Over 150 goats are now free to frolic and live out their natural lives at “The Goat Conspiracy Sanctuary and Retirement Home,” in Bloomington, IN, after the four co-owners made the choice to transition from farmers to goat guardians.

The Goat Conspiracy was originally a dairy farm. The owners spent years attempting to create something more responsible than factory farming, but as time went on, they were struggling to justify what they were doing.

The brutal reality is that dairy can’t exist without death. The farmers were growing more and more troubled by how much they were contributing to the destruction of the environment and animal suffering.

“Animal agriculture (specifically meat and dairy) is one of the single greatest contributors to climate change,” the owners wrote in a Facebook post announcing their change of heart. “Additionally, in order to produce milk, goats need to get pregnant.”

Breeding goats for dairy results in the distressing separation of the mother and infant. Since male goats don’t produce milk, baby boys are frequently slaughtered. Mother goats are typically slaughtered once they “dry up” and are no longer profitable. Even small-scale farms can’t escape how much emotional and physical pain animals in dairy suffer.

Goats are intelligent animals who feel deeply and deserve better. Mother goats have been documented crying for their babies and a study has shown they do not forget the sound of their kids’ voices.

The four farmers eventually came to the conclusion that the only humane way forward was to transform the farm into something more compassionate.

“There was no way we were going to get rid of the goats,” Nicole Schoneman, one of the co-owners of the Sanctuary, said. “We decided a sanctuary was a good idea.”

The sweet goats at the sanctuary are now living the life they deserve and the goat guardians are now working to show people that goats aren’t very different from cats, dogs, and other companion animals. They also encourage people to choose plant-based foods instead of dairy or animal products.

Lady Freethinker believes that all farmed animals are individuals who deserve compassion. This transformation from farm to sanctuary is a sign of hope for a more compassionate future for animals and a healthier planet.

For another story about goats, read about the new study proving goats can recognize people’s tone of voice.