Our farm animals: New and remembered animal friends

newborn goatNew baby goats 2016

Our New Baby Goats-Spring 2016

mom licking newborn goat


Mae-Mae and Jo-Jo

In December 2015, generous supporters Jennifer and John Putnam donated two baby rescue donkeys or jennets to share with each of you. These sweet animals are living in our Small Barn, and are named Mae-Mae and Jo-Jo, thanks to the Jennifer’s and John’s son. According to Thom Arcadi, our Farm Manager, “donkeys have a long tradition in the ranch. Miss Connolly, who donated the land for the ranch, loved donkeys and had a lot over the years. She and her family always donkeys had in the paddock where the donkeys are now.” These best friends were rescued by  the Peaceful Valley Donkey Rescue and transported from the satellite adoption center east of Sacramento by Jennifer and her son. Jennifer, the Executive Director of the Grape Growers Association, personally donated the $500 adoption fee for both donkeys.

Your contribution will help keep these sweet animals happy and healthy.The donkeys eat about a bale of hay a week.  A bale costs about $20.  They need their hooves trimmed every 10 weeks at $60 a trimming and they will each need shots and medications costing about $100 a year. Support, come and visit these new farm animals!

We appreciate your donation to help ensure the happiness and health of our new residents!

Cupcake the Donkey
On October 15, 2015 at the age of 20, our beloved Cupcake passed away. Her life sparked many happy memories that are being shared on this page. Please send your images and words to Andrea and we will post them.

….Porter’s Mom, Kate, sends this picture of Porter and Cupcake with the message, “Cupcake will be missed.”





…Peggy Bolle, longtime volunteer at the Ranch, shares this tribute anface cupcakeunnamedd photos:Cupcakeunnamedflowers cupcakeunnamedIt is always hard to lose a creature you’ve become accustomed to having around. The silencing of Cupcake’s bray leaves quite a hole in the soundscape of the ranch. We will miss her bashful nature; you could practically feel her blush every time someone asked if she were going to have a baby soon. She’d bat her long eyelashes and lower her head when people mentioned her size. Poor girl…we don’t all get to choose our physique. 

It was nearly a miracle of nature that she could rollover to scratch her back, but she did, often. Of course, that left a handful of dirt in her coat that would settle in the trough of her spine, where the sides welled up alongside it. I wondered if, when it rained, she were in danger of it sprouting grass, like an old, neglected gutter. We tried to brush the dirt out, but Cupcake really  needed vacuuming to get clean. We never got to try that, but I bet she would have loved it! 
She was treated, by Suspect, as a poor relation to be embarrassed about. Rarely did they share a stall, and never for long. Suspect would eat the best of the hay, and leave her to clean up what he didn’t like. Little did he know how thrifty donkeys are; she did just fine with that arrangement. 
Compared to a horse, a donkey is quiet, unassuming, unflappable and so, so soft, love-able and cuddly. At least Cupcake was. She was never demanding, but always accepting; easy to overlook on a busy day, but trusting, patient and watchful. She would wait her turn and then graciously accept all the brushing and fussing we could give her. When she brayed, everyone else in the barn would have to give way and “yield the floor”: no one could compete with the braying of that donkey. Once she finished, there would be a moment of silence, while everyone’s eardrums readjusted. Then the other creatures would resume their chatter, and Cupcake would stand in quiet dignity, knowing that while she often was “in the background”, when she needed to, she could assert herself and bring the whole business to a screeching halt.