Former Colorado Beef Ranch Is Now A Thriving Animal Sanctuary

"We have never felt better or more healthy, both mentally and physically," says the couple who started the Surf and Turf Animal Sanctuary.

If you truly love animals, eschew the beef tartare and try out some veggie lentil loaf. This is what owners Jen and Tray Federici did, but with their entire business in Colorado.

Now, their Larkspur-based ranch is now a thriving animal sanctuary. Once a lucrative business that butchered and sold cows for profit, the Surf and Turf Animal Sanctuary is now a safe haven for a variety of species.

Both Jen and Try are lifelong animal lovers. They never really realized the disconnect of their passion and professions unit last year, however. After being unable to cope with the killing of an older cow they had selected from their herd, the couple decided change was needed.

Said Jen, “We officially had our last ham Christmas 2016. We never looked back after that. We swore off all meat as well as all animal products. Needless to say, we have never felt better or more healthy, both mentally and physically.”

In the summer of 2017, the duo transformed their 100-acre ranch into a 501(c)3 Nonprofit Animal Rescue and Sanctuary. VegNews reports that it is now a home to a variety of rescue animals, including longhorn cows, calves, pigs, goats, chickens, and zebras — among others.

“We choose to go forward in our lives not as consumers of animals but as ambassadors for them,” Jen Federici says. “No animal wants to die, just as no human does. Animals are amazing soulful creatures. We believe every animal deserves the life [they were] given.”

There is a multitude of reasons vegetarianism and veganism are on the rise. First of all, eating plant-based is better for the environment. Animal agriculture is to blame for 18 percent of greenhouse gas emissions — more than the combined exhaust from all transportation. Additionally, animal agriculture water consumption ranges from 34-76 trillion gallons annually; to produce 1 pound of beef, 2,500 gallons of water are needed.

Animal agriculture is also a direct contributor to world hunger. We presently grow enough food on Earth to feed 10 billion people but much of what is cultivated is fed to livestock. Finally, eating vegetarian/vegan is the ethical choice for those who say they love animals. We don’t eat our household pets, such as dogs and cats, so why do we unabashedly eat pigs, chickens, and cows? The last question is one the Federicis asked, which is why they own a pet sanctuary now instead of a cattle ranch.

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