Updated: May 12, 2022
Milo, our most recent rescue and arguably the cutest baby goat ever continues to thrive. And he proved (almost) everyone wrong. When we first rescued Milo, he had NEVER stood on his own feet. The costly CT scan and MRI painted a grim picture. And the advice from multiple veterinarians was to give him a peaceful passing.
But we didn’t give up on him. Why? Plain and simple: he was happy and full of life.
How do we know when it’s the right time to say goodbye? That process involves measuring each individual animal’s quality of life. Our caregiving staff monitor for things like a resident’s comfort and attitude. Are they able to be with their friends and social group? Do they still get joy?
Anyone who has faced this decision for their furry companions knows that this is not an easy assessment. It’s complicated. For some of our residents, it is obvious to everyone who knows them that their time is here. But, sometimes, it’s not that simple.
At the sanctuary, we listen to the advice of the professionals we work alongside, and we also have an internal process that helps us work through making sure we make the right decision for each animal in our care. We always respect the opinions of our veterinarians, even if we disagree with their recommendations.
Our medical team monitors the diagnosis of a resident, pain levels, reactions to medicine and treatment, and the medical history of each resident. We assess the resident’s quality of life uniquely and compare it to the thousands of animals we have cared for over the years.
And thankfully, no one person bears the burden alone. Our team comes together every Friday morning and discusses any resident raising concerns.
In the case of little Milo, the decision to give him more time was pretty apparent despite the veterinary advice. He came home from the hospital enjoying his bottles, loving cuddles, and expressing a generally happy attitude. So we decided to place him in hospice care here at the sanctuary as a team. Which means we were closely monitoring his condition for any signs of pain or discomfort.
Every morning, we start by taking his temperature, heart rate, and respiratory rate. And we spoiled him rotten. He was allowed to have anything he wanted, and for him, this was nourishing bottles of milk and cuddles. We were going to make sure that he enjoyed doing what baby goats typically enjoy… and once it was clear that he wasn’t, we knew it would be time to say goodbye.
Luckily for us, we've had these procedures in place a long time because Milo, the miracle baby, decided to get up and start living his best life! Of course, we still monitor him closely because his future is unknown, but we have hope that he will continue to grow and experience the joy we want for all our residents.
Thank you for reading! We love hearing your stories. 🥰