One Happy Poppy

WETM Special Reports

Watkins Glen, NY (WETM)- Poppy the calf is getting a leg up in life. After a livestock transportation accident, Poppy was left with severe injuries.

“It was a transport truck that was transporting veal calves to a slaughter plant, the driver had not secured the back of the trailer all the way and about fifteen calves fell out onto the freeway throughout three states,” explained Amy Gaetz, Senior Caregiver at the Farm Sanctuary.

Poppy’s hip and pelvis broke left her struggling to walk.

“Unfortunately, that means she can’t use that back left leg of hers so we have been doing a lot of stuff with here, a lot of physical therapy, we tried acupuncture, she went to Cornel and they tried a couple of different things to see if it would stimulate the muscles and the nerves, nothing really seemed to work so we fitted her with a brace,” Gaetz said.

Cornel has fitted her for a brace, and after a few adjustments, she will be able to use it full time.

But Poppy isn’t the only one farm sanctuary has brought in after a livestock transportation accident. Gaetz estimates that the Farm Sanctuary has taken in hundreds of animals that have been victims of Livestock Transportation accidents.

“So we’ve got quite a few cattle, we’ve had quite a few pigs, the largest number of animals would probably be the birds because there would be a lot of them at a time,” Gaetz said.

Gaetz says that finding out exactly how many accidents happen across the country is nearly impossible.

“There is no real record of specifically animal transport accidents, especially if it’s really minor, if it doesn’t make the headlines you don’t hear about it, but it happens, I mean I wouldn’t be surprised if it was a daily occurrence,” said Gaetz.

Another animal that she cares for that has been in an accident is Jay the Steer.

“The trailer had overturned and caught on fire and a bunch of the cattle was so severely burned they had to be euthanized on the scene, the rest of the were rounded up were put back into the system and were shipped off to slaughter,” said Gaetz. “He had pretty severe burns all over most of his body, he’s got scars on all of his left side, part of his ear.”

Accidents like these can be emotionally traumatizing for the animals.

“There are some that just never get over it, which is fine,” Gaetz said. “They don’t need too, they have their animal friends, so, we don’t need them to love us, we are just taking care of them.”

For now, Poppy waits patiently for her new leg

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