Latest News



July 23, 2014

It’s too awful to even contemplate. We had calls from people saying there was a rooster dumped at the wharf who looked like his rear end had been set on fire. It took us a few days to find and catch him. He had no tail feathers, and sure enough his bum was hard and dark black and looked “melted”. We’ve never allowed roosters to physically come here (with all our rescued battery hens, we can’t take a chance of fertile clutches)… but for the first time in 12 years, I brought a rooster home with me. I just couldn’t leave him to suffer. Gregory was clearly handraised, because he was calm during treatments, and literally purred when we scratched his neck. He’s healed really well, has a nice fluffy bum where his feathers are growing back, and now desperately needs a home. Gregory is beautiful and friendly, so I’m praying someone out there wants a lovely boy to care for their girls. He will keep your hens from fighting, protect them from hawks, and look like a stunning piece of garden art. Please contact me (Shawn) on or 09-422-7322 if you’re able to adopt Gregory. If you can’t adopt him, would you please share this so that other people might? Thank you so much.

rat resort


July 22, 2014

We’ve been inundated by rats, but in a good way! All at the same time, several people asked if we would ‘babysit’ their beloved rats while they travelled overseas. Just as their human companions are no doubt enjoying their time in exciting places like Sydney and Brazil, our 10 guest rats seem to be loving their own holiday at our “Rat Resort”. Fascinating smells, different toys, new places to explore, special treats, lots of cuddles and pampering: what’s not to love?! Some people wouldn’t think that turning your guest bathroom into a rat play area each day is a good idea, but we think it’s brilliant!! And with this cold weather, it’s been great to have a couple of warm rats snuggled up inside my hoodie throughout the day. We’ll miss these dear sweet ratties when they go back to their real homes soon.  (For our second rat story, see below)

jess rats


If our Rat Resort story {above} reminded you that you’ve been wanting to adopt a couple of these snuggly creatures for yourself, then please consider Darth and Vadar. They are two sweet rats who were rescued and are now in need of a loving home. Both are males over a year old, and love attention. With good fostering they are now pretty friendly and enjoy being stroked and scratched. Soon they’ll be full-on cuddlers. The fosterer’s cat has been traumatising them, though, so we’d love to see them go to a caring home soon. If you can give these boys a wonderful life, please contact Jess at or 0220884621 (The rats are in Wellsford, but we could transport to Auckland if necessary)



July 21, 2014

Here’s something exciting for us: A lovely lady named Danielle came up for a working bee. She wanted to meet the animals and see what we were all about. Since then, Danielle has organised her own working bee with friends and family… AND she has announced that she’s holding a fundraiser called “Fight 4 the Animals”. It turns out that Danielle has been taking boxing lessons, and is going to hold her first public fight in September. She decided to turn it into a fundraiser for our animal sanctuary. Now THAT’S a first for us! If you’d like to support Danielle’s efforts with a small contribution (or a large one, hee hee), click on this link:      And for a very different animal event, read the story below…

shifting colours


A special event is being held for Fiona Sussman’s wonderful new novel, “Shifting Colours”… and the funds raised will be donated to our animal sanctuary. MMK (Matakana Market Kitchens) is putting on a beautiful morning tea – the menu looks delicious; Fiona will be there to read segments, talk with us, and answer our questions; and well-known literary personality Graham Beattie will MC and interview Fiona. I’ve read her book, and was spellbound from cover to cover. It’s a rare chance to get up close and personal with the author while enjoying scrumptious food. All for $20. Friday, 15 August, MMK (2 Matakana Valley Rd) You can buy tickets at Imelda’s Shoe Store in Warkworth; The Village Bookshop in Matakana; or phone 09-423-0315 to book with credit card. Tickets limited to 80 people. I hope to see you there. (Thanks to Sanctuary Supporters Glenys & Linda for making our animal sanctuary the charity recipient of this fabulous event!)



July 20, 2014

Sometimes as I sit at the computer and on the phone for hours, trying to find homes for desperate animals, I wish I was outside with my own guys instead. Then a home comes through, and Voila! I’m so happy that I was able to help make that match. We’ve found new homes for a range of creatures great and small this week, and here’s a note I just received from Ellen De Goat’s “mum”:
“Just wanted to offer you a thousand thankyous for helping me find a home for my goat Ellen. A lovely family from Clevedon came and collected Ellen yesterday to take her to their place where she will finally have the company of other goats. Their male goat lost his partner a few weeks ago so she’ll even have a mate. I couldn’t have asked for a better family to take her. They were wonderful in handling her and I could see Ellen will have a lovely life out on their farm. Again, thank you and keep up the wonderful work you do.”
Oh yes, THAT’s why we do this!!

rita hens


July 19, 2014

Some time ago we had a rescue where many of the hens had broken legs or broken wings (from the cruelty of the workers on the battery farm). One hen named CC had BOTH her legs broken, and we worried about finding the right home for her. Happily Rita adopted her and a couple of her sisters. This morning Rita sent a photo and an update:
“Oh they’re so happy!! When I’m gardening I give them the odd worm (I feel terrible for the worm though) but they get so excited. They follow us everywhere, it’s pretty cool. I can’t believe how friendly they are, vs our other chickens who won’t even let us pet them or get anywhere near them. CC’s comb was floppy and very pale for a long time, now it’s finally upright and full of colour like the others! CC is amazing. She runs downhill using her wings with her feet barely touching the ground. It’s so impressive how she has adapted. Thanks again it’s been awesome! We are looking to buy some land up north and I hope to one day be able to rescue so many more.”
Thanks Rita. These happy endings make my day!

vicki happy hens


July 18, 2014

I do love to hear from people who have adopted animals from us. We receive many lovely photos and stories, showing them enjoying life in their new homes. This photo from Vicki really made me smile. She says the rescued battery hens she adopted have become part of the family, and enjoy their social time on the deck with her. Many people don’t realise that hens can be as affectionate and interactive as cats and dogs. This photo is worth a thousand words!!