Sheep Kills Volunteer Alone in Pen on Therapy Farm

Kim Taylor, 73, was apparently rammed repeatedly
By Kate Seamons,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 8, 2021 11:35 AM CST
Sheep Kills Volunteer on Massachusetts Therapy Farm
Sheep attacks on humans are incredibly rare.   (Getty Images)

(Newser) – A "treasured volunteer" at a Massachusetts therapy farm for children was killed on Saturday by one of the animals kept at the farm. Kim Taylor, 73, was alone in a pen feeding animals at the Bolton farm when a sheep apparently repeatedly rammed into her; the New York Times reports no one witnessed the 8:30am incident. Taylor sustained serious injuries and went into cardiac arrest; she was pronounced dead at the hospital. Her daughters described her as a passionate animal lover and retired nurse of 30 years who "found joy in her weekly volunteering at Cultivate Care Farms," reports CBS Boston. "This accident was tragic and we are so very sad," the daughters said. She had been volunteering at the farm for 14 months.

WCVB cites the police chief as saying all animals who live on the farm are used as comfort animals. On its Facebook page, the farm describes itself as a pioneer in the "Farm-Based Therapy model" and says it "endeavors to establish Farm-Based Therapy as a recognized form of mental health treatment comparable to models such as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Dialectical Behavioral Therapy, etc." Animal control officials with the city will determine the fate of the sheep. The Times notes fatal sheep attacks on humans are incredibly rare. To wit, this 2020 study out of Australia found three deaths over 20 years involving sheep, but none were attacks: one was a shearing-related injury, one a road collision with a sheep, and the third a cardiac arrest that occurred during shearing. (Read about other animal attacks here.)

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