The Tennessee branch of The Gentle Barn Animal Sanctuary, founded by Ellie Laks in 1999 in California, is now the forever home of three rescued pigs, Henry, Mr Noodles, and Mr Pickles, with a happy-ended story. Henry and his late brother Horton were found running down the street, emaciated, covered in ticks, and terrified. It took months for the sanctuary to gain their trust and get them healthy. Horton grew very fast and developed mobility issues, but Henry was there for him until he passed away. Henry went on to become the father figure of the pig herd at the sanctuary.

On 5th November 2022, a piglet named Mr Noodles was rescued after falling off a transport truck at just six weeks of age. He was brought to The Gentle Barn Tennessee where he quickly settled into his new life in the sanctuary. On 8th November, Mr Noodles met Henry for the first time after completing quarantine.

On 17th November, another piglet named Mr Pickles was rescued after also falling off a transport truck in a different state. He was brought to The Gentle Barn Tennessee where he instantly bonded with Mr. Noodles. The two piglets became inseparable and cuddled each other every chance they got. By 15th June 2023, both Mr Noodles and Mr Pickles had grown into happy and healthy pigs at The Gentle Barn Tennessee. They had found each other and a father figure in Henry after being rescued from a terrible fate. 

This heartwarming story of rescue and friendship shows the incredible work that The Gentle Barn Animal Sanctuary does to provide a safe and loving home for animals in need. They currently have three sanctuaries, one in Santa Clarita, California, another in Nashville, Tennessee, and a third in St Louis, Missouri. It is their goal to open Gentle Barns in every state so that “everyone in America can hug cows, cuddle turkeys, give pigs tummy rubs, and look into the eyes of these animals and know for certain that we are all the same, and deserving of the same rights, respects, and freedoms.” If you want to help them, you can donate to the sanctuary on this webpage

Jordi Casamitjana
“Originally from Catalonia, but resident in the UK for several decades, Jordi is a vegan zoologist and author, who has been involved in different aspects of animal protection for many years. In addition to scientific research, he has worked mostly as an undercover investigator, animal welfare consultant, and animal protection campaigner. He has been an ethical vegan since 2002, and in 2020 he secured the legal protection of all ethical vegans in Great Britain from discrimination in a landmark employment tribunal case that was discussed all over the world. He is also the author of the book, ‘Ethical Vegan: a personal and political journey to change the world’.