Location: 17314 McCourtney Rd. Grass Valley, Ca.
Hours: Tuesday- Saturday 10am- 4pm, closed Sunday & Monday
Description: Animal Place is a farm sanctuary that rescues animals that were going to be slaughtered or are rescued from other bad situations. The farm houses the animals so they can live out their natural lives happy and free. Animal Place promotes veganism as a means to end animal suffering, save the planet, and take care of your body. Being an avid vegan myself I really wanted to take my 7 year old daughter here to meet the animals up close and personal. I was hoping this would fully convert her as she is roughly 85% vegan now, lol. I am raising our baby vegan but it is hard for kids once they start eating meat and dairy to give it up completely- but she's getting there! Weeks before our trip my daughter started fundraising a donation jar to take with us to the farm to help the animals. Satya painted pictures of farm animals and sold them to her family to raise money for the farm. By the time we took in the donation jar she had raised close to $100 to give to the farm. They were very excited to get the donation and we were all very proud of her efforts. First stop on the tour was the museum of horror, they showed us the cages, crates, and stalls that factory farm animals have to endure for their lives until they are brutally murdered for our dinner plates. This was a sad stop but very informative and I was happy my daughter could see the cruelty up close and hear the sad stories of what the animals have to endure.But on to happier notes! After the museum we got to go see some happy live cows that were grazing in the grassy sunlit pastures. We got to pet Mortimer the cow who was a gentle giant. Next we walked by the sheep pasture. This one sheep was super friendly and stood by the fence while we petted it's soft head and even stood by for a sheep selfie. The goats moved in herds and one billy goat gruff in particular came over for pets. The pigs were so cute and big! They told us that pigs are not meant to be that big but that humans breed them to be overweight to get more poundage for their buck. So some of the pigs have a hard time walking and get knee problems. We gave the pigs lots of belly rubs. The funnest part was feeding Wilbur the 700 pound pig! He loves apples and sweet potatoes. It was incredible to see him stuffing down his diet. He was so huge compared to my baby! We then ventured in to the chicken/ turkey barn and fed them lots of grapes. Did you know mother hens talk to their baby chicks while they are in the egg, and the babies talk back? If the egg hatches while the momma hen is out looking for food the baby can find it's momma through voice recognition- so sweet! My oldest daughter got very solemn around the chickens- I think it was a case of guilty conscience. After the tour was over we sat and ate our vegan picnic on the shaded tables by the front of the farm. It was a great trip!
Highlights: I love animals, so getting to pet the animals was super exciting for me! My whole family loved petting and feeding Wilbur the pig. I loved the friendly sheep in particular too. I love animals so much I don't want to eat them!
Tips: Check their website for food you can bring to feed the animals. If you are planning on going you may want to stay overnight somewhere nearby. The drive is around 2.5-3 hours from the Bay Area. We stayed in Old Town Sacramento which is also a lot of fun for kids!