Thank You For Your Support!
In addition to managing the day-to-day farm operation and animal care, Friends of the Farm is responsible for raising the funds needed to cover the cost of food, housing and veterinarian care for the animals. All animal-care related costs are funded solely through the money raised at Friends of the Farm sponsored events, through our country store and farm-stand sales, our appeal letter campaigns and through the personal donations we receive from those within the community who want to help the animals and keep the farm going.
We are grateful for everyone’s support and so are the animals! Here are just some of the ways your generosity has helped :
As anyone with a household pet can attest, routine veterinarian care is essential to an animal’s overall health and well-being. All of our animals receive their standard annual immunizations and periodic vet care as needed as well as routine management/preventative care provided by our team of volunteers. Next to our monthly hay and feed bills, veterinarian and health management care is our top operating expense. Your donations make all the difference in our ability to meet these critical needs.
Gemini, one of our three cats, getting weighed during her annual wellness visit at Northshore Veterinarian Hospital.
“Big”, the goat, about to get treated for a bacterial infection.
Building materials for repairs, new structures and enclosures are also funded through Friends of the Farm and of course, nothing is possible without our hands-on volunteers who selflessly donate their time and energy to managing these projects.
Here are a couple of our dedicated volunteers completing construction of a new barn. The barn has since been painted and is happily occupied by Ezra and Onyx, our two alpacas.
When the barn door needed repair, materials were purchased and the work began. In addition to replacing the old exterior door, our volunteers improved the situation by building a new interior dutch door which has allowed more air-flow into the barn for the animals .
Grooming & Hoof-Care
Grooming and hoof care is another important component to our animals’ health. Our sheep and alpacas are professionally sheared each Spring and they, along with our goats, require frequent hoof trimming throughout the year.
Ezra the alpaca about to be sheared
Adeleide, one of our goats, gets her hooves done by a member of the Long Island Goat Association.
Hay is the staple in all of our big animals and bunnies’ diets and not surprisingly, it’s our #1 biggest expense. Without your donations, we simply would not be able to meet this most fundamental need. Annabelle the cow would like to thank you for your support but we taught her NOT to talk with her mouth full!
In addition to meeting the essential health and dietary needs of our animals, it’s important that their intellectual and behavioral needs are met as well. All of our animals are intelligent, sentient beings and as such, require a certain amount of enrichment to satisfy their seeking drives, thwart off boredom and the bad behaviors that often accompany it and ensure their overall happiness and well-being. When possible we use home-grown methods of enrichment that don’t require any funding such as giving our bunnies hay stuffed-paper towel tubes to chew on, installing tree stump climbing apparatus for the goats and placing old tires in Tiny the pig’s pen.
Other times, however, we must purchase such items as was the case with our chickens below. These ‘Flock Block’ treats purchased from Agway, really help keep them occupied and prevent them from pecking at each other. The turkeys and peacocks enjoy their flock blocks as well!
Comfort & Protection
Animals need shelter from both extreme cold and hot temperatures. Last year we purchased barn fans to help improve the air flow and keep the animals cool during the hot, humid weather. On the hottest of days, it’s not uncommon to find them standing in the direct path of the fan’s breeze as Annabelle demonstrates below. We are especially grateful to have been able to purchase these barn fans from the FarmTek catalog. The summer months can be awfully hard on the animals and any bit of relief we can provide them with is a very, VERY good thing! Thank you!
A sudden cold snap just days after the alpacas were sheared left Ezra and Onyx exposed and shivering. These XL , fleece-lined dog coats helped protect them from the elements. Ezra wore red, while Onyx, shown below, sported a blue coat.
Equipment & Tools
Our animal care volunteers have their jobs cut out for them each morning and night. Changing waters, filling food troughs and mucking stalls can be worth a day at the gym! Thanks to the support of our generous donors, we are able to purchase the right equipment for the job such as this durable plastic watering bucket from Jeffers Livestock Catalog which helps lighten our load by enabling us to more efficiently feed, water and clean up after the animals.
Here’s another example of your donation dollars at work. Feeding our five geese their grain each day was always a losing battle given that the big animals would come along and steal their food the minute we tossed it to them. After some googling and searching the various farm forums out there, we found plans for this simple yet ingenious “goat proof goose feeder” made from PVC piping. The materials cost around $60 and we were fortunate enough to have a volunteer on-hand to build it. It’s so nice to see the geese finally eating in peace without having to compete with the big guys!
These were just a few examples of how your support has helped. There are too many examples to list them all!
Whether you attend Friends of the Farm’s events, make a direct donation or support the farm by visiting the store and buying produce off the farm stand for the animals, your contribution counts and is very much appreciated!