Runaround Sue will never have to run away again

“Runaway sheep on the loose!” That was the news in a small Southeast Michigan town that summer of 2014. A sheep, complete with tags on each ear, and spray paint on her back, signifying she was destined for slaughter, broke loose from her owners’ back yard, and gave the “concerned citizens” quite a chase for over two weeks. We were eventually asked to help catch her. We agreed, but only if they surrendered her to SASHA Farm so she would never be someone’s dinner. On the early morning of June 21, 2014, SASHA Farm staff headed to the neighborhood to help catch this frightened sheep who had been tromping through everyone’s neighborhood. After a long morning and assistance from the neighborhood residents, she was caught and loaded into the SASHA Farm trailer.

Left, Runaround Sue checking out the dog barn after first arriving. Right, Sue spending her first night at SASHA in the cozy barn – first thing on the agenda tomorrow – ear tag removal!

Once at SASHA, she was understandably very leery of any person who came close to her. After all, she had been running for her life. She had no way of knowing that she was now safe and free. Our director Dorothy Davies appropriately named her Runaround Sue, after the “oldies” hit song of the same name! We removed her ear tags and the spray paint on her back which marked her for slaughter finally wore off. No longer “129”, she is now a “someone” with a name, living the good life with all the other SASHA sheep who have come from similar circumstances. She has found freedom and love with us at SASHA Farm.

Sue and some of her sheep and goat pals just chilling on a beautiful October day. She knows SASHA is her home forever.

In our Meet the Animals series, we have loved telling you about the many animal residents at SASHA Farm like Bhima and Daisy Belle who have responded to our loving care and seek out human companionship. But Runaround Sue is not a Bhima or Daisy Belle – she is a sweet docile sheep, and like many sheep, she is timid and shy around her human care givers and keeps her distance from us. However, she has bonded with many of the other shy sheep, like Chia, and we know she finds comfort and solace in her friendships. We humans often sing her song to her, though from a distance. We are certain she is wondering, “what’s up with the crazy humans?”

“Yeah, I should have known it from the very start – This girl will leave me with a broken heart – Now listen people what I’m telling you – A keep away from a Runaround Sue , yeah”

Daisy Belle and Sue enjoying the day and their freedom at SASHA Farm

We love Runaround Sue just the way she is, and we don’t try to change her into someone she was never meant to be. We are so grateful that she has found her place in the world – here at SASHA, safe forever.

Runaround Sue with her best friend Chia just peeking at the camera on the left

Moo’s Run for Freedom

There are different versions of Moo’s story, but as reported by the Associated Press in 2007, Moo was purchased by a farmer on Long Island to be raised for beef. He wasn’t there long when he made a break for it, first hiding in the farmer’s extensive vegetable farm and then starting his travels through 10 miles of backyards, swampland, roadways and beaches. He was only 600 pounds then, but sighted often as he stopped cars on the roads, munched on grass in backyards while people ate dinner inside, and was chased by police and a veterinarian for six weeks. He was finally captured on a crowded beach and returned to his owner who immediately tied him with a rope and made sure he had a dog and a horse for company. Moo didn’t seem ruffled by any of the fuss and showed no aggression towards his captors– he just knew he wanted to be free.

Moo wearing his winter coat

But the story didn’t end there. A compassionate citizen negotiated his release from his owner, and with the help of Farm Sanctuary, this gentle, docile steer, finally found his way to SASHA Farm. These days he enjoys the comfort of relaxing in the pasture, having plenty to eat, and hanging out with lots of other cows that he calls his friends. Moo is the “quiet leader” of the herd. He is one of the older cows, which means he is in charge a lot of the time. His name is very fitting, as he moos often, and loudly, to get our attention for snacks. Though he is still a little timid around humans, he gets along with everyone. He enjoys produce and is always one of the first to greet us at the trough.

Making a bed in the dandelions

Moo is a polled Hereford steer, brown and white, with no speckles on his white face. Being one of the SASHA “old timers”, he is pals with other escapees, notably Fargo and once Jefferson, until Jefferson’s passing in 2018. You will see pictures of his photo shoots with Fargo and Jefferson, but we understand he loves MacGregor (Highland steer) most. The Hereford is a British breed, and a certain number of them are born without horns, like Moo (hence “polled”). They are known to be docile, as is Moo, and are mostly slaughtered for their beef.

Jefferson on the left (RIP) and Moo looking at you!

Anyone who meets a Hereford falls in love with his or her sweet, innocent face and shy nature. We are so grateful that Moo made his way to SASHA – we’re pretty certain this is what he was dreaming of when he made his run for freedom. If your diet is not yet plant based, please, just look at his face. He wants to live, and he proved it. Make the change TODAY in Moo’s honor and in memory of all the “Moos” out there who haven’t been as fortunate. You can make a difference right now, and Moo will thank you forever.

Fargo (back), Moo (center), Norman the cow (front left)

We honor and love you, sweet Moo.

Sanctuary Sunday – September 20

Did you miss it? Never fear – you can revisit the goats and cows at SASHA Farm right now!

Comments and questions are still welcome. We’ll keep the previous videos up so you can enjoy the preparations too!

Ready to have a great weekend with SASHA Farm? Join us on Facebook Live at 2:00 Sunday September 20 for our fall virtual event. Our Animal Care Manager Shara tells us more about this very special visit in the video below – where you can vote on which animals you want us to focus on. Goats? Cows? Chickens, Turkeys, and all the birds? Sheep? Horses, mules and donkeys? Pigs? Potbellied Pigs? Just start the video below, click the little Facebook symbol in the lower right hand corner, and you will go to Facebook where you can vote in a comment. OR, simply email us at office@sashafarm.org.

And, watch the video below to see what the animals had to say about all of this!
Well, who is it going to be? Norman says there’s still time to vote so let your opinion be known soon!

Norman the mammoth donkey wants you to vote for HIM!