Big Sky Ranch Animal Sanctuary was established in 2002. Originally a hobby farm, Big Sky Ranch would become known to so many animals as a “Safe Haven” and an opportunity to recover from their past lives or professions, as well as restore their trust & faith in humans.
From 2002 until 2004, the facility was privately funded and operated by Mr. Andy Parent, Founder of Big Sky Ranch Animal Sanctuary. During this time, Andy discovered that not only cats and dogs would desperately be in need of an alternative, but so would larger farm animals that didn’t always fit into regular rescue protocols. And so it began – animal after animal would arrive, either announced by their former owners or, un-announced and abandoned, left behind to fend for themselves. During the care and attention these animals would receive, Andy not only discovered characteristics of abuse in many different forms – but also that many of these animals were simply misunderstood. Andy understood that something had to be done for these animals or animal welfare in general. The sights and conditions of some of these animals were too devastating for anyone to ignore.
By 2004, Andy had an astounding 125 animals at the Sanctuary, a far stretch from the original hobby farm – which consisted of only four animals. The result was clear; not only did the animals need this facility, but so did the community and surrounding communities. The Sanctuary and all of its animals soon needed to gain financial support. Local and international media was contacted and the story of Big Sky Ranch Animal Sanctuary would be the name of the rescue facility that has slowly become known to so many.
Today, Big Sky Ranch Animal Sanctuary is the only non-kill Sanctuary of its kind in Eastern and Southern Ontario, due to its nature of working with many kinds of animals as opposed to limiting its resources to a limited few. To date, the ranch has helped over 1,800 animals of different kinds and sizes achieve a happy and healthy future through its rehabilitation and adoption programs. Big Sky Ranch Animal Sanctuary resides on 26 acres of land and currently houses over 100 abused and unwanted animals such as horses, ponies, goats, donkeys, turkeys, ducks, geese, roosters, llamas, sheep, cats, dogs, rabbits, pigs, cows, buffalo, and emus!
Our non-kill policy has one compassionate exception — if any animal, upon veterinarian inspection and prognosis, has no chance at any sort of recovery and is found to be suffering and in chronic pain, the animal will undergo euthanasia. We do not want any animal suffering. Our main goals are to rehabilitate abused or injured animals, as well as to offer our services to any unwanted animals. The Sanctuary’s primary focus is entirely on behalf of animal welfare. We work with the animals through various therapy methods, nutritional practitioners, veterinarian services, medication, and visiting sessions. We use whatever measure it may take to ensure a positive outcome in the progression of healing for these animals.
Big Sky Ranch Animal Sanctuary will not place a time limit on any animal’s recovery rate or adoption rate.
After the animal’s rehabilitation, the Sanctuary does offer the animal a second chance for adoption (where possible), however some animals, sadly, will never be suitable for adoption. In those cases, the Sanctuary offers these special animals a permanent home to live out the rest of their natural lives amongst their own kind. As with humans, animals do get lonely and suffer from depression – they require companionship and above all, a reason to live.
In our community:
Big Sky Ranch Animal Sanctuary works hard to enable a better understanding between humans and animals, as most of these animals in our care have not only been mistreated in the past, but have also been misunderstood. We strive to improve relations between animals and humans, as well as educate people to a higher level of understanding when it comes to any animal-related issue.
These topics are addressed in many areas of the Sanctuary, be it through pamphlets, media interviews, off-site visits, tours, school visits, and summer day camps. Finally, the Sanctuary allows open public access and escorted visits (with a booked appointment). The Sanctuary also gives back to the community, involving itself on an educational and informative basis on many occasions, and opening its doors to volunteers of all ages.