Ronnie is an Alpine mixed breed goat who came to our farm in the spring of 2017. Before arriving at the farm, Ronnie had been saved by a good Samaritan who noticed him being walked by two young boys in a residential neighborhood, he was so young his umbilical cord was still attached. The good Samaritan offered to take him home since he needed more care than the boys could provide. She took him to her urban condo and bottle-fed him for a couple of weeks before reaching out to Forget Me Not Farm. After arriving at the farm, Ronnie quickly bonded with the other resident goats, and now spends his time climbing and sunbathing on the play-structure made especially for them. He has a mischievous streak and is one of our most social animals, following visitors around the pasture and begging for treats, which makes him quite memorable.
Maverick originally named Goose, came to the farm around the same time as Ronnie, during the kidding season of spring 2017. Mav is a Saanen mixed dairy breed who was in the back of a pick-up truck on the way to livestock auction yard when another good Samaritan rescued him from his dire situation. After several weeks of living on the patio deck, the good Samaritan realized he needed to be on a farm. She reached out to Forget Me Not Farm for help and soon Maverick joined our farm family. He is the largest of the five resident goats and always looks like he is smiling. He loves a good head scratch, yummy treats and human company.
Tickles has been at the farm the longest of the resident goats and is our only female goat. She came to the farm in the winter of 2015. Like Ronnie and Maverick, Tickles was rescued from a dangerous situation by a very kind family and brought to Forget Me Not Farm where she was bottle-fed by the children in our program. Bottle feeding creates a social connection between the animal and the humans who are caring for it, which is helpful in building trust. Tickles enjoys lounging in the sun with the other goats and sheep, and playing ‘Queen’ of the hill (play-structure), which she claims as her royal throne.
Mario and Luigi
Mario and Luigi are twin Nigerian Dwarf goats born in May of 2020. Born in the middle of a pandemic, these two adorable boys were gifted to Forget Me Not Farm to be a part of our outreach program. They make weekly visits to a special therapeutic preschool. There the children learned to bottle-feed them until they were weaned, and now help socialize, walk and train them. We don’t know who likes the playground more, the preschoolers or the goats! Mario and Luigi are the youngest animals on the farm, and have brought so much joy, laughter and love to everyone they meet. As they have grown, their confidence has to and they are often spotted playing and head-butting with the older goats and sheep.
Ace, Peanut, and Prince
There are three alpacas that make up our unique crew here at Forget Me Not Farm: Ace, who is the lightest in color, Peanut, and Prince, who is the darkest in color. They are all Suri alpacas, a breed characterized by their unique dread-locked fiber. This group of alpacas were transferred from the Safe Haven Llama and Alpaca Sanctuary in the Bitterroot Valley of Western Montana. Forget Me Not Farm staff were looking to add alpacas to our program and Safe Haven (a partner rescue farm) was over-crowded at the time with rescued animals. The alpacas joined our farm family in 2012 and are now enjoying their teenage years at FMNF. They are the shyest out of all the resident animals but will overcome that shyness for a leaf of kale or Swiss chard, they also love to get cooled off by a gentle shower from the hose when water troughs are being filled in the pasture.
Frida is a rescued llama that was left behind with her herd when their guardians sold their home and the new owners were unable to keep them. While llamas are very social with one another, it takes a great deal of time and patience for them to develop a relationship with humans. Commonly, our llamas will walk away if a person approaches them. They seem to prefer initiating the contact and spend time “checking out” a visitor before they get too close. The lesson for children who want to develop a relationship with Frida is learning to respect her boundaries.
Jerry Springer is a Hampshire mix Sheep. Born in early 2016 as a market lamb his prospect for a long life was improbable. He was destined to be sold and butchered at the county fair. As luck would have it, Jerry injured one of his legs, and after a course of antibiotics he was not eligible to be sold for meat. His owners had grown attached to Jerry and wanted him to find a lifelong home. Being bottle fed and hand raised made him very comfortable around humans. Raised to be butchered, his reprieve shows the children that anything is possible.
Theodore Roosevelt aka Teddy is a Dorper breed of sheep who was born on President’s Day in 2018. Teddy came to us as “bummer lamb”, one that is rejected by its mother after birth. Despite the term, Teddy is far from being a “bummer” and has a unique personality that matches his unique story of how he got to FMNF. After his young mother rejected him and his twin brother, Teddy managed to survive the coldest night of the year by crawling under an electric fence and finding some straw to keep himself warm. Forget Me Not Farm staff picked him up the following day and brought him to the farm where he was bottle-fed and hand-raised by staff and program participants. Being a Dorper breed, Teddy has an all-black face and an all-white body and is the smallest of the resident sheep. Although not a fan of the mud or rain, Teddy has his favorite spots to rest in the pasture, and always seems to enjoy a nice head rub.
Preston is the youngest of the resident sheep, but has already surpassed Teddy in size. He is a Suffolk mixed breed that was born at the Preston Winery in the spring of 2019. Sadly, he was rejected by his mother. Preston was intended to go to another animal sanctuary but they were unable to take care of him while he was being bottle-fed so we happily agreed to step in, because who doesn’t like to bottle-feed a baby lamb? Farm staff became quite attached to Preston as he continued to grow and bond with the rest of the sheep herd, so it was decided that Preston would become a permanent resident. Preston likes to show off his climbing skills and joins the goats on their play structure. He also discovered the shade underneath where he is often found relaxing. Preston is quite the social and loving sheep, and makes a great ambassador for the usually shy species.
Fern is an American Guinea Hog whose previous owners were displaced during the Coronavirus pandemic and relocated to Australia. Before leaving the family spent weeks seeking out the best forever home for their darling pet. Fern moved to Forget Me Not Farm the summer of 2020. She was born in 2015 and had been a part of a farm-based preschool. Because of her previous experience, she is quite friendly and accustomed to the symphony of animal noises that surround her here at Forget Me Not Farm. Fern loves wandering around the property, snoring (loudly) in her deluxe pig-loo and receiving lots of healthy treats from farm visitors.
Percy is a Vietnamese Pot Bellied pig that was born in 2013 and raised in the Oakland hills where he lived as an indoor/outdoor family pet. Percy even had his own bed in front of the television. His original owner had to give him up when she was moved to a care facility, but regularly calls to check in on him. Percy had been alone for a while at the beginning of the pandemic until Forget Me Not Farm was called to help. Percy has had quite the change in environment, but has adjusted wonderfully. He is quite the vocal pig, and delights staff and visitors by sticking out his tongue and wagging his tail.
Van Gogh is a rescue pig taken from the property of a dog hoarder. The dogs had chewed off his ears as they had gotten into his enclosure. After animal control seized all the animals on the property, Van Gogh eventually found his way to our farm for his forever home. We don’t know all of the details but Van Gogh can still hear and he is very social considering his past trauma. Van Gogh reminds us about resilience and hope for a better future.
Buddy is an Arab gelding born in 1988. Yep, you heard that right, Buddy is the oldest animal here at Forget Me Not Farm. He was displaced after the devastating 2017 wildfires. Because of his advanced age and medical needs caused by Cushing’s Syndrome, he was a very unlikely candidate for adoption. He survived three unsuccessful placements before staff at Forget Me Not Farm were contacted and opened up our barn doors to him. Since his arrival in early 2018 he has thrived at FMNF with routine veterinary care, medication and feed supplements. Buddy also receives some more interesting, unconventional treatments from a very special volunteer including certified animal massage therapy, equine light therapy, and Reiki work. He is a cherished member of the FMNF family with a spunky personality and so much love to give. The youth within our program absolutely love giving him hugs and having him companion walk with them around the pasture, with nothing tethering them together but the bond they have created.
Reno joined the farm in the winter of 2011. He certainly stands out from the crowd due to his striking paint markings, and his one blue and one brown eye. Reno came to the farm from a local cattle ranch where he suffered a fracture deep in his hoof and has severe arthritis in both front feet leaving him in constant pain and reluctant to walk. He has a new lease on life at the farm, receiving specially crafted orthopedic shoes as well as cutting edge pain management for his chronic and lifelong condition. He now spends his days nuzzling the children, looking in pockets for treats and enjoying the company of his pasture mates.
Starburst is a miniature horse that had previously been a companion to a competitive show horse before coming to Forget Me Not Farm in 2018. After losing his longtime companion his owner was looking for a placement that would give him opportunities to be with children as well as other animals. This self-posed mini horse was born in 2010, he is quite independent and has a personality full of sass.
Starburst shares a stall with our mini donkey, Carmen, and although their personalities could not be further apart, they have developed a close relationship.
Carmen, a miniature donkey, is our longest term resident at the Farm. In 2005 we rescued her from a breeding ranch in Oregon, where she was culled from the herd because she could not carry a foal to term. Fortunately for her a previous volunteer from Forget Me Not Farm was visiting the ranch and heard her story. Carmen’s owners were planning on taking her to the auction yard, but our volunteer convinced them she deserved to live a comfortable life in California. Carmen is our Farm Ambassador – always observing the other animal’s antics, always staying on the sidelines, and never causing any problems. In fact, you might not notice her if it weren’t for the way she quietly sidles up to you and gently puts her head under your hand for an easy pet. The children learn a lot by watching how she gets what she wants without being demanding.
Luna is the farm’s full sized donkey. she was abandoned at a local big box store parking lot in an urban area. At the time of her rescue, she was pregnant and had a foal by her side. With the help of a “village” of volunteers, Luna’s young foal was adopted and a local rescue group provided veterinary care for the underfed mother-to-be. When her baby Little Rock was born, she was unable to stand on her own and had to have all four legs splinted until she had the strength to hold herself up. With the love and determination of many volunteers, both mother and daughter survived and thrived. Although Little Rock found her home at another farm, their compelling story helps to engage the children who visit Luna at the farm and gives them hope for the future.
Walker is a seven-year-old Mammoth donkey who is truly a gentle giant. Imported from Europe by George Washington and others, most Mammoth donkeys are known for their good temperament and strong work ethic and were used as breeders early on. In 1920 there were an estimated 5 million Mammoth donkeys but are sadly now listed as an endangered breed, with Walker being one of about 2,000 worldwide. Walker came to Forget Me Not Farm in November of 2018 from a local ranch where she had contracted a disease called Equine Protozoal Myeloencephalitis (EPM) which affects the central nervous system, often resulting in ataxia, weakness, and muscle spasticity. Because of this, Walker was getting mistreated by the other donkeys, and needed somewhere where she could safely heal and thrive and FMNF was the perfect place for her. Walker is so calm, full of love and has ears that are so big and soft that remind us of a jack rabbit.
Sir Arthur of Joe Rodota Trail
Sir Arthur of Joe Rodota Trail is a mixed breed rooster that was abandoned in a homeless encampment in the early winter of 2020. His crowing caught the attention of a nearby neighbor who trapped him and brought him to Forget Me Not Farm so that he would be safe. Arthur is strikingly beautiful with iridescent feathers and a wonderful personality. He spends his days as a “security guard” patrolling the fence line of the resident chickens but frequently will come visit us in the barn and around the farm.
Arthur enjoys crowing on top of his house, eating yummy greens and watching over his hens.
Our Hens: We have over 30 hens that have been rescued from factory farms, wildfires, bank parking lots and more. When they reach Forget Me Not Farm some are touching ground and scratching for food for the very first time. At FMNF they are allowed to live their lives in a natural environment away from hormones and artificial lights used to force egg laying. Seeing the physical transformation for these girls is so rewarding and gives our youth hope that healing is possible. The chickens are very popular at the farm with visitors and are always munching on excess fruits and veggies grown on the same property.
Gathering eggs and holding the chickens are also some of the favorite activities of program participants.
Bruce is a one-and-a-half-year-old steer that traveled from Nevada to live at Forget Me Not Farm. He is a Dutch Belted breed who had never been around children before coming to the farm. FMNF has always had a steer in the program, and after the sad passing of our beloved steer Raymond, we were looking for a size that would be more manageable to care for. The owner of Bruce reached out to us and we fundraised money to be specifically used for bringing Bruce and another steer Boss, together and to our farm. Bruce arrived in May 2020, and we began the process of socializing him, which is slow since the number of at-risk youth we serve is low during the pandemic. Bruce has come a long way, and is starting to approach people in the pasture, and receive pets. Bruce loves his partner Boss, and the two are inseparable. Bruce also loves interacting with the different farm species, especially Maverick the goat, and they are often head-butting and playing together.
Boss is a Zebu miniature steer, who came to us the same day as Bruce in the spring of 2020. Boss lived on a local farm where he had previously been at a Montessori preschool, and around children, which made him an excellent candidate for our program. Boss came to us as a one-year-old. The Zebu breed is distinguished by a fatty hump at the base of his neck, and is originally from the jungles of South Asia.
Boss and Bruce have become fast friends, and are often referred to as the “Springsteen boys”.
Ernie, Zippy and Zelda
Ernie, Zippy and Zelda are a small flock of ducks that we acquired in 2010 from a woman who was concerned that her advanced age was impacting her ability to properly care for them. Ernie and his girls roam the property and are often seen greeting the children and new visitors as they approach the barn.
Xena, Xara, and Xander
Xena, Xara, Xander are three ducks that came to Forget Me Not Farm in the spring of 2020 during the COVID-19 pandemic shelter in place order. The ducks had been incubated in a high school biology classroom for a project on life cycles, and after successfully hatching they were meant to be classroom pets. However, since the schools had shut down, there was no one willing to care for the ducks long term...they needed a forever home. We were contacted by one of the students who was a volunteer at Forget Me Not Farm and agreed to take the baby ducks until they were old enough to rehome. Like so many of our rescues we could not part with these little darlings and soon they joined Ernie, Zippy and Zelda and our flock doubled in size overnight.
Each of the animals that we meet on the farm hold a special place in our hearts and when they pass away, their memory lives on. We wanted to dedicate this section to those animals who are gone, but will never be forgotten.