Things to Consider Before Starting a Farm Animal Sanctuary

If you have a passion for animals and animal welfare then you may have thought about starting a farm animal sanctuary. Creating a safe haven for animals that are known to be mistreated can be rewarding work that allows you to know that you are doing good in the world and playing an important role in animal welfare. There are a few things to keep in mind, though, so read on to find out more.

Do You Have the Skills & Experience?

First, you need to consider the skills that you need. Starting a farm animal sanctuary is all well and good, but if you do not know how to care for these animals then you will be doing them no favours. This is why it is important to learn how to look after the animals that you want to provide sanctuary for and to gain experience beforehand if possible, such as volunteering at a nearby sanctuary.

What Animals?

You also need to consider what animals you will provide a sanctuary for. You might want to help every animal that you can, but keep in mind that space can be an issue, particularly for much larger animals. If you do not have much space, you may be limited to smaller animals like chickens.

Land & Zoning Regulations

Following on from this, you will need secure suitable land for your sanctuary with enough space to look after the type and number of animals that you want to provide shelter for. You also need to investigate the local regulations that are in place operating a rescue and for owning different types of animals.


Starting an animal sanctuary involves a lot more than purchasing a large plot of land and letting rescued animals roam free. You will also need to provide housing and shelter for the animals, especially during the winter months. You will need the right housing and shelter for each type of animal, such as sheep housing that will provide protection from the elements for your sheep and coops with chicken wire for your chickens.

Time & Costs

Running an animal sanctuary is demanding work and you will need to be able to commit to looking after the animals 24/7. There are also financial implications to consider as you will need to register as a non-profit and find ways to raise funding for your sanctuary. Keep in mind that there are many start-up and ongoing costs, including food, insurance, licenses and vet bills.

As you can see, starting an animal sanctuary may not be the easiest operation to set up but it is also incredibly rewarding and important work. Hopefully, this post will prepare you for what you need to do in order to get your sanctuary up and running