Monday, July 15, 2013

Animal Rescue Of A Different Color

Photo Copyright 2010 by 4-Winds Rescue, used with permission.

4-Winds Rescue Ranch rests in an idyllic corner of Nixon, Texas, less than an hour east of San Antonio. The ranch, however, is anything but lazy and carefree. It is bustling with hurried and busy life for the two-person full-time staff.

The ranch is not like other rescues most people have encountered. Most rescues seem to trend towards pet-quality animals such as puppies and cats. There are others that cater to a specific class of animal such as large cats (cougars), raptors (eagles, falcons, other birds of prey), or former race horses.

4-winds rescues farm and ranch animals.

Many may believe the ranch supports PETA or other animal-rights extremists. Still others may regard the charity's mission and believe they support vegan and vegetarian lifestyles. In reality, the NPO has little to do with dictating how people eat. They are about how the animals are treated in their lives as what they are:  farm animals.

The ranch has several horses rescued from various fates. One was rescued from the back of a truck that was bringing the equine to a glue factory. Dorin Blackowiak-Finn bought the horse. The animal still had much of its lifespan to enjoy. Now, the horse roams the ranch, grazing, and enjoying its life.

The ranch serves as an adopted home to horses, mules, donkeys, and ponies. But they don't stop with equines.

They have their share of rescued dogs, as well. Though that is not their main purpose.

They have rescued emus and alpacas. They have sheep. There are peacocks (and hens). There are turkeys and ducks and geese. They also have pigs.

Once these animals reach their normal maturity and life-span, they are sometimes sold for food. Duck and chicken eggs are harvested from the rescues and sold for consumption.

Some of the rescues are animals that needed medical attention the previous owners could not afford. Instead of destroying (killing) the animals for economic reasons, Dorin and her husband John purchase (or adopt via donation) the critters and nurse them back to health.

I witnessed as they did this for a couple of calves. Unfortunately, one of two rescued that day succumbed. The other, however, thrived. In the circle of life, 50% surviving is better than 0%. Their successes do greatly outnumber the failures, though. Witnessing the care, attention, and efforts generated a new respect for the work they do.

Like any charity or NPO, 4-Winds needs funding. They have several programs that reciprocate the efforts including selling the "Book of Free" and a proposed adoption program where sponsors help defray the costs of feeding and caring for one or more of the animals.

The NPO also needs materials. Donations are always welcomed. Their site is regularly updated with materiel needs.

Also, like any NPO, they need time and effort. They need volunteers. They are a 501c NPO and all of the above are tax deductible donations. John tends to do much of the work himself. Like with any farm or ranch, that can be a herculean task for a single man.

Please contact 4-Winds Rescue to offer any support (or to put in your order for your Thanksgiving Turkey).
809 CR 483
Nixon, TX 78140
ph: 210-854-4676
Or at this website.