Ellen DeGeneres has partnered with Farm Sanctuary to promote Adopt a Turkey for Thanksgiving. As a vegan and a friend to all animals, DeGeneres never fails to lend her support to help make the life of an animal safe, happy, and healthy.
Says DeGeneres, "Save a life this Thanksgiving, and join me in starting a new tradition by adopting a turkey instead of eating one through Farm Sanctuary's Adopt-A-Turkey Project."
This program has been in effect since 1986, and is still going strong. With your help, it can continue to grow.
For a one-time donation gift of just $30, adopters will receive a special Adopt-A-Turkey certificate, featuring a color photo of and fun details about their new friend, and the great feeling of knowing they are sponsoring the care of a turkey who has been rescued from cruelty. These donations help Farm Sanctuary educate and advocate for turkeys, and other farm animals, everywhere. This year’s “adoptable” turkeys include: Velma, Daphne, Kima, Harley, Reese and Jordan.(see slideshow for pictures of your potential adoptee!)
In addition to Adopt a Turkey, the good people at Farm Sanctuary are working hard to encourage President Obama via petition to send the two turkeys traditionally pardoned at Thanksgiving each year to their world class facility in Watkins, NY. This will be the third straight year that Farm Sanctuary has tried to get the White House to allow them to be the caregiver for the saved birds. While the idea of a pardon to save their lives is noble, the fact is, where they send these birds (a Disney theme park) isn't as well equipped to deal with the health issues a commercially raised bird experiences.
Commercially-raised turkeys like those pardoned by the president are selectively bred to grow extremely large and fast, painfully de-beaked and de-toed, raised in crowded, filthy conditions, and fed diets designed to make them gain more weight. As a result, these birds are prone to serious health issues and require special care to thrive.
At Farm Sanctuary’s shelters, where turkeys live an average of four to five years, the birds’ weight is carefully monitored and controlled with a high-fiber feed. They have access to top-of-the line veterinary care, living environments designed specifically for their comfort, and the attention of trained caregivers.
“After decades of selective breeding, commercially-raised turkeys are prone to serious health issues and require experienced care and attention to live healthy and comfortable lives,” states Farm Sanctuary’s petition. “At Disney theme parks, which have been entrusted with the care of pardoned turkeys since 2005, many of the turkeys have died within one year. At Farm Sanctuary, these birds can live happily and comfortably for many years.”
Did you know that turkeys make great pets? For those who live on country property, a turkey can be as good as or sometimes better than a dog for yard protection. I worked with a wonderful lady named Debby. She and her family adopted a turkey one year, not really knowing much about how to raise one or what to do with it once they brought it home. She was simply motivated to save its life. They named him Tom. I know; not very original. However, after picking her family veterinarian's brain on turkey care, Tom grew up happy and healthy. He attached himself to her son, following him around just like their pet dog. He even gets along with the family cat! Tom likes to peck at the young boys window, waits for him every day to get home from school by sitting on the front porch, and actively patrols their large yard. He's a member of the family.
Now, you don't have to go so far as to bring a turkey home to curl up on the sofa with you, but with your help in sponsoring a turkey for Thanksgiving, and lending your voice to Farm Sanctuary's effort to provide the new forever home to this year's Oval Office pardoned turkeys, you can be sure you've helped save the life of someone like Tom.
As always, a heart-felt thank you to Meredith Turner and Michelle King of Farm Sanctuary for providing this vital information with me to share with all of you!
Newly Published! HARVEST, an original short story by Michele Gwynn is now available for download in PDF on Lulu.com. Harvest tells the fictional tale of what happens when human greed and gluttony override compassion and humane treatment of cattle in feedlots. When Dave Forrester wakes to discover that everyone he knows in Farley, Oklahoma has disappeared, it's up to him to discover why, and figure out how to save the few who survive ... the harvest.
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More from Michele Gwynn: Ms. Gwynn is also the San Antonio Sex & Relationships Examiner. Her humor in explaining "the unexplainable" goes hand in hand with her candor. She has even interviewed celebrities for her column, and a former UN Ambassador for a local San Antonio newspaper.
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