’ve come to know, we realize that 500 million unique, sweet, innocent individuals die for a meal.

At Catskill Animal Sanctuary, sheep trek across the property for a hug. They will paw—or hoof—at you if they feel you’re not paying enough attention. They will wag their tails to convey their happiness— no different from the affectionate dogs or cats we have at home. Sheep, especially lambs, just want to be loved. Nina already makes herself at home in people’s laps within moments of being introduced. She wants to be nuzzled and kissed by everyone. She’ll take on an important role as an ambassador for her kind, teaching everyone who comes through our gates about the kindness, gentleness, and intelligence of all animals.

The vet is continuing to assess her health, but we are already treating her for coccidia, a common condition in animals raised for their flesh.

How to Help Nina:
-If you’d like to help countless others like Nina, please keep animals in your heart —and off your plate— this Easter (and all year long!)
-Share Nina’s story with friends and family
-If you’d like to help with the costs of Nina’s care, you can become one of her sponsors— which means you can schedule a VIP visit with her (once she has a clean bill of health). There are so many wonderful benefits to sponsoring— but most of all, you’ll know that you’re helping Nina get a fresh start for Easter.

Love Spoken Here.



*Animal Rescue, *Animals, Rescues, Why Sanctuaries Matter


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6 replies on “Meet Nina: Our Baby Lamb Rescued From Easter Slaughter”

  1. Hats off to John and Denise. How difficult that must have been. Their gutsy move saved a beautiful creature’s life. Of course, thank you to Catskill Animal Sanctuary. I know the work that gets done there from having volunteered in the past at the sanctuary.
    I wish more people would learn how much more compassion you have as a person when you value every animal’s life. Every animal truly is an individual being. If more people would step over the line of their traditional eating habits to a plant-based diet, we wouldn’t have to hear about the horror animals go through like Nina, and the countless other tragedies, as well. Meat is murder. More people need to treat it as such.

  2. I have been a vegetarian for 25 years
    I love ALL animals way too much. Too bad humans still think it is their right to eat meat fish poultry.

  3. Thank you for sharing the horrific numbers of sheep slaughtered. The public needs a wake up call. And how wonderful for Nina to now have a big, loving CAS family.

  4. I love lambs and sheep also. I too warmly thank Denise and John for saving another gentle innocent little lamb. I already have been sickened by how such peaceful, pure, and innocent little animals are getting slaughtered. And now I feel even more sickened by now learning that it’s 500 million kind innocent lives lost a year! And that I’ve also seen how each one of those animals had the potential to be happy, leaping, running, loving and affectionate animals if they’d been with people who loved and cared for them and kept them safe and happy. And I’ve seen countless times now that’s exactly how these animals are when they’re with someone who treats them well. And the ones who weren’t saved would’ve all been the same, because pure, gentle, and kind is how these animals naturally are by nature as long as they’re not put into some horrible place where they’re mistreated, abused, and then slaughtered. How people could have done this to such an enormous number of such pure and innocent animals has made me sick, and it’s given me such a warm and caring sympathy for them. Thank and bless each of you who have savied and been kind to the lambs and sheep

  5. Someday, I’m going to adopt a couple of lambs myself. And like Denise, John, and all others like them, I will treat them well. Two more of these peaceful, pure, and innocent animals will be with someone who treats them kindly and keeps them safe and happy

  6. Almost a year to date, my son and I stayed at the sanctuary. He was smitten with who was then your latest arrival: Nina. We just watched the latest video of her and were just delighted to see how curly and lovey she is demanding snuggles – and crackers! That video brought us so much joy. Thank you for all your work.

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