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Animal sanctuary in New Brunswick provides safe haven for farm animals


Jamie Sabot spent years working for the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) while living in Ontario before something changed in 2019.

Part of her job was finding new homes for misplaced animals, including farm animals which she admits can prove to be rather difficult for a number of reasons. It was through that work Sabot first learned about farm sanctuaries.

“While I was trying to place animals I started talking to more and more farm sanctuaries and they were always full,” Sabot recalls. “They said if you are passionate about this work this is what we need, we need more.”

With already quite a few of these safe havens in Ontario, Sabot and her husband Tim Clancy picked up and moved to Codys, N.B., where they opened Lily’s Place Animal Sanctuary.

The space, located on a former golf course, is a forever home for farm animals in need. The farm friends may have been abandoned, neglected, abused, or a number of other factors that led to them arriving at Lily’s Place.

“Last year alone we were asked to take in over 150 animals,” says sanctuary co-founder and president Tim Clancy. “This year we are up to around 38 animals so far and we aren’t even through the first month of the year.”

Lily’s Place Animal Sanctuary co-founder Tim Clancy feeds a pair of goats staying on the farm. (Avery MacRae/CTV Atlantic)

Caring for the animals makes for long days. Both Sabot and Clancy have full time jobs on top of their volunteer work at the sanctuary, putting in a few hours both before and after their shifts to care for the animals. The farm also has over 60 volunteers who come by to assist with the chores.

“It’s easy as in we are passionate so it doesn’t feel like work,” Sabot admits. “But it’s challenging in that the information on the animals like the ones we have here being either older or disabled is fairly limited. We are asking our vets a lot of questions and a lot of times they go ‘I have to get back to you on that.’”

The farm currently has a number of sheep, goats, roosters, and other farm birds on site but Clancy says they have even had horses at one point or another.

The farm currently has a pair of residents who require some extra care in a pair of sheep.

“We have Nancy who has a prosthetic on her front leg,” points out Clancy. “And we have Rosie who wears braces on all four legs because she has mobility issues with all of her legs.”

Lamb “Rosie” needs prosthetics for all four of her legs after suffering frostbite at a young age. (Avery MacRae/CTV Atlantic)

Sabot says they take in every animal they can, given they have the space, proper vet care, and can accommodate their needs. For those they can’t take in for whatever the reason, Sabot says they use their network to try and find the help the animals deserve.

Lily’s Place is a registered not for profit organization. The money to care for the animals on site comes entirely through government grants and community donations. In 2023, vet bills and medication costs came to nearly $10,000 for the year, but for the first time ever the entirety of that cost was covered thanks to community donations.

“It feels like a dream,” beams Sabot. “When we started we thought, I mean it feels nobody cares about these animals but we are going to try and make a container where people can care about them, and people are just pouring into it.”

Seeing the growing success is a source of pride for the couple, especially for Tim who credits his wife for how far they have come.

“She’s a strong woman, she knows what she wants, she knows what she wants to do, and she’s compassionate and determined to help these animals,” says Clancy. “It’s something she introduced me to but I am just as passionate about it now.”

Those interested in volunteering, donating, or visiting the sanctuary can reach out to Lily’s Place through their website. Clancy reminds those who come out that the sanctuary is not like a petting zoo, noting the animals should not be fed by anyone except volunteers.

For more New Brunswick news visit our dedicated provincial page. Top Stories

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