Emaciated Calf Rescued From Petting Zoo Takes His First Steps of Freedom

Tracy Vogt of Charlie’s Acres Farm Animal Sanctuary in Sonoma, California shared the wonderful story of Simon, a former petting zoo cow who was so emaciated, malnourished, and very ill when he was rescued that he had to be hospitalized before coming to them.

He was alone at the petting zoo by himself you could see his skin and bones and he needed help…He was rescued by a great volunteer for us. He was extremely skinny. He was by himself and looked very unhappy. He needed to be under intensive care for about a week before he could come to us.

Once he fattened up and healed, Simon had the opportunity to take his first steps in the open air and bond with the other animals they refer to as the “Misfit Group”. He took well advantage of his newfound freedom and camaraderie.

He was so excited. And he was just a young happy calf. He jumped and ran. He was finally home at peace. At that point, he was able to join the rest of our animals. …we had him in this group of animals that we call our Misfit Group because they’re all animals that have special needs. …He’s doing everything that a cow should do he really thrived, and he got to make friends, which he didn’t have at the petting zoo.

Rescued Calf First Steps

When he grew to big for the Misfits, he was moved to the cow pasture where he learned his place within the bovine hierarchy.

He’s well over 1,000 lbs and he’s kind of a mischievous teenage boy he has grown to be pretty much bigger than the rest of our cows most of our cows are older. He joined our cow herd when he was young. He had to learn how to be a cow from our other cows and so he took his place at the end of the line of the cows, as far as his hierarchy goes.  Now he’s learning that he’s an adult and he can be more of a leader than he used to be.

Lori Dorn
Lori Dorn

Lori is a Laughing Squid Contributing Editor based in New York City who has been writing blog posts for over a decade. She also enjoys making jewelry, playing guitar, taking photos and mixing craft cocktails.