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They thought it was trash…until she moved

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They thought it was trash…until she moved

Aug 7 2015 Shelby smbDriving down the highway, a driver initially took little notice of what appeared to be trash on the side of the freeway…until the lump moved. Afraid the creature was a dog or cat who might get hit by a car, the two immediately pulled over.

And found an emaciated, petrified calf!

With no farm in sight, the two believed the calf fell from a transport truck taking calves to auction for sale to dairy farms and slaughter.

She must have hunkered down on the side of the highway and waited. Wounded and vulnerable, days passed without help, food, or hope. What little weight she had, rapidly disappeared. She became infested with parasites, pus oozing from open sores on her legs and side.

When her rescuers figured out she was a calf, their reaction was no different than if she had been a dog or a cat – the two guided the weak calf into the back of their vehicle…and called us. We knew time was of the essence and offered to take in the calf.

Her rescuers drove the calf 8 hours to us.

Our animal care team rushed into action when they saw the car pull in the driveway. Caregivers immediately fed the vulnerable orphan a prepared bottle of warm milk replacer, gave fluids for her dehydration, and monitored her throughout the night, to ensure survival.

The rescuers named her Shelby.

Aug 7 2015 Shelbe sma

Shelby had a body condition score of 1.5 out of 9.

Our veterinarian diagnosed Shelby as severely emaciated, labeling her body condition score a 1.5 out of 9 (where 1 is the most emaciated.)  She weighed 83 pounds but should have weighed 120 pounds — almost 40 pounds underweight!

Shelby is on the road to recovery but is not out of the woods yet. It will take months for her to gain weight and recover from this trauma.

She loves playing with her bouncy ball and is learning to trust humans once again. We may not know her history completely, but her future is secure. Unlike calves on dairy farms, Shelby will never be forcibly impregnated just so her calves can be stolen and her milk sold to humans. She will never face the slaughterhouse at a fraction of her lifespan.

As a resident of Animal Place, she has value beyond measure. It is in the way she moos at the other cows across the way. Or how she races across her pasture, then collapses exhausted. It is how she curiously investigates everything within eyesight and nose. Or how she cracks acorns open and spends fifteen minutes crushing one into oblivion. It is in who she is, not how she can benefit humans.

Join us in crafting a more just, compassionate world…where calves like Shelby are seen as unique individuals who have value beyond a forgotten meal.

How you can help:
Try vegan! We can help! Join our Sanctuary Sweets recipe list! Being vegan is joyous and is a stand against cruelty and social injustice.

Donate! Helping Shelby recover from her trauma and neglect has required several veterinary visits, antibiotics, de-worming, vaccines, and of course daily bottle feedings. Any gift is appreciated to provide Shelby the best lifelong care she deserves!

What are ways you can help animals like Shelby?



51 Responses so far.

  1. Edy Williams says:

    She has a Spiritual Guide here, a special devotion for this precious Calf. what a miracle, think their is a Higher level. reasons she has survived. I dont Eat any Animals. keeps my weight down..Edy Williams
    P.S What NAME did you give little Goldie?

  2. Wendy Chandler says:

    Totally Incredible story with an imaging outcome.. Thank you for all you do!

  3. Steven Handwerker says:


    • Deborah says:

      Right on!

    • Tina shurtleff says:

      Yes. People need to ban together. Right now in Florida the fish and Wildlife are going to allow 1500 black bears to be hunted down and killed. Just a few short yrs ago they were endangered. Everyone please call the Florida governors office. This is only for recreation.

  4. xin says:

    this poor cow deserves living right



  6. Ellen Snyder says:

    What a beautiful little calf. The way humans treat animals makes me sick and so sad. I am disgusted and furious that these precious creatures are treated with such little regard. They suffer so much at our hands. Many thanks to the two who rescued her and to Animal Place for caring for her. Please don’t stop your wonderful work. I mailed a donation to you this morning.


    thank-you for being there

  8. Jan Elliott says:

    Thank you for all you do. I used to live on a large piece of property in Grass Valley and rescued as many farm animals as I could. I wish I still lived there so I could donate time to you. Sadly, I do not have enough money to donate to you, but will certainly do so if my financial situation improves.

  9. Barbara says:

    some people are cruel that poor animal I am glad she has been saved so many are just thrown like trash because of some in human people………….animals deserve the best……the deserve a good loving home

  10. shirley siewert says:

    How wonderful that this sweet cow was rescued! Thank you!

  11. Kirstin says:

    Thank God for compassionate people who saved Shelby. Whatever happened to her was just horrible but it actually saved her life…so in a way she was one of the lucky ones. Happy she is now safe, loved, and cared for. I wish all animals could experience love and compassion and the ultimate gift of life. Lots of big hugs & kisses going out to Shelby. Thank you Animal Place for taking her in…you all rock!!! God bless

  12. Connie says:

    Thank you, everyone that was involed in saving her!! God bless you! I am glad there are some good people left in a world that seems to have lost its humanity. It breaks my heart when animals suffer!

  13. polly wirum says:

    Thank you for your beautiful work!!

  14. Paula Black says:

    Once again Animal Place saves the day!!!!!! I just love what u guys do and I hope and pray that Shelby fully recovers and enjoys the rest of her life in peace. God bless Animal Place and ALL of God’s creatures!

  15. Patrease says:

    I’m so nice to hear and read about stories like this and that there are good caring people out there that really care about all types of animals!! Thank you and God bless you!!

  16. Thank you for being there for her and all of the others that you help.

  17. Paula Florentine says:

    I so happy the people stopped to help this little, scared calf…What a trauma for Shelby!!…I know she is in good hands now and I thank God that people with compassion will help these defenseless, throw away animals!!…I am one of those with compassion and a love for all animals God created on this earth!!…
    I love Shelby!…She is awesome and beautiful!!!..
    God Bless All of You There and please hug and kiss Shelby for me..
    Miss Paula

  18. Carolyn says:

    The pictured calf is a male. Is this the same calf that was picked up by the side of the road in the above story?

  19. Elizabeth Roberts says:

    Get on the road to vegetarian and try to progress to vegan. Also, practice birth control. In case you have not noticed, the planet is overpopulated with voracious, meat eating, invasive species known as Homo sapiens.

  20. Karen Napolitano says:

    What a horror that poor baby went through, imagine the others that weren’t so ” lucky”
    My heart breaks for them all. Thank you and to the couple that had compassion and drove 8 hrs. There is still humanity in the world!!!

  21. Joan says:

    I so glad these angels found her. She needs someplace where she can be save and sound.

  22. Donna E. Szlosek says:

    How wonderful that someone helped this poor calf. I have been vegan for ethical purposes for over 20 yrs and the best 20+ of my life. We do NOT have the right to treat animals as disposable and a next meal. It is about time people started getting educated on this.

  23. Evangelina says:

    Wonderful Animal Place !!!! Thank you so much to the rescue guys and to you for taking care of this little creature she deserves the best!!! I was crying when I read the article, is is so sad what some people can do to innocent creatures such as this one, they have the same rights just like we do to live in this world and enjoy it.
    Take care of Shelby she is just beautiful!!

  24. Julie Braun says:

    Beautiful story, thank you so much for saving her/him! <3

  25. sandra chu says:

    Thank god Shelby was rescued. Shelby was one of the lucky ones. And the couple who saved her are truly kind and wonderful. If everyone in this world was like them, every animal in the world would live a happy and free life. Maybe in the future as we continue to fight and never give up.

  26. Candee Gordon says:

    Love to you. You are heroes to these animals.

  27. Marlene & Bill Ament says:

    God Bless all of you involved in saving this precious calf! She was spared a horrible ending if not rescued by caring people. Shelby truly does deserve a happy & carefree life. May God Bless & Help all of you in your unselfish work!! You will also have a happy ending!!!

  28. God bless the “animal angels” that saved this calf’s life. I am so very happy to know that Shelby will spend the rest of her sweet life in peace and without pain and torture. It saddens me every day to know SO many animals are treated with horror & brutal deaths only to be put on a plate for consumption. I stopped eating meat 3 years ago and am so very happy & healthy. May we all unite and help STOP all these animal killings in our country and other countries as well. Love to you Animal Place…..God will reward you daily for your compassion and love of His animals. God bless all of you.

  29. Christine Teeft says:

    So glad Kendall and Thomas found Shelby. I believe God sent them to her and she was waiting for their arrival.
    Your “Animal Place” sounds like a wonderful sanctuary for animals where they are treated with dignity and respect. Your veterinarians have healing hands and with time Shelby will be completely healed and at her proper weight. She won’t have to fear forced pregnancies, the.theft of her calves, forced milk production or abuse and torture. I believe God is working through each and every one of you out at Animal Place, to put such love in your hearts working with broken and sick animals and to let them live out their days in peace. It can’t get any better than that! I’ve been vegan a long time because of the horrors that nimals have to suffer. I can’t and won’t contribute to their ongoing torture. I wish I had money to give you, but I’m very poor. If and when I sell my house, I will make a contribution at that time. Hopefully by next spring. God be with you Shelby and all the staff at Animal Place. I wish I knew where you were located.

  30. Christine says:

    7 th sentence down, meant to say animals, not nimals!

  31. Audrey Mason says:

    Kim, this is a well written story and really helps everyone understand what Shelby has gone through. Kendall and Thomas are good people that went out of their way to help her. It’s great to know they would have helped any injured animal lying on the side of a highway. Most humans won’t do this. I’m sending a donation to help with her medical bills and also to get her another bouncy ball as a spare. Hopefully she will feel better and better and wear the one she has now out!

    My heart breaks thinking about her slowing dying on the side of that road. Animal Place is once again doing everything they can to save another animal. Shelby is so lucky that two good humans came along and that such a place as Animal Place exists. Thank you all!

  32. I grew up in Iowa on a goat dairy and have been an animal lover all my life, so this rescue touched me deeply. These days I am a breeder of Persian cats and spend my free time enjoying them and caring for them. You can see them on my website at http://www.tuleburgcattery.net. Barbara Redalia

  33. arnie fiergang says:

    Don’t just gush at this wonderful organization’s work with platitudes and end it there. Send some money. Even if you’re broke, surely you can send two, three or five dollars. As the saying goes, put your money where your mouth is!

  34. paul says:

    save her she does not to need to die this way or anyother way keep her as a pet do not sell to nobody else this is her home now i cry for this kind of abuse.

  35. Darlene says:

    I actually helped Kendall and Thomas with Shelby. My sister lives next door and we both kept an eye on her while Kendall made arrangements to get her placed. So glad to hear that she is doing well. These two kids are amazing, and went to great lengths to see that Shelby was taken to a safe place.

  36. Ellen says:

    Glad that she fell off the truck and survived! Lucky Shelby finally to have the right people in her life. Thanks to the her first rescuers and then to Animal Place for giving her a forever home! 🙂

  37. Randall Beatty says:

    I never eat Veal when I found out how the calves are treated, also I do not buy anything that comes from factory farms do not believe in them all they want is money care nothing about the animals they raise, only how much money they take in at the end of the day. Never will support any farms like this that goes for all farm animals cows, chickens etc. I am so happy that this calf is safe forever from farms that would use the calf then send it to slaughter. Thank you for being there. God bless the work you do to keep farms animals safe.
    Randy Beatty

  38. Susan McGraw Keber says:

    We are very pleased to contribute to the purchase of grass pellets for sweet Shelby. Thank you so much for caring for her and the other animals you kindly help back to a happier life. A vegan as of this summer, I never enjoyed or pined for animals to eat. My motto is this: If it has eyes to look at me I do not want to eat it…that goes for marine life as well. Bless you all for the hard work you do. May Shelby live in your care as a happy girl forever.

  39. I’m really glad she was found by kind good hearted people! At least she’s in good hands and won’t suffer the savage treatment of animals in Factory Farms! I don’t understand why the Govt can’t step in and stop the horrors in Factory Farms!

  40. Bob Hislop says:


  41. meg says:

    The day I became vegan about 7 years ago was the best and easiest things I’ve ever done for the animals and myself. People don’t realize that they use animals for their own benefit but it’s ironic. We receive far more benefit by not using animals for our benefit.