Harvest Home June 2013

Not far from San Francisco or Sacramento, Harvest Home Animal Sanctuary has been active among the vineyard-lined, picturesque views of San Joaquin Valley in Stockton, California, since 2004. It was founded by Karen Courtemanche and Annemarie Engelhardt, two longtime animal protection advocates. The sanctuary houses abused and neglected farm animals, giving them life-long, loving homes. In order to prevent further cruelty, they also focus on educating the public on caring for companion animals and being informed on issues regarding farmed animals.

Harvest Home Animal Sanctuary also focuses specially on life-saving animal protection for birds and rabbits. They are an official affiliate sanctuary for the House Rabbit Society, a non-profit based in Richmond, CA which dedicates itself towards educating the public on domestic rabbits and fostering and rescuing unwanted or abandoned rabbits. Rabbits and dogs can be adopted through the sanctuary to a potential, permanent home, and they also encourage fostering their resident rabbits out to help socialization. They provide the needed resources, such as pens, food and litter.

Many other kinds of animals call the sanctuary their home, ranging from goats, pigs, turkeys, chickens, rabbits, guinea pigs, dogs, pigeons, and ducks to guinea fowl. Each animal has a background, such as Monica the potbellied pig. She was the victim of a college prank, having been dumped on the grounds of the University of Southern California and left to run around aimlessly. Mohawk, one of the sanctuary’s first residents, was a pig who was rehabilitated after being mauled by dogs. Tucker the goat was discovered being offered for free on Craigslist. Brandon the duck was rescued from foie gras production. Each animal is unique for their experience and for what they went through before finding this new, peaceful home.

Harvest Home receives a lot of public inquiries about housing animals, but due to size restraints, they cannot take in every animal that needs a home. However, to help these animals find homes, the sanctuary runs an online bulletin board for animals in need of adoption or fostering. Most recently, a group of seven piglets was left on someone’s property by a stranger without warning, and they are in desperate need of a loving forever home. To read about the piglets, and other animals in need of a home, visit Harvest Home Sanctuary’s Rescue & Adoption Bulletin Board.

Volunteers are needed, and always welcomed, to help out at the sanctuary. To get involved, potential volunteers should fill out an application, and once approved, attend a mandatory volunteer orientation session. The sanctuary does allow visitors, and a guided tour of thirty or sixty minutes is available by appointment, with a $10 donation per adult. Reservations for a tour can be made by emailing [email protected]. The sanctuary also has many options to help pitch in, from donations, to sponsoring one of their many residents, to their wishlist, which includes items such as blankets, hay, feed, giftcards, PetMeds, and even printer paper. Help is always needed, no matter the effort, big or small.

Harvest Home Animal Sanctuary is located at 14741 Wing Levee Road, Stockton, CA 95206. To learn more about them, visit their website. You can also follow them on Facebook, where you can find updates both from the sanctuary and from their online bulletin.

Photo credit: Harvest Home Animal Sanctuary