The Spirit of Healing
The Power of Possibility

Meet Our Animals

Our Role in Animal Rescue

Animal rescue is a mission that everyone at Rancho Milagro is passionate about and holds close to their hearts. The ranch has been a part of Judee Thompkins, our founder’s, family for many generations. This is where her children were raised, so the values of family nurturing animals have been woven into Rancho Milagro since long before it was a recovery center.

Every animal who calls Rancho Milagro home was rescued. Our animal program dedicates time and support to the surrounding animal shelters in the Inland Empire. Taking in a variety of animals ranging from cows, pigs, dogs, turkeys, turtles, and an emu, Rancho Milagro aims to accommodate every animal, no matter its beak size (we’re talking about you, Lucy). As long as we have the space and resources, an animal in need will not be turned away from our loving and nurturing facility.

In addition, Rancho Milagro has partnered with ARE Animal Rescue as a foster facility to further our animal rescue efforts. ARE is a 501c3 organization dedicated to saving dogs and cats, kittens, and puppies who are most at risk of being euthanized in local shelters. For more information on ARE, to make a donation, or to view adoptable pets, please see their website here.

We Help Our Animals Help You

Being a foster facility for dogs means that our clients have the opportunity to help raise, bottle-feed, and potty train a litter of puppies. If you are a resident of our facility, you could have the opportunity to pick a puppy to be responsible for or foster. Usually, when a resident fosters a puppy during their stay, they end up taking that puppy home with them when they graduate from our program.

Not only do we rescue animals, but we help raise and nurture them too. The animals that come to our facility help heal both us and our residents as well. Animal therapy is beneficial to recovery from substance abuse disorders by reducing stress, lowering anxiety, and providing a more positive outlook on the therapy experience. Having an animal present during treatment generally helps patients feel more comfortable and open once they have received unconditional love and acceptance from that animal. We have many dogs on the property that would be more than happy to join you during your sessions.

We also think there is a valuable connection between caring for animals and learning to care for yourself; we can teach you how to accomplish both here at Rancho Milagro Recovery. Providing a place where our patients can nurture—and be nurtured—is what helps them reach long-term recovery. Not only can animals reduce the inevitable anxieties that come from ceasing substance abuse, but they can help our residents build both responsibility and accountability. Sometimes, it can be easier to look after a cute animal than to look after yourself. Here, this is the bridge to taking better care of your own wellbeing.

In addition to our passion for animals, we find their presence on our ranch to be beneficial to the healing process for those recovering from drug or alcohol abuse. Our staff and clients are all a part of our animal rescue program. Whether it’s brushing our horses or bathing our pigs, we do all of the farmwork and encourage our residents to participate.

Animals Can Do What We Sometimes Can’t

Our dogs are always looking for pets from anyone and everyone, and their favorite place on our ranch is the couch. Most canine lovers are aware that dogs do not need to be trained to sense when someone is going through a hard time. Receiving comfort from an animal when they cannot even fathom what is going on in your life can be helpful in your recovery process. Sometimes words and advice cannot do what a warm dog in your lap can; other times, a funny joke cannot make us laugh like a pig nuzzling your leg will. We’re told by residents, visitors, and staff that there is something different and special about our facility. We believe it is the presence of our animals and the secluded location that allows our residents to be a part of a family whose mission is to save animals and people from situations that are harmful to their wellbeing.

We recognize that many people in our program have received a lot of hurt or disappointment from other humans in their lives. After losing trust in others, it can be difficult for them to open up to professionals about their stories and struggles. Because they lack judgment, animals can bring out positive emotions that our residents have begun to shelter and hide for fear of being hurt.

We pride ourselves on being a recovery center that provides a natural environment rather than a clinical one, even though our medical care is also highly regarded. Our mission toward rescuing animals is a mutually beneficial one where they learn from us, and we learn and heal through them. As long as there are animals to rescue and people to heal, Rancho Milagro will continue its mission toward providing sanctuary for both their two and four-legged friends.

If you or a loved one is suffering from a substance abuse disorder and found your hearts warmed by our adorable animals and our mission, we would love for you to reach out to us. Give us a call today at +1 (951) 526-4582 to explore your treatment options with Rancho Milagro Recovery.

Ellie and Dolley
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