Farmers and zoo workers prepare its animals for chilling weather

ROANOKE,Va. – Farmers and zoo workers are caring for their animals in midst of below-freezing weather. 
Angels of Assisi,a low-cost shelter, not only takes in household pets, they take in livestock as well. 

Angels of Assisi sanctuary farm, called Harmony, is home to horses, rabbits, goats, pigs and other farm animals.

The director, Lisa O’Neill, says they started preparing for the bone-chilling weather six weeks ago and over the years have learned to adapt for each animal.

"What we do is we bring a lot of the animals in closer to the barn,” said O’Neill. “We move a lot of the goat shelters to the barn and have installed heat lamps for the animals.”

She says the most crucial items are its heating systems for all of the watering areas.

The farm is home to 200 animals and O'Neill says it is important to remember for farm animals to have shelter and clean, non-frozen water.

Mill Mountain Zoo is also weathering the harsh winter, but some of their animals, like the snow leopard, appear to be enjoying the cold temperatures. Bill Baker the co- director for the zoo, says it still is a great deal of work.

“We do have some sensitive animal species up here so we do add some heaters, radiant heat bulbs and heated systems,” said Baker. 

Angels of Assisi’s Harmony farm  sanctuary farm and Mill Mountain Zoo are both organizations that continue to operate year around.

They say that the communities help and support helps keep these animals warm and safe. Currently Mill Mountain Zoo has a GoFund me campaign to help keep them operational during the winter months. 

The zoo will be hosting its last Night Howl, which allows visitors a behind the scenes look at the zoo at night. To donate to Angels of Assisi or Harmony farm sanctuary follow this link.