Clarence, a three week old Angus Steer, was found on a cold, wet winter night in a ditch along the side of the road. A complete mystery, it is thought he had either been dumped or perhaps had fallen out of a transport truck. Three weeks is way too young for a little calf to be without his mother. Clarence was hungry, very weak and unable to stand on his own when animal control arrived. Regulations require he go to the auction yard for a mandatory hold period to allow for his owner to come forward and claim him. Instead, due to his critical condition, Clarence was immediately transported to a veterinary hospital. The veterinarian diagnosed Clarence with an umbilical abscess and peritonitis. He needed to be bottle fed daily and put on very strong antibiotics. Not sure who to call, the hospital reached out to Northwest Equine Stewardship Center (NWESC), a nearby horse rescue in the area, to ask them to take Clarence in.

Despite never having cared for a baby steer, NWESC welcomed Clarence into their rescue. A unique love story, this gentle animal went from a missing mother to several human mothers who loved and took care of him. These wonderful volunteers watched in pure joy as Clarence learned to “moo”. One volunteer in particular developed a special bond with Clarence and came to read Dr. Seuss stories to him while he rested. The Ian Somerhalder Foundation is proud to have given a grant to help NWESC care for Clarence.

Sadly, because his fragile heart was not strong enough to survive, Clarence was not able to have the long life both NWESC and ISF had hoped for him. Despite this tragic loss, Clarence is still very much a success story. In the words of NWESC, "Clarence changed the lives of countless people and hopefully made a huge impact in educating people that all animals have value, they all have feelings, they all need and deserve nurturing and love and in the end they all deserve to pass over the rainbow bridge surrounded by love."