HARVEST TIME: Hard Work Time

As the dogs and I were walking down the lane this morning we encountered Adam Bowman, our Farm Manager. When we stopped to talk  I sensed a note of relief in his voice as he informed me that the particular load of straw on the wagon he was driving was one of the last of the season.

It is difficult to overestimate the kind of tension that the hay and straw harvests bring each year.  The weather, of course, is the great determinant in this process and monitoring the forecasts becomes rather obssessive while it is underway.  This year, finding 4 day periods without rain were extremely challenging.

Then, once the weather does cooperate there are the hours and hours spent on the tractor: cutting, raking and baling.  This is often done over several days.  Thereafter, bales have to be unloaded and put into the barn.  For that part, at least 5 strong people need be available for the many hours of sweating labour required while they unload the tons of hay and straw and place it in the mow.  Temperatures always seem to be in the high 30’s whenever that takes place.

One can appreciate that when the harvest is finally finished, and the thousands of bales are snugly in place, there is often a great, slow exhalation of breath.  We can relax: the animals’ nutritional needs will be met during the coming winter. Thank you Adam, Kayla, Sarah, Stephanie and everyone else who worked so hard to make this happen.

Sandra Pady, Founder



The small farm in Southern Ontario was a testimony to neglect and the many animals confined in its boundaries were half-starved and dehydrated. A neigbour, a young woman, had long been concerned but she did not know what to do. Fortunately, she was made aware of the local humane society and its welfare inspector. She called to report the situation, under condition of anonymity, and within a short period the farm was inspected. In turn, the DSC was asked to help in the rescue.

One horse and one donkey had to be euthanized, their condition was so bad. There were also two jennets, one jack stallion and a 10 day old foal. The older donkeys’ hooves were appalingly long, twisted and bent out of shape. In one case, a dismal effort had been made to cut down the jack’s hooves with a hacksaw. Soon thereafter we brought thr four donkeys to the Sanctuary Farm.

In the weeks to come our animal care staff, veterianrian and farrier will work to turn the animals’ lives around. Recuperation will have to be careful and slow.

We are grateful that the DSC was able to help, able to provide a lifelong home to these creatures so very much in need. To all of our supporters, thank you for helping us to make this possible.

Sandra Pady, Founder