Meet Rescuer and Advocate – Jan Galeazzi
Animal Place’s Rescue Ranch Manager
Marji Beach, Education Director
Each issue, meet one of the dedicated staff members who make Animal Place possible. Jan Galeazzi oversees the care of thousands at Animal Place’s Rescue Ranch adoption center in northern California. Since Jan started, the rescue and adoption crew has saved 4,100+ animals in a year!
Jan started volunteering with Animal Place’s Grass Valley sanctuary in 2012. She joined the animal care team in 2013. As she continued volunteering, her commitment to Animal Place grew and she wanted to be of more service to the animals. When the Rescue Ranch manager positioned open in 2014, she applied!
“Loving and caring for animals, then letting them go can be hard,” Jan says. “My reward is that we watch them transform while they’re here. They heal physically, emotionally, socially – and become relaxed, and confident, and playful.”
Running an adoption center means the animals do not stay. Jan and her team get the animals (mostly hens) healthy and our adoption coordinator Jacinda Virgin adopts them out.The job is high-stress with Jan and her crew saving hundreds or thousands of animals at one time. A mountain of work follows – feeds, waters, barn cleaning, nightly closes, health care, and property maintenance.
One of the toughest aspects of the job happens at night. The majority of animals rescued are hens from the egg industry, most of whom have lived in barren wire cages so small the birds cannot stretch their wings. Freedom is a novelty for them. For the first 2-3 weeks, at night, they pile on top of each other. Too weak to move, birds on the bottom suffocate. Every evening, Jan, her staff, and volunteers embark on a painstaking de-clumping process, physically removing larger birds off of the smaller, weaker hens below.
“I am most proud of the quality of care the animals receive here,” Jan says. “The staff is dedicated to giving the animals the best care possible. I am grateful to work with wonderful people in service to such amazing animals.”
For Jan, every day is full of memorable moments: the times when animals bond or follow Jan around during the work day; seeing the animals flourish; watching their silly antics, and being welcomed into their circle of friendship. The bittersweet moment comes when Jan must say “see you later” and send each hen, rooster, goat, or sheep to their forever home.
Each evening, after Jan locks every animal up for bed, she heads home – onsite – to fiance Rocky, Velcro and Breezy the cats, and a special flock of chickens – Piggles, Cosmo, Pajamas, Fussy Wussy, Little Red, Scraggles, and Mr. Bumbles.