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Natural Awakenings South Jersey

Community Spotlight: The Magic of Funny Farm Rescue & Sanctuary

The Funny Farm Rescue & Sanctuary, in Mays Landing, New Jersey, is known as a “magical place.”

What makes the Funny Farm Rescue & Sanctuary different from nearly all other animal rescues?  Nearly everyone who comes to the farm from all walks of life describe it as “magical.” It’s how you feel when you arrive, what you see when you're there, and how you feel when you leave. It changes you.  

Beautiful animals that once were injured or abandoned or neglected now have an incredible place where they can call home and be truly happy and have a true sense of belonging, more than 550 of them. Somehow they know that they once had little to no hope and no one to love them or care for them, but not anymore.   

Nearly every animal that came to the Funny Farm Rescue came from bleak and dire situations. Now they live a happy life where they mingle with other animals that were rescued just like them. They have something in common.  

Where the magic come from, the happiness of the animals so happy, the extent of the effect the farm has on visitors, and why people remember this place for years to come are products of its operations and mission.  

In a world of uncertainty, the Funny Farm Rescue is an oasis from the world around it. Animals don’t sit with sad faces behind cages with glass walls or a large ditch that separates them from humans. When you drive in, many animals roam free and come up to greet you! They are truly excited to see you and some will jump up into your car before you can undo your seat belts. It’s all okay. The laughter coming from your car and from the back is reminiscent of road trips you took with your family as a kid. The giggles don’t stop.

You look back and there’s a goat in your car named Cowboy or a beautiful sweet dog named Farley. There may even be a cat sitting on your lap before you can step out of your van. When you finally do, you might feel a donkey named E’yore nudging you for a hug. You will see turkeys playing fetch with the dogs. You will see Socks, a beautiful white horse, that comes over to welcome you. You’ll see geese walking around in groups on their way to see you. You’ll see Debbie De Goose telling you story after story non-stop. You’ll see Hollywood the baby goat telling you to hurry up and come see his big brother Chucky. Everyone is so happy.   

What you will not see is a broken wing, a hobble or a raspy voice. What you will feel is indescribable. This is the magic. It’s like a Christmas miracle that happens every single day at the Funny Farm Rescue & Sanctuary.  

That magic stems from the heart of a single woman who imagined how life should be for hurt, neglected and unwanted animals and passed that idea on to her daughter, Laurie Zaleski, the founder and president of the Funny Farm Rescue & Sanctuary. At her farm, there is no rich or poor, old or young, or black or white, there’s just a place where people can just be people and animals can love them unconditionally for providing a place for them to be happy, healthy and free.  

You can even take the Funny Farm Rescue home with you in a new children’s book just released entitled Farley the Funny Farm Dog which is available on its website just in  time for the holidays.

The Funny Farm Rescue & Sanctuary is a 501(c)(3) charity and is open every Sunday and Tuesday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. free of admission so all people can come, feel and experience such an amazing place where everyone just seems to belong, laughter is everywhere and the animals are enjoying the best lives they could have ever have imagined.  

Funny Farm Rescue is located at 6908 Railroad Blvd. in Mays Landing. For more information, to volunteer or donate, visit or like them on Facebook at Funny Farm Rescue.

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