Anatolian Shepherds Page

Monday, March 30, 2009

The Almquist Family - "Forever Wild"

Last night EMHE was about a family in Phelan, CA that helps out a lot of abandoned and abused exotic animals through their exotic animal sanctuary, "Forever Wild." Kind of like our local "Cat Tales." These are animals that someone decided was a cute and cuddly baby, but then didn't want any more when that baby grew up to be an unpredictable wild animal. Some of the large cats had been de-clawed, and it sounds like that is not very successful in big cats, because it seems that many of them had to have surgeries to correct serious problems from the original de-clawing. So sad. My heart goes out to any animal that is placed in a home and then abandoned. These animals can never be introduced into the wild, because they've been taken care of all their lives. The only thing that will happen is that they will go looking for someone to take care of them.

In addition to large cats, there were tortoises, horses, dogs, pigs, goats, a deer, a parrot of some kind, and many varieties of (poisonous) snakes.

The Almquist Family was running this learning facility to care for the animals, but their house was falling apart, and infested with mice. They were spending their own money to provide meat for the animals, and preparing it in their own kitchen. The Dad (Joel) had been recently laid off from his job.

EMHE built them a new home plus a really impressive new learning center, with a specialty kitchen for the animal food preparation, and housing for the animals, complete with play yard. They provided solar panels to offset 70% of the electricity needed to operate the facility. They were given 4-year college educations for their four children. A brand new Ford F150 truck that had a computer and printer built into it (That's so cool!)

EMHE sent them to Costa Rica on vacation (glorious warmth!), and the family was given the opportunity to work at another facility there helping build a bridge so that monkeys wouldn't get electrocuted on power lines or ran over by cars crossing the busy streets.

What an interesting family, and what an impressive build. It held my attention for two hours!

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