Invisible Voices

a voice for the voiceless

Juniper: reslience and carrots

I wrote about Juniper about six months ago, and her incredible story of surviving 9 months of intense neglect.

Her story is sad and powerful, and her crooked legs make us all feel powerless, I think. She doesn’t have much interest in human interaction, which is understandable, and yet she’s not afraid of us either. So, if you have come armed with bribes, like carrots, you have a chance at some incredibly precious interaction. I captured a very short video of this last weekend.

You can see her sweet face, you can see how gentle she is when she takes the carrots, and you can see that she’s balancing on the tip-toes of her front hooves. That is, indeed, as straight as her legs will go. And you can see that she does not appear to feel any pain. It is what it is, and she’s got shelter, food, and water, as well as the company of some of the less rowdy goats, so she’s happy about life, all in all.

This resilience amazes me. And it’s the common story when it comes to abused and neglected animals who find their way to the sanctuary. That amazes me most of all.

They need so little from us, when all is said and done. Mostly they just need us to not hurt them.


7 responses to “Juniper: reslience and carrots

  1. Sorrow November 11, 2009 at 10:17 pm

    A little food, a place to sleep and a bit of love.
    makes life a garden.

  2. Deb November 12, 2009 at 7:50 pm

    If only everyone saw it that way! đŸ™‚

  3. Mary Martin November 15, 2009 at 1:34 pm

    Some people recently have wondered whether I should “euthanize” Charles (my lame greyhound). It’s as if only those who are perfect deserve to live, and those who aren’t perfect are necessarily miserable. Meanwhile, he has shelter, food and water, and if you’re paying attention he clearly experiences joy.

    Just like Juniper.

  4. Deb November 15, 2009 at 6:44 pm

    Mary, I’d be so pissed in your shoes if people made that kind of comment about Charles. I’d be on the look out for them to limp someday, or complain about an aching knee or shoulder, and then kindly ask them if they want to be euthanized.


    But the whole “not perfect” thing…when I was at the shelter adopting Tempest, they had to make sure to point out that she has a very kinked tail. Birth defect, apparently. They had to make sure I knew about it, and was okay with it, because she’d already been returned once for not being perfect…she was 13 weeks old! I was flabbergasted. People are ridiculous.

    It’s like that idiot huffington post author who doesn’t think we can be sure whether animals experience pain. Have to wonder what planet he’s on. Or from.

  5. kelly g. November 24, 2009 at 7:26 pm

    Oh, sweet Juniper! Such a bittersweet video. It’s painful to watch her wobbling like that, but it’s good to know that she’s not in any physical pain.

  6. Deb November 24, 2009 at 8:22 pm

    @kelly – she really amazes me. When I think about what she went through, and survived, it just puts everything into perspective. But yes, it is good to know that she’s not in pain. I think it bothers us more than it bothers her!

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