“You are entering a safe haven now. You never have to worry about not feeling safe, you don’t have to be afraid anymore.” This is what Tammy says to each of her animals when she brings them home to care for, take in under her wing, or welcome them to their forever home. What some people would call an obsession, this is a lifestyle for her and her family.
In 2004, after all six of Tammy and her husband Bill's kids had grown up and left the nest, they decided to move from the city to this forty-eight acre farm with no idea about what was about to happen in their lives. Bill now works in the emergency room at a medium security prison in Athens and Tammy now helps out at Arcadia Acres Nursing Home but was previously an aid at a school in Athens, OH for developmentally disabled children, so helping others is natural for them to do, but love doesn't pay bills for their rescues, actually these two, plus donations, are the only way these animals have what they need. Their first rescue was Charlotte the hog in 2004. Since 2004 they have gone out and helped with over 15 natural disasters with clean up, animal rehabilitation, and care giving. They have worked with both programs Noah's Wish and DART(Disaster Animal Response Team) with their clean ups and rescues.
Tammy would like to do more with her rescues though. She would like to build a fully heated and air conditioned barn for the sick, pregnant, injured or older animals. Also, she would like to be able to build a ramp throughout the farm for the kids she works with to be able to go through and see the animals without being too close to them to become scared and without going through the dirt making i hard for the kids.
On the farm now, they approximately have forty hogs, four goats, seven dogs, one guinea pig, nine cats, twenty-five roosters and chickens, and seven ducks and geese. For four months after hurricane Katrina they were still rescuing and rehabilitating the animals who also suffered the disaster along with the people and clean up. Everyday people contact Tammy and Bill to reach out for their help with rescues. Most of these are simply people who went with the teacup pig fad and realized they grow to be much bigger than what is expected and become too much for the owner, others are just dogs or animals that people can no longer care for or raise. For now, these animals are living off of Tammy and Bill's paycheck just like they are, with a donation here and there they are able to continue helping these animals from disaster to tradegy aiming for a healthy, happy animal.
For more information about the programs Tammy and Bill work with, click here.
Learn the Facts
The Hawgs N Dawgs farm is 48 acres.
About 60 bales of hay and straw are used every winter, costing about $5 each.
About 100lbs of hog feed is used per day.
Approximately, it costs $700 a month to feed everyone on the farm.
Tammy and Bill are part of Athens County Animals Disaster Response Team
One bag of chicken feed a month is used.
15lbs of cat food per month is used
About 50lbs of dog food is used per week.