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Rescue animals give warm welcome to critters evacuated by Okanagan wildfires

The Rescue Ranch in Kelowna has taken in numerous evacuated animals, including goats, emus, and ducks

Kelowna’s safe haven for rescue animals is now hosting a number of critters who were evacuated due to the Grouse Complex wildfire.

Rescue Ranch owner Rhonda Laturnus said she is incredibly proud of how her animals have opened up their hearts to welcome the displaced animals. Among the numerous animals that she has taken in as a result of evacuations are two emus, a llama, six goats, six ducks and 40 chickens.

She said her rescue goats have welcomed the six displaced newcomers into their herd.


Read about how some animals evacuated from their homes as a result of wildfires in the Central Okanagan have made new friends at Kelowna’s Rescue Ranch at To donate to the ranch visit

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“I am just so proud of them… It’s like they’ve been friends forever,” said Laturnus.

The new goats were fascinated by a baby rescue pig named Charlie and have been following the little guy as he snorts around the pasture.

“I wish everyone could have the opportunity to see how incredible the relationships between the animals can be.”

She said while they are being kind, her two rescue turkeys are thinking, “What the heck is going on?”

The two emus are kept in an enclosure with a high fence with the evacuated llama, who is from the same farm as them.

Laturnus said that the farm is full of animals and love. The rescue horses have been carefully stepping over the evacuated chickens as they scurry around and the Charlie the pig has been entertaining the goats.

“I am so thankful I am able to provide a place for them,” said Laturnus.

While taking care of animals in need is her passion, Laturnus said that it is expensive. She pays for all of the feed, bedding and medical care out of pocket and never turns away animals in need, despite the time energy and funds required to take care of them.

Rescue Ranch is a non-profit society and completely volunteer-based. Every donation is put directly back into providing care for the animals such as basic feed, bedding, veterinary expenses, medications, and shelter.

To donate, volunteer or become a sponsor visit

The Rescue Ranch hosts a fundraising event each year called the ‘Dirty Mutter.’ The obstacle course race for dogs and their owners, will be held on Sept. 17, at the ranch and is a guaranteed fun, and dirty, time.


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Jacqueline Gelineau

About the Author: Jacqueline Gelineau

I'm a reporter in the beginning stages of my career. I joined the team at Capital News in November 2021...
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