It started a few years ago, in Australia, with two goats. They were "probably the most frightened goats I’d ever seen," recalled Pam Ahern, founder of Edgar's Mission, a rustic sanctuary that is home to 432 formerly homeless, abused, injured or abandoned animals. The goats "were climbing the barn walls to get away from us. It’s always the way with animals that come through here: we can treat their physical wounds, but psychological damage is much harder to fix.” Having heard of a reading program that treated anxiety in dogs, she decided to begin reading to the goats in a calm tone of voice while avoiding direct eye contact. After several weeks, the goats began initiating interactions with Ahern, and eventually, they settled into another property in Flinders. Ahern then put a call for reading volunteers on social media, and the reading program was born.

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