Narrated By: Carrington MacDuffie
Duration: 4 hours and 29 minutes
What to expect
What the Animals Taught Me is the story of how a woman came upon farm animals that needed rescuing and what she learned from them as they gradually changed her home in Sonoma County, California, into an animal sanctuary.
Wishing to escape the urban rat race, freelance writer and editor Stephanie Marohn moved to rural Northern California in 1993. In return for reduced rent, she fed and cared for two horses. Life was sweet.
Then more farm animals started to appear: a miniature white horse, a donkey, and sheep, followed by deer and other wildlife. Each needed sanctuary from abuse, physical injury, or neglect, and Marohn took them in, gradually turning her ten-acre spread into an animal sanctuary.
With each new arrival, Marohn had to learn how to care for it, to help it to overcome trauma, and to transition back to life with other animals—and to trust people again. With each successful rescue and rehabilitation, Marohn learned lessons not only about animal care but also about love, compassion, patience, trust, and so many of the qualities we often try to cultivate in ourselves.
She shares what she learned from the sheep she rescued from an animal collector and the abused donkey she helped nurse back to health. She also tells about the hilarious response from the guests at her Thanksgiving dinner when they saw wild turkeys come floating down "like paratroopers" to land next to the miniature horse that had walked right up to the patio window.
Marohn's delightful memoir illuminates how the animals have much to teach us and how they helped her to reconnect with the natural world and to see and embrace others as they truly are.
Memoirs, Wildlife: general interest, Wildlife: general interest, Complementary therapies, healing and health, Horses and ponies: general interest
Listen to a sample
“In this deeply insightful book, Stephanie Marohn explores, through each heartwarming story, the nature of our relationship with animals and the often unintentional harm we may inflict on some of those we believe we love. What the Animals Taught Me leads to important questions. How well do we communicate with animals in our care? How do we react when we see someone abusing a dog or a donkey? Marohn shares with us some of the profound lessons that she has learned from the many animals she has rescued.”
“With animals both wild (a doe and her fawns and wild turkeys) and domestic (former battery hens, more sheep, and two new donkeys), [Marohn] realized that her sanctuary was not only for the animals but for herself.”
“A quick read for New Age animal lovers who enjoy rescue stories served with a side of spirituality, this is an endearing look into what can be gained by building relationships with the four-legged, the feathered, and the fleeced and how animals can teach us to live kinder, fuller lives.”
“I have deep respect and admiration for Stephanie Marohn’s understanding and reverence for the human-animal bond, but, after reading this spellbinding book about unconditional love and animal messengers, I perceive her far greater gift. Stephanie not only reveres animals who cross her path as her true teachers, but she has the gift of weaving their beautiful stories in such a fashion that one can truly relive the experience with her and feel honored to have been a recipient of the gifts of learning and healing from these wise sages. This is indeed a truly special literary collection.”
“What the Animals Taught Me recounts Marohn’s inspirational personal journey. An illuminating account of her touching experiences with rescued animals, it describes the animals’ deep inner lives and demonstrates how the connections we make with fellow animals can inspire and teach us about ourselves.”
“In the face of ever-more-distressing news about the plights of animals and our treatment of them and each other, Stephanie Marohn’s tender insights into the animals she loves, herself, and fellow humans provide a promising antidote.”
“What the Animals Taught Me is a heartwarming book that deserves a wide readership. Stephanie Marohn and her dedicated coworkers selflessly provide a safe haven for animals of all shapes and sizes—horses, deer, donkeys, sheep, chickens, and others—and has written inspiring stories about these amazing beings who owe their very lives to this amazing woman. I will never forget Pegasus the horse or a deer named Angel. Read their tales, weep with sadness and joy, and embrace the trust, loyalty, and love our furry and feathered friends offer to us.”
“What the Animals Taught Me encapsulates many of the lessons and insights of unconditional love that we can learn from our kindred spirits. Sharing her experiences through heart-awakening stories about rescued and abused animals, one is immersed in the essence of the human-animal bond. The wisdom shared will deepen your experience with your animal friends. May this book be of benefit to all beings!”
“Inspirational stories and lessons learned! Stephanie demonstrates her own special quality of research for medical intervention. She then adds a holistic approach to reach the desired outcome for her beloved animals. I love the way Stephanie finds the animal-human bond in all that she does as a healing space is created for herself and her four-legged charges.”
“One of the best books I have ever read on the way animals open our hearts and teach us unforgettable lessons about life. It is written with a heart-stopping purity and simplicity and can be read by anyone at any age with great joy.”