Welcome to the tale of Happy Tales Animal Sanctuary! You may know us by our previous name, Sun Qu Healing Animal Sanctuary. Our new name reflects our widening efforts to provide rehabilitation services to both animals and humans, and to expand our facilities. Here’s our story:
Happy Tales Animal Sanctuary began as a labor of love initiated by Nicole Chillemi, a licensed veterinary technologist with a passion for animals as teachers and healers, and Russell Lipensky, an intuitive bodyworker with a gift for healing. One of their rescues was Sun Qu, porcupine deluxe. In the early stages of the sanctuary, people left in awe of the porcupine who loved to be touched, and so the name was born! The animals have been brought to them by state and local rescue agencies because they were abandoned, abused, or unable to survive in the wild, as well as by private owners who wanted to find a place for their “pets” that were unsuitable as and should have never been pets.
After they noticed that people who had not met Sun Qu did not understand the name of the Sanctuary, they decided to change the name. They wanted something that was easy to remember, and that connected people with the happiness of the animals’ new lives, and the happiness the animals bring to others. Some of our animals can be returned to the wild. Those who cannot live independently remain at the sanctuary, where they are cared for throughout their natural lives. A number of our resident critters participate in therapy and educational outreach projects.
Our educational outreach program focuses on Conservation, Preservation, and Education. We want people to be aware of what is happening in the wild with these animals and their native habitats, and why it is important for us to work to preserve these habitats for humans, animals, and the world in general. It is particularly important for people to understand why certain animals do not make good pets. We strive to achieve the goal of no more abandoned wildlife, exotic, and farm animals!
Happy Tales now boasts a population of 60 animals. We take care of everything from hamsters to birds, from foxes to pigs, from horses to…a wallaby! Our fennec fox is a royal, dignified senior citizen, known as Riley. Our lemur is a sight to behold, and our coatimundi demonstrates both her independence and her tremendous fondness for raisins to anyone who meets her.
The Sanctuary’s mission extends to healing for humans as well. We provide bodywork, long distance healing, and energy work for individuals in need. We also have implemented a program for children (and adults), about which we are very excited. Called “Animal Theraplay”, we provide bodywork and therapy for children through interaction with our animals. Although this program was originally created with special needs children in mind, we have found that EVERYONE can benefit from it!
Join our circle of supporters! And always treat each other and the animals with whom we share the earth with kindness, understanding, and awe.