Honoring the Animal Warriors

A close-up of an emu with a dog, pig, and horse inside a pasture with white capped mountains in the background

If it takes a village to raise a child, then it takes a tribe to save the animals. A tribe of warriors that are tirelessly and peacefully working to honor and elevate the lives of animals on this planet. A tribe that continues to spend their free time sitting at education and adoption events, (in the cold and rain if need be,) hoping that they save at least one animal or reach one person. A tribe that gives every dime they have even if it means cutting down on their needs, so the medical bills and feed bills can be paid. A tribe that freely gives their hearts to the animals in their care, even though they have been broken before. A tribe that rejoices in the success stories and sheds tears for the animals beyond their help. A tribe that is constantly disappointed by humans that discard animals like trash. A tribe that faces down the pain and heartbreak and becomes the voice for the animals.

Yes, there are thousands of people and organizations working to enhance animals’ lives in this country, but each year approximately 2.7 million animals are euthanized in American animal shelters. And this is just the shelter pets. What about the pets living on the streets or the wild animals forced to live a life of servitude for human enjoyment? Or the farm animals that experience torture? Can we really justify their pain with the belief that their only purpose is for human consumption, so how we treat them does not matter? This is why the warriors continue their work, giving their hearts, their time, and their money to honor the earths animals– praying there comes a day when their services are no longer needed.

I’ve decided it’s time to put the focus on these amazing groups so that other people can learn of their work and help support the mission of these rescues. Their dedication to these spiritual creatures needs to be spotlighted. And while I am unable to focus on all the groups that are doing good work for the animals, I have selected a few that I have personally been blessed to spend time around. Feel free to share the groups you are personally working with in the comments below.


Introducing: Windy’s Ranch & Rescue

Windy’s Ranch & Rescue has one mission, and that is to help animals any way they can. They are currently located on 10 acres of ranch land in Overton, Nevada. Windy’s is the creation of Janice M Ridondo. Janice grew up on a dairy farm in Massachusetts, down the street from a hog farm. She saw first-hand the suffering of farm animals. Her best friends were a pony and a German Shepherd dog, and they taught her about unconditional love. Her love of animals and the desire to help was the beginning of her mission to help animals.

Since 2009, Windy’s Ranch & Rescue has devoted its energy to passionately advocating for responsible pet ownership, especially Pot Bellied Pigs. Currently, pigs, dogs, horses and a few chickens, ducks, turkeys, cats, bunnies and even an emu, call Windy’s home. Many of the pigs were purchased by uninformed people and then dumped when it was clear they were not going to stay “mini” or “teacup” size.

“We’ve heard it all,” said Janice Ridondo, founder of Windy’s. “They stopped being fun. They are too noisy. They are too much work. I didn’t know they would get so big. We are moving. I lost my job. These are just some of the excuses we have heard when people dump their pigs. I invite everyone that is considering adding a pig to their life to call me and come visit the rescue. Let’s talk about their care and needs. Come find out how big they really get before you do anything,” she added.

Windy’s is not open to the public, but if you are interested in supporting Windy’s Ranch & Rescue, you can make a donation on their website at www.windys.org   For information about getting involved or volunteering, contact Janice via phone or email. Please keep in mind that Janice works a full time job, in addition to caring for the animals at the rescue. Also, there’s no staff at Windys – just Janice and a dedicated team of volunteers, so please understand if you have to leave a message.

Phone: 702-816-7711 (call or text)

Email: janice@windys.org

Animals have always, and will always, share my life. I know in my heart that animals are spiritual beings that have much to teach humans about love and compassion. They are a gift to us, and we need to learn to honor and respect their wisdom. As Janice says, “The tender and too short life of any animal is a true gift of pure love, one which humans need to learn to respect and treasure. We must stop breeding any animal until we can get the euthanasia under control. And for goodness sakes people, stop buying piglets.”

As an Animal Reiki practitioner, I’ve visited many different animal rescues, sanctuaries and even zoos looking for places to volunteer and support. I’ve seen happy, contented animals and I’ve seen sad, neglected animals. My first time working with the animals at Windy’s Ranch & Rescue, I knew I found a place I could support whole-heartedly. The animals are free to roam the fenced in pastures. They looked healthy and content. They run to greet me and always seem happy. And while I have no hard proof, I suspect that they like to act up when someone is considering adopting them, in hopes of being passed by and left to live out their life at Windy’s. And who could blame them.

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