Happy Hooves Farm Sanctuary

In 2012, my hubby (Ric) and I purchased an amazing property in the Perth Hills on 150 glorious acres of pasture and natural bushland.  The property is called “Kookaburra” and it is magical.. full of tranquil dams brimming with bird-life, majestic gums and imposing jarrahs, rolling pasture and leaf-strewn woodlands.  Rabbits have made a veritable “Watership Down” zone in amongst one of the Olive Tree groves, and kangaroos graze amongst the trees.  Native animal life is everywhere – the sense of peace is almost palpable on this earthly slice of paradise.  The property was set up for farming, with some dodgy stables, a cattle crush, and mostly rickety fencing dividing the paddocks.  A beautiful windmill pumps dam water up to the tank that goes on to fill various water troughs around the place.  This place was once a working farm no doubt… most likely raising cattle and sheep for the sale-yards – along with crops of hay from the hayfield.  When we first laid eyes on the farm, we immediately saw an alternative use for it … we had a vision of a beautiful sanctuary that raised and cared.. healed, loved and protected.  This was certainly going to be a farm with a difference.  We envisioned animals that were neglected, lost, hurt, bound for slaughter or plain unwanted… finding their way home to us, where they could realise a life that all living creatures wish for.  One of peace, and on it’s own terms, a free life – as free as it could be anyway.  That was and is our dream.. we see this place as a Farmed Animal Sanctuary.

It has been our passion to help needy animals since 2008, and during this time, we have helped quite a few farm and domestic animals.  One of our better known rescues is the much loved “Timmy The Lamb” from Facebook fame.  You can read his story on the link to his page – it’s well worth a read and has touched the hearts and minds of over 3000 fans so far, not only here in Australia but all over the world.  This story of one man’s fateful encounter with an orphaned lamb and the resulting rescue and loving bond that developed has been very popular, and has been a catalyst for enabling us to reach more people with our message of hope for farm animals just like this adorable little guy. Timmy – the courageous and heart-meltingly cute orphaned lamb – is only one of many animals who have a story to tell.  You can check out the tales of some more of our current rescues on this page, there are not many here at the moment but we will be uploading more resident profiles as soon as we can, so please bookmark our site or subscribe to updates if you would like to read more as we post them.

Our dream of establishing a sanctuary for the animals whom are most often overlooked due to their commodity status, is slowly but surely becoming a reality.  For now, the project is a relatively small and private one – but happily we are now hosting visits by appointment, and we have volunteer days set up for those who wish to help us care for the animals and the property they live on.  There is a link at the bottom of the page if you would like to find out more about volunteer opportunities or other ways to help us.

So for those of you who enjoy a happy ending, who love these gentle creatures and wish to see them live in a place of peace and safety – stay tuned and we hope to see you soon.  In the meantime… please follow this blog and from time to time, you may wish to share a few of our stories with your friends – to help us spread the idea of compassion and love for all animals.

With love from Maree – the Animal Actionist

Want to support our work?

You can help us achieve our rescue goals by contributing in a couple of different ways.  Choose your favourite method below (more will come in due course). All donations over $2 are tax deductible.

  • Make a donation via direct deposit to our charity account –

Animal Actionist Ltd
BSB: 086492
ACCT: 844718223

  • Purchase and send us items we need via our online WISHLIST.  This list will grow and change as our needs will.

CLICK to view Volunteer Opportunities - VolunteerSpot

* Animal Actionist Ltd (ABN: 55167547346) is a registered non-profit/charity with ACNC as of 21/1/14.  Happy Hooves Farm Sanctuary is an Animal Actionist Ltd initiative. 

Want to contact us or arrange a visit? Please send an email using this form:

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1 Response

  1. Vicki kersh

    Hi there
    I am wondering if you or anyone you know would be able to give my 5 year old pet pig, Brian, a home. He is very friendly and gets on with all animals.
    My partner has terminal metastic melanoma (lungs, liver, bowel, and brain). He went to say goodbyes to family in uk but he has had a massive brain bleed while there, and it’s doubtful that he will return here. I am now busy and heartbreakingly trying to rehome my beloved animals so I can sell the farm and go to him. I live in bullsbrook and just don’t trust anyone with a pig for obvious reasons???? If you are unable to help any pointers in the right direction would be amazing.
    Thank you so much

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Happy Hooves Farm Sanctuary

Happy Hooves Farm Sanctuary is a not-for-profit farm sanctuary located in Gidgegannup, Western Australia. It is set on 150 acres of generous pasture and beautiful native bushland. We rescue, rehabilitate, where possible rehome and provide sanctuary to farm animals in need. We currently provide a forever home with lots of love and care to over 200 rescued animals.

Where things all began

Happy Hooves Farm Sanctuary was founded by Maree and Ric Earnshaw in 2012 who saw a requirement in Western Australia to assist farmed animals in need. Already having rescued some sheep and goats, the right property was sourced and work began on building a hospital, shelters, improving fencing, new yards and a poultry enclosure.  Since the beginning a lot more infrastructure has been setup with “Pig Paradise” created in 2015 and further expanded in early 2018 to house our ever growing population of pigs.  Further to this addition, new shelters have been installed in the paddocks and planned for future development is a new hospital, additional improvements to Pig Paradise and a new rooster enclosure to be called “Cock Corner”.

Why do farmed animals need rescuing?

In Australia so called “production” animals are excluded from the protection of animal welfare legislation.  Sadly they are often forced to endure a life of total misery, be it in factory farms or utterly confined spaces; most of the time barely able to move. In addition to this, many are subjected to horrid acts of cruelty that for a domesticated animal such as a cat or dog would be illegal, and the perpetrators prosecuted. These animals live without sunshine, without freedom, without the ability to socialise, without hope. As the so called “higher being”, humans have decided that some animals are our ‘friends’ and other animals are simply ‘food’. What we need to understand, is that ALL animals have exactly the same capacity to feel pain, to suffer, to feel fear, to feel joy and the same desire to live a full life. We hope to show at our sanctuary, that it can be different, the world can change. Compassion and kindness makes a huge difference to every living creature.

Happy Hooves Farm Sanctuary…  “Where the good life begins.”

17 Responses

  1. Mazzy

    Dear Maree,
    This is the best news I have gotten all year! I truly, truly am so very happy that the work you are doing, taking care of these beautiful negelcted animals, and giving them peace, sanctuary, love and care is proving wonderful result with seeing Timmy and his incredible journey. I am so greatful for you and for people like you, who emotionally, spiritually and physically, mentally and financially are drained but continue to fight to save these beautiful animals from those who would do severe harm. Dear Maree, I don’t have much but you are welcome to contact me in case you need any form of assistance.

    1. animalactionist

      Dearest Mazzy, I have seen you on the Timmy page following his story and I am so grateful for your interest and support for our mission. You’re right, it can sometimes be draining to do what we do, you come up against a lot of opposition when you start to speak about the rights of farm animals. That and the daily chore list is long and the critters do not recognise public holidays or weekends so they don’t give me much time off. 😉 That said, gosh I wouldn’t have it any other way. The sheer joy these animals give is utterly fulfilling. With their constant antics and gentle presence – it is I who is blessed to share my life with them. That’s why we want to help more people to see farm animals through our eyes, to see that they have just as much capacity for love and suffering as the beloved cat and dog, and therefore, deserve the same level of respect and care. That they are worth so much more than just becoming products for our consumption.
      Love and gratitude to you Mazzy… please stay in touch. <3

  2. Caroline

    Congratulations! Wishing you speedy council approvals and much support for such a beautiful project.

  3. Mazzy

    Dear Maree,
    Thankyou for taking the time to reply to my post, I definately want to continue to follow the progress of Timmy and of all your other animals in the Sanctuary. I myself, am a great lover of all animals, as you can see, I use the picture in my profile of my baby, who unfortunately was also abused and is a rescue lady dog!!! I’m a strong advocate for the well being of animals and I assist as much as I can. You are an inspiration to us all, even those who dont understand animals as much, or even have them. With all my heart, I wish you all the best! Kisses and hugs for Timmy!!! xxooxx Keep in touch please!!

  4. ruthyb

    Dear maree
    It is wonderful to hear you have started a farm sanctuary in perth; this is my dream one day! I will cross my fingers and toes that you may be open for visits/volunteers within the next twelve months and look forward to hearing how it’s all going with your email updates. Very best wishes in what I’m sure will be the most rewarding experience

    1. animalactionist

      Thank you Ruth for your wonderful words of encouragement, and your interest in getting involved when we are ready. Thats great news!
      We are settling in nicely now and the animals have found their groove with routines and lay of the land. We have only got one paddock adequately fenced at this stage so what started as an exciting new paddock to them all, is now turning into old news and they gaze longingly at the taller grass and lupins on the other side of the fence. 🙂
      Good news is we are hoping to get the next paddock (this ones much bigger) fenced within next few weeks so they can run and munch and explore again.
      Once this is done we will be taking on about 11 – 15 more animals from a family in a desperate situation and can no longer care for them. And so in the blink of an eye, the sanctuary resident quota will almost double. Yikes! This will be an interesting challenge. ;).

  5. Amie leaf

    I just stumbled onto this page and will definitely subscribe to updates. My family lives a cruelty free lifestyle and i have been looking for a farm sanctuary to introduce my 3year old to beautiful farm animals. I wish u all the best and we’ll be there when you’re open to the public!

    1. animalactionist

      Thank you Amie! Great to hear you guys live cruelty free. We would love to meet you and your 3year old once we’re open – watch this space!

  6. Sue thompson

    Just stumbled on this page, and I will be subscribing ,awesome work, awesome people, you rock

      1. Sue thompson

        Are you still wanting help on weekends there maree?

      2. animalactionist

        Hi Sue, thanks for asking. We are ok at the moment thanks – but if we do need to organise a help day, can we email you? Please send an email to me via the “contact us” form and I will add your email to our volunteer list. Thanks so much for your interest in helping! xxx

  7. Louise

    Best of luck with your sanctuary, it sounds wonderful. I have been following the Freedom Hill sanctuary, (http://www.freedomhill.com.au/) located in the Adelaide hills, for a while and wondered if there was anything like it here in WA, so did some searching and found your page. I will be eagerly following your progress and hoping you will be open to the public soon – my kids & I would love to come & visit.

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