Fifteen goats and sheep call Sunrise Sanctuary home. With families that came together and some of our original crew, they are all loving and have their own unique personalities. When visiting Sunrise you will likely see them staying as a group and herding around the property.
Meet the Goats and Sheep
Asia, Mrs. Potts, Hawks, Frieda, KanJen
In 2021 there was a massive rescue effort of about 70 sheep in western Illinois after an original 12 sheep that had been rescued by a well meaning lady several years earlier were allowed to reproduce. The rescue that spanned several weeks and which was complicated by numerous pregnant ewes and births during the whole process. We received five sheep from this rescue, including one that was born near the end of the rescue and arrived with us at just 3 days old whom we named KanJen in honor of Kate and Stacy, who took on this tremendous undertaking and found these sheep their forever home. KanJen came with her mother Frieda. Also part of this rescue was Mrs. Potts and her son Hawkes who was just 4 weeks old when he came to Sunrise. And their attentive aunt Asia. Hawks, Mrs. Potts and Frieda are the most social, while KanJen and her aunt Asia are a bit more reserved.
Elle came to Sunrise in early 2022 from the Toledo area. Our friends from The Good Shepherd Animal Sanctuary saved her from such a dreadful life. Her previous owner was incarcerated in October 2021, leaving several animals on the dilapidated property to fend for themselves. They were left with inadequate food and shelter and to fend for themselves. Toledo Humane finally stepped in to rescue the abandoned animals, which allowed sanctuaries to step in and help. This precious girl was the last remaining sheep on the property, it's unknown what happened to the others. We named this girl Elle after her savior and founder of The Good Shepherd Animal Sanctuary. This sweet girl was unsocialized and timid, having been left alone for so long, but as we start approaching a year after her rescue she's bonding with both our other sheep and goats. She's even formed a bit of an attachment to our mini horse, Strawberry.
Jefferson came to Sunrise Sanctuary at the end of 2019 at 6 months old. He lived with a loving family and their 2 larger dogs. Jefferson got to be quite a little handful and they realized he needed more space where he could work off his young goat energy. Jefferson was a very active and sweet little man when he first arrived, always into something and you definitely did not want to sit your belongings down and leave them unattended. But as he has aged he has calmed down and spends much of his time with the older Sunrise crew.
Millie came to Sunrise with her best friend Clarice in 2009 as an owner surrender. Millie is one of our older residents from our original goat and sheep herd. She is a very sweet, loving girl, who is always ready for attention or a photo opp. You will usually find her with her friends Spot, Jefferson, and Panda.
Having come to Sunrise in 2006 Spot spent her younger years as the leader of our giant herd that would leap through the air while running around the Sanctuary at full speed during events and Open Barn Days. As the herd aged into their upper teens they moved on from this life, and Spot is the last remaining of the sheep from that time. Now at 18 years old, she spends her days with another member of the 'original' Sunrise residents, Millie the goat. She is wise and soulful and you can feel her loving nature every time you're around her
Zeus, Hera, Athena and Juno
At the beginning of 2022 many horrible events came to light at a New Jersey "animal sanctuary." Seventy-one severely abused and neglected animals were taken from the New Jersey property and their previous owner was arrested. Aside from the severely neglected animals, there were many dead animals on the property as well. They were locked in dark, dirty stalls for over a year without proper food or medical attention as Hera was pregnant and they were all malnourished, especially Zeus. Little Juno was born right after her rescue at Rancho Relaxo. Luckily, she has only known love. This little goat family was the last to be placed from the cruelty case, but mom (Hera), dad (Zeus), and daughters (Athena and Juno) now call Sunrise Sanctuary home.
Leon came to us in 2022 at 6 years old as an owner surrender. We were told he was partially feral, but Leon begs to differ. He is a total sweetheart that loves attention and treats. You cannot leave anything unattended around him. He loves jumping in our vehicles, climbing on hay stacks or charming the ladies. If he is not following one our volunteers for attention he can be found with one of his goat siblings.
Panda came to us in 2017 as a very young goat. As he grew he quickly became one of the leaders of our herd. He likes roughhousing with his brother Leon, or basking in the sun with Millie. He's even developed a bit of a crush on Athena. He's a little more timid than some of our other goats, but he warms up quickly and he's a sweet little guy and we love him dearly.