Most New York commuters expect to encounter interesting characters on their morning commutes, but it’s not every day that a pair of goats is spotted cruising along subway tracks. Reiman and Taylor were discovered Monday, August 20, along Brooklyn’s N train tracks between the Fort Hamilton Parkway and 8th Avenue stops on the N line in Brooklyn.
Two very baaaaad boys. pic.twitter.com/3fcb9QCxGh
— NYCT Subway (@NYCTSubway)
News spread quickly with plenty of punny headlines about a baa-ad day for bridge and tunneling. But few outlets recognized just how terrifying the ordeal must have been, how much danger these goats faced (until the MTA wisely switched off the power), or what horrors these intelligent, sensitive animals possibly escaped.
Southbound N trains are running on the D line from 36 St to Coney Island Stillwell Av while the NYPD safely retrieve goats from the tracks. pic.twitter.com/oDy0KVk6PL
— NYCT Subway (@NYCTSubway)
While a surprise for many New Yorkers, this was not the first time we at Farm Sanctuary have encountered farm animals wandering or fleeing through city streets. As soon as we heard, our rescue team leaped into action with our friends in New Jersey, Farm Sanctuary Board Member Tracey Stewart and her husband Jon, who have supported us on numerous New York City rescue endeavors. Along with Farm Sanctuary staff, they loaded the goats onto a trailer and transported them upstate from first-responders Animal Care Centers of NYC (ACC), to Cornell University Nemo Farm Animal Hospital where they received a full medical evaluation before being integrated into our herd at Watkins Glen to live the Farm Sanctuary life.
Not surprisingly, these goats arrived at the hospital in rough shape. Both were severely congested — health testing later confirmed that Taylor, the black-and-white goat, who had a high fever, was suffering from an upper respiratory infection. Both goats also had portions of their ears cut off prior to their rescue. Reiman has a large round notch at the tip of the ear that looks like a punch-type cut. Taylor’s ear was sliced through one end — similar to what happened to Jordan, another presumed live-market escapee, who also came to Farm Sanctuary via the ACC.
Initially, our most pressing concern was analyzing the effects of the tranquilizers that police and animal control had used in capturing the goats; sadly, these drugs can be very hard on the kidneys and liver, and it’s possible to unintentionally overdose an animal while trying to subdue them. Fortunately, Reiman and Taylor avoided significant ill effects. Our vets conducted extensive bloodwork to monitor their response to the tranquilizers, as well as fecal exams, since many of the animals who come to us from New York City have horribly high parasite loads. Routine diagnostics were also performed to ensure that the pair did not have any diseases that could be spread to our other residents. Before long, they were ready to leave the hospital and begin their lives at our New York Shelter.
We are so grateful for our friends at the ACC, the Stewarts, and all of our members and supporters who make our lifesaving rescue, education, and advocacy work possible. We are so excited to get to know these two and are thankful that they’ll be forever valued as someone, not something.
Today, Reiman and Taylor are thriving at Farm Sanctuary as residents of our sheep barn, which is also home to a group of gentle goats. They’re beginning to come out of their shells and put the trauma of their pasts behind them. Among their favorite new hobbies: climbing into the hay feeder to enjoy the ultimate buffet! We’re excited to continue to get to know them as the unique individuals they are.
Please share their story to help spread the word that every farm animal is deserving of compassion and care. If you’re moved by their rescue, we also invite you to Gift Sanctuary with a one-time Farm Sanctuary donation in their honor. This makes a perfect gift for yourself or a compassionate loved one, and helps us give the gift of sanctuary to farm animals like Reiman and Taylor!