ARLINGTON, Wash. -- Ellen Felsenthal thought it would be a good opportunity for some barnyard public relations.
The goats at her New Moon Farm in Arlington like to eat Christmas trees.
"It gives them minty-fresh breath this time of year," she says.
The photography instructor at Everett Community College sent some pictures of the goats in action to KING5.com, which published a story. The pictures were so cute, they were picked up by the likes of MSNBC and NPR, and circulated around the world.
"It was all over the internet. It was in newspapers in Amsterdam, New York, Chicago. I got calls from all over the country," said Felsenthal.
"I was just hoping to maybe raise some money for the work we do rescuing goats here, and raise awareness of the issue," she said.
She raised awareness, alright, but instead of dropping off donations, people started dropping off goats. Since the story ran shortly after New Year's Day, 11 goats have been surrendered at her farm, and at least 13 more are on the way. That's 24 goats in two weeks for a rescue operation that normally sees about 100 in an entire year.
One of the goats that came in had a broken leg that hadn't been treated for many months.
"She was just dragging it around," says Felsenthal.
Yesterday a veterinarian amputated the leg. That will end up costing about $1,000.
"I'm kind of disappointed," said Felsenthal. "This is expensive and I'm a teacher. We may have to look for help from some outside organizations."
Felsenthal doubts she's seen the last of the influx.
"We'll just roll up our sleeves and put on our mud boots and do what we can," she said.
If you'd like to help the New Moon Farm goat rescue, go to www.newmoonfarm.org
Ellen Felsenthal reports that since this story aired on KING 5 News, she has received more than $1,000 in donations and five people have expressed interest in adopting goats.