Animal Place rescues farmed animals from slaughter, provides them with permanent sanctuary or homes, and promotes veganism. We operate a 600-acre sanctuary in Grass Valley, California and a 60-acre adoption center in Vacaville, Calif. Each year, more than 2,500 chickens, turkeys, goats, sheep and other farmed animals find new homes through our rescue and adoption program.
Imagine your confusion and horror if, while walking on federal public lands, your dog stumbles across a device that looks like a sprinkler. Orange powder sprays all over your dog. That powder is sodium cyanide and it creates lethal hydrogen cyanide gas upon contact with moisture, resulting in a rapid and painful death.
This scenario has played out hundreds of times with companion dogs in the last 10 years, the most recent victim being the dog of a 14 year old boy in Idaho. The “sprinkler”? An M-44 cyanide trap laid by the United States Department of Agriculture Wildlife Services in an effort to control the population of wildlife species, all using taxpayer dollars.
M-44s are placed on public lands, often without public notice, with the goal of killing coyotes and other wild canids often to protect animals exploited for animal agriculture from predation. The “bite and pull” method by which they are deployed is indiscriminate, and often the “incidental” victim of an M-44 is a non-predatory species, a companion animal, typically dogs, or a human. Additional example of Wildlife Services’ cruel practices include aerial depredation, or harassing and shooting wild animals from helicopters, and wire traps that maim any animal they catch, leading to an agonizing and slow death.
The rationale for USDA Wildlife Services’ work is that the threat to animal agriculture exceeds the costs and risks of “predator control”. There is little empirical evidence to support this claim. In addition to a Livestock Indemnity Program that compensates producers for animals killed by wildlife, there are many inexpensive, proactive, and non-lethal methods of protecting herds and flocks from predators. Ironically, predator species encroach upon ranches and farms because they have been driven out of their habitats and their ecological niches destroyed by pollution and deforestation caused by animal agriculture.
Wildlife Services’ methods kill more animals, many of whom are threatened or endangered, points to their ineffectiveness. Add to these cruel methods of population control the fact that more and more scientific reports conclude that Wildlife Services causes environmental harm through lost biodiversity and disrupted ecological systems. In the words of Kelly Nokes, an advocate with WildEarth Guardians, “The federal government has a paramount duty to protect people and wildlife from deadly poisons that unnecessarily endanger the public, wildlife and companion animals”. There is no justification for or benefit from the USDA Wildlife Services’ taxpayer funded, ineffective, non-transparent, and unaccountable war on wildlife.
While USDA Wildlife Services has historically been influenced by the power of corporate animal agriculture and hunting lobbies in what programs they choose to operate and how, the fact remains that they rely on taxpayer dollars to operate those programs. As a taxpayer and American citizen, you have the power to declare Wildlife Services’ practices unjust and to demand change.
It will take a change in federal law, a federal legal injunction, or a determination by the USDA to temporarily or permanently stop the use of M-44 cyanide traps. There is currently an indefinite ban in Idaho, a temporary injunction in Colorado, and a temporary ban in six Oregon counties. Additionally, several activist organizations are suing to implement a nationwide legal ban via the federal court system while other organizations are introducing federal legislation[10, 11]. But there is still a need for civic action.
Going vegan and encouraging others to do the same will reduce the demand for animal products. As the market shrinks, fewer ranchers and farmers will request that Wildlife Services kill predators to protect herds and flocks. A switch to plant-based agriculture will also hopefully lessen the environmental impacts that pressure wildlife into conflict with humans. That being said, “pest” management on plant-based farms can be harmful and lethal to wildlife as well, so it is important to contact farms and ask them about their handling of wild animals, like rats, mice, and birds. Financially supporting farms and companies focused on feeding the world in truly sustainable and ethical fashions will be critical in protecting our health, animals, the environment, and the future.
 Bump, Philip. “A Dog in Idaho Was Killed by a Cyanide Trap Laid by the U.S. Government.” TheWashington Post, 21 March 2017, www.washingtonpost.com/news/politics/wp/2017/03/21/a-dog-in-idaho-was-killed-by- -cyanide-trap-laid-by-the-u-s-government/?utm_term=.4783bdb000ba.
 United States, Department of Agriculture, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Services. “M-44 Device for Predator Control.” June 2017. www.aphis.usda.gov/publications/wildlife_damage/fs-m44-device.pdf.
 Knudson, Tom. “The killing agency: Wildlife Services’ brutal methods leave a trail of animal death.” The Sacramento Bee, 8 October 2014, http://www.sacbee.com/news/investigations/wildlife-investigation/article2574599.html.
 Bale, Rachel. “This Government Program’s Job Is to Kill Wildlife.” National Geographic, 12 February 2016, https://news.nationalgeographic.com/2016/02/160212-Wildlife-Services-predator-control-livestock-trapping-hunting/.
 United States, Department of Agriculture, Farm Service Agency. “Livestock Indemnity Program.”October 2017. https://www.fsa.usda.gov/Assets/USDA-FSA-Public/usdafiles/FactSheets/2017/lip_fact_s heet_oct2017.pdf
 Project Coyote. (n.d.). Nonlethal Solutions to Reduce Conflicts: Helping Livestock and Predator to Coexist. Retrieved from http://www.projectcoyote.org/programs/ranching_with_wildlife/nonlethal-solutions-reduce-conflicts/
 The Humane Society of the United States. (2016). Wildlife Disservice: The USDA Wildlife Services’ Inefficient and Inhumane Wildlife Damage Management Program (Rep.). Retrieved from http://www.humanesociety.org/assets/pdfs/wildlife/wildlife-services-white-paper-2015.pdf
 Project Coyote. (2017, August 10). Conservationists Seek Nationwide Ban on Wildlife-killing M-44 ‘Cyanide Bombs’ [Press release]. Retrieved from http://www.projectcoyote.org/conservationists-seek-nationwide-ban-wildlife-killing-m-44-cyanide-bombs/
 Predator Defense. (n.d.). The USDA’s War on Wildlife. Retrieved from https://www.predatordefense.org/USDA.htm
 Theen, Andrew. “Environmental groups petition EPA to ban cyanide devices linked to wolf death.” The Oregonian, 10 August 2017 http://www.oregonlive.com/environment/index.ssf/2017/08/environmental_groups_petition.html.
 The Chemical Poisons Reduction Act of 2017, H.R. 1817, 115th Congress (2017).
Runners, walkers, chicken lovers unite and join Animal Place for a 5K fun run where you can sprint, jog, or stroll past the cows, pigs, sheep, chickens, rabbits, and goats! Dress up as your favorite barnyard pal (chickens, obvs)…you might get a medal for that. Profits from this event go directly toward liberating hens from battery cages and the purchase of a new property for our rescue and adoption program…so make sure you sign up for a fund-racing page and encourage your friends, family, and everyone you know to donate.
An Important Announcement Regarding our Rescue and Adoption Program
It is with mixed feelings that I announce a temporary closure of our Rescue Ranch program, as we raise much-needed funds and seek property to continue our large-scale rescue and adoption program.
You are a vital part of this transition; the chickens need your support moving forward.
Whether you have adopted, volunteered, helped with de-clumping or health checks, promoted us on social media, or donated to help liberated hens…I want your help to make our next steps a success. Not want…need. There are hens languishing in cages now whom all of us want to save, and I know we will with your aid.
In 1989 I started Animal Place on 60 acres in Vacaville, California. In 2010, we expanded to our 600-acre Grass Valley, California location. The move allowed us to turn our original Vacaville site into Rescue Ranch, an adoption and rescue center
Our dream was to liberate hens from egg farms.
After our move, we began fulfilling that dream and started rescuing hens directly from California egg farms. With you by our side, we have saved more than 26,000 hens’ lives through this campaign. It is the only rescue program of its kind in the country.
At Rescue Ranch, we nurse the hens back to health, give them medical treatments, help them regain their strength, and then place them in forever homes through our adoption program.
Unfortunately, zoning issues prevent us from continuing at our current location, and we are selling the Vacaville property. Though we are sad to have to sell this beautiful space, we have high hopes for the future.
Hen rescues are on hold until we move, but this is not the end of Rescue Ranch. (Note: Our main sanctuary in Grass Valley, where our 500 permanent residents live, is safe!)
We are actively searching for new property where we can continue this one-of-a-kind, large-scale rescue and adoption program. We want to remain in the greater Bay Area, so we can reach the most people, be accessible to the public, and be an efficient home base for traveling to and from egg farms. We also see an opportunity to establish an “urban sanctuary” open for tours, events, and other educational programs.
How you can help:
Donate: Though we are still searching for a new property, we already know it will cost a significant amount to purchase and build a peaceful sanctuary for our rescue hens. Chip in with a tax-deductible donation now and be one of the first to support our revitalized Rescue Ranch program!
Promote: We understand that not everyone can give financially, but many of you wonderful supporters have emails, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. We will keep you updated and hope that you will spread the word about this life-saving fundraising campaign.
Last but not least, I am eternally grateful to the staff and volunteers who have helped run Rescue Ranch over the years. Without them, none of it would have been possible. Special gratitude to Jan Galeazzi, Darren Roth, Blake Caraska, Marji Beach, and Kelcie Leach.
Please know that our entire staff is 100 percent committed to continuing this one-of-a-kind program. We just need to find the perfect new home for it.
P.S. There is a long road ahead and we will make sure to keep you updated. Our most genuine thanks for all of your support as we find a new sanctuary for our rescue hens.
About the position: The Membership Coordinator is responsible for maintaining the donor database, processing gifts through the database as well as developing and implementing activities designed to attain and retain donors.
Main job tasks and responsibilities
Prepare and edit donor correspondence
Generate donor prospect leads through a variety of sources
Identify and invite donors to Animal Place events
Prepare acknowledgement letters and thank donors for their gifts
Contact donors to resolve questions, inconsistencies, and issuing data related to their donations
Return phone calls and emails from donors with questions/issues
Phone donors to thank for their contributions
Call donors to solicit gifts
Input donor information into database (use Salesforce)
Merge data from the database, print letters, check for errors, route for signing and mailing
Make necessary corrections to information entered in the database and keep track of the corrections
Generate detailed and appropriate reports through Salesforce
Create and implement a donor recruitment plan
Promote Animal Place to prospective donors
Develop and implement plan for upgrading giving level of existing donors
Coordinate the monthly giving program (craft monthly correspondence letter, prepare mailing labels, oversee credit card deductions, send monthly communication via snail mail and email
Assist the director increase number of monthly donors and giving amounts
Familiar with or quick to learn Pardot marketing tool and Classy fundraising platform
Compile donor packets
Assist Executive Director when requested
Submit matching gift request forms
Supervise data entry staff
Required skill sets
Familiar with donor bases
Writing and copy editing (include samples)
Attention to detail and accuracy
Familiar with social media channels and technology
Computer and relevant software
Understanding of standard office administrative practices and procedures
Able to analyze and problem solve individually and cooperatively
Sound judgment and decision-making
Knowledge of and interest in veganism and animal rights issues
Support of Animal Place’s mission and campaigns
Experience in communications, public relations or nonprofit membership
Excellent written and verbal skills
Experience working with donor databases, specifically Salesforce (or comparable)
Familiarity with Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, PowerPoint)
Adaptable and flexible
Comfortable working collaboratively
Possess an open communication style
Self-motivated, energetic learner
Highly organized with ability to meet tight deadlines
Experience with nonprofit organizations
Familiarity with Salesforce, Pardot, and Classy ideal but not required
College degree preferred but not required
Valid U.S. driver’s license and a satisfactory driving record.
Comfortable with country and small town living
Salary and benefits: Salary based on experience, medical coverage, paid vacation and holidays.
About Animal Place: Animal Place is a nonprofit sanctuary for farmed animals and an education/advocacy organization. It operates several facilities: a 600-acre permanent sanctuary in Grass Valley, CA; a 60-acre farmed animal adoption center in Vacaville, CA; a brick and mortar vegan store in Berkeley, CA; a 15-acre residential internship property in Grass Valley; and a 7-acre onsite Guest House and educational site in Grass Valley, CA (next door to the sanctuary).
The United States version of Mother’s Day started in the 1850s in response to growing rates of infant mortality. Members of Mothers Day Work Clubs would render aid to sons on both sides of the Civil War. The founder of modern Mother’s Day, Anna Reeves Jarvis, spent her entire life savings trying to stop the commercialization of the holiday.
While Mother’s Day has become a $20 billion dollar commercial enterprise, we channel the anti-war, anti-violence pronouncements of the 1850s and apply it to our nonhuman mothers and sisters. Right now a campaign of violence is being perpetrated against billions. A one-sided war so ingrained in our culture that most of us daily participate in the sanctioned blood-letting of innocents, other animals who have as much desire to breathe, live, love as you or I. We have made these victims invisible, dis-assembling them behind closed doors, and reducing once vibrant beings to packaged parts.
The Dairy Industry Creates Orphans
Cows on dairies are artificially inseminated every 12-13 months! For nine months, they nurture and grow a calf inside them. Like most mothers, there is a certain expectation that when that calf is born, nurturing, grooming, and nursing will follow. Yet on most dairies, calves are stolen from their mothers immediately after birth. Her calf’s milk is sold for human consumption.
Male calves will be killed. Female calves will replace their mothers, who are killed.
We create orphans for a forgotten meal.
A Mother’s Voice Never Heard
Did you know that hens speak to their chicks throughout incubation? One of the most important social bonds – that between a mother and her offspring – occurs before chicks even hatch. When they are born, day-old chicks know the unique tenor of their mother’s voice and she knows theirs…they too begin to chirp back to her a day or so prior to hatching. Yet virtually all chicks born into the egg industry are hatched in artificial incubators.
Male chicks are ground up alive. Female chicks are mutilated, their beaks partially amputated without pain relief. Hens are slaughtered at a fraction of their lifespan.
We deny chicks their mother’s voice for a forgotten meal.
Cruel Confinement and Separation
Within 72 hours of birth, farmers cut off the tails of piglets, rip out their needle teeth, cut notches out of their ears, and castrate males…all without anesthesia. In the wild, piglets are weaned at 4-6 months old and females stay with their mothers for their whole lives. Yet farmers remove piglets within 2-3 weeks of birth, stolen from their mothers who are crammed into cages so small they cannot turn around.
Male and female pigs will be raised in concrete pens for 6-8 months and killed. Their mothers will spend 3-5 years in crates.
All for flesh no human being requires for survival. We destroy families for a forgotten meal.
Change Your View
When you empathize with other animals, it becomes easier to see them as unique individuals who experience joy, feel pain, and form social bonds with one another. It becomes harder to see them as forgotten meals.
Adopting a vegan lifestyle is embracing joy and rejecting needless suffering and cruelty. It is recognizing the inherent right of other animals to be respected and free from intentional harm by humans. It is about being as kind and just as possible. Veganism causes less harm.
Once you have completed a one-day volunteer orientation the next step is to enroll in our volunteer mentoring program. During this program, you will participate in supervised volunteering alongside a more experienced volunteer. They will help answer questions and give instructions as needed. When you have successfully completed three (or more) supervised shifts you will be free to work on your own.
Below you will find a Google calendar with our experienced volunteers’ availability for mentoring. Please choose 1-3 shifts and add your name to the schedule. We do require at least two weeks notice before a mentored shift in order to give the mentor adequate time to prepare.
Barn cleaning shifts are from 8:30am to 12:30pm and are shown in green.
Socialization shifts are from 10:00am to 12:00pm or 12:00pm to 2:00pm and are shown in purple.
Whether it’s barn cleaning, animal socializing, giving tours, or helping out at events, we depend on our volunteers to keep everything running smoothly. We are so thankful to all the individuals who give their time to Animal Place, and our animal residents. In honor of National Volunteer Week, we’re highlighting 1-2 Animal Place volunteers each day this week. Below are just a few incredible people who volunteer with Animal Place regularly.
Jodi has been volunteering with us for almost 5 years! Here, she tells us why she has given so much of her time to Animal Place.
Debbie Malenke has been volunteering with Animal Place since 2017 but it feels like we’ve known her forever. Debbie Says,“My favorite thing about volunteering is how peaceful I feel the moment I’m on the property and with the animals. I am always in awe and they never fail to make me smile and laugh out loud!”
Sabrina tells us about how bonding with one animal resident, led her to growing relationships with many others!
Alida has been volunteering with Animal Place since 2013. We’re always grateful to have her come all the way down from Truckee to help out. Alida says, “I only knew the love and affection I shared with dogs and cats, but now have the wonderful experience of that love and affection with farmed animals, and see them all as unique beings with individual personalities and needs.”
Brenda tells us a little about why she volunteers with us!
Susan McCracken has been volunteering with Animal Place since 2011 and she’s an expert level socializer. Susan says, “Being with the animals brings me such peace and joy. It is definitely my favorite part of volunteering.”
Organization Description: Animal Place is an animal rights organization promoting the complete protection of farmed animals and a vegan lifestyle. We operate a 600-acre sanctuary in Grass Valley, CA that serves as a permanent safe haven for farmed animals and an education center. Adjacent to the Grass Valley Sanctuary is our Guest House, which houses visitors and volunteers. We also have a 60-acre Rescue Ranch facility in Vacaville, CA. Rescue Ranch provides temporary home for adoptable farmed animals, with a special emphasis on chickens from the egg industry. We operate an all-vegan store in Berkeley, CA, and facilitate multiple educational campaigns throughout the United States. If you are unfamiliar with Animal Place, visit our website at www.animalplace.org before considering applying.
Job Title: Barn Cleaner
Job Status: Part-Time, Grass Valley
Immediate Supervisor: Animal Care Director
Job Description: The Part-Time Barn Cleaner assists in the care of the 500 animals (pigs, chickens, cows, turkeys, sheep, goats, rabbits) living at the sanctuary under supervision of the Animal Care Director. Barn Cleaners are responsible for cleaning and maintaining animal living quarters. See below for specific responsibilities and duties.
Passionate about working for and with farmed animals
Keen interest in the animal welfare/rights movement is encouraged
Vegan preferred (vegetarian minimum)
Reliable and dependable
Good animal behavior and observation skills
Able to work outdoors in all weather conditions, including cold/wet weather (average low is 35F) and hot summers (average high is 95-100F)
Able to lift 40-50 pounds and perform strenuous/manual labor
Work well with a variety of people
Strong communication and listening skills
Able to follow detailed instructions and meet time sensitive demands
Able to learn and process new information quickly
Team player and self-motivator
Committed to Animal Place’s mission and a desire to be a part of the Animal Place family
Willing to work on weekend/holidays/varying shift times
Valid driver’s license and good driving record (subject to verification)
Daily cleaning duties and maintaining the shelter areas
Re-stocking feed, straw, and supplies
Assisting caregivers with basic feeding and caring of animals when needed
Hours/Days: 16-24 hours/week, part-time, days off vary; schedule subject to change anytime, required to work Saturdays and Sundays, required to work most holidays
Salary: $11-$12 per hour, depending on experience
Start Date: Immediate
How to Apply: Submit a cover letter and resume to firstname.lastname@example.org
Please send both in the body of email and do not send attachments. In subject line, write Part-Time Barn Cleaner.