My name is Joar Berge - known on social media as the cow whisperer "Moustache Farmer". I grew up in a small village in the Odenwald. I spent most of my childhood on farms with animals. At that time I had goats, geese, chickens, ducks and even ostriches at home myself. But my very best friend at that time was a cow. Rexi.
Rexi was my "foster calf" (later cow) on one of the farms. We had a very close bond for years. Day in and day out we spent our free time together. We went for walks, spent time together in the pasture and later I rode her. I didn't know dressage back then. I just sat on her and the rest was intuitive for both of us as junior cow whisperers. Cuddling cows was already at the top of the agenda back then.
At some point she had to go, as is usual on a dairy farm. At that time I was still too small and had no way to rerscue her.
In my youth, my interests changed and when I was a bit older, I was drawn to the city. Back then to Mannheim (Germany). Then followed many years of urban lifestyle with a few stops like Cologne (Germany), Berlin and finally the Côte d'Azur in France.
As beautiful as this time was, the special connection to cows and nature never let me go. I always knew that one day I would have cows of my own.
This desire grew stronger and stronger, until at some point it was clear that it was time to start the journey back to my roots.
That's why I came back to my old home and rescued two young cattle - EMMA and DAGI.
This step has given my life a completely different direction. Since then I enjoy every day in nature and the time with the animals. I experience a very intense time that gives me many small moments of bliss. It starts when I change into the farmyard clothes and the smell of the stable hits me and continues with rediscovering smells, plants and animals that I had completely forgotten about, but which are still so familiar to me.
I am often asked if it is as beautiful as I imagined. No, it isn't. It is much more beautiful. The nature, the animals and the experiences impress me every day anew. All this teaches me patience, mindfulness and changes my perspective on so many things. Sometimes I am so overwhelmed by the impressions and experiences that I am completely overwhelmed.
The deep connection with my cow friends led me to a purely plant-based lifestyle (vegan). A natural process when you start to meet animals at eye level.
I am very happy that in 2020, together with friends, I had the opportunity to found the farm animal sanctuary "Lebenshof Odenwald e.V." as a non-profit association.
Here we offer some animals, who otherwise would not have been so lucky, a safe place to live without them having to provide a so-called "benefit" for it. The animals are cared for here and kept in a species-appropriate way according to all our possibilities.
In addition to EMMA and DAGI, several other cattle live on the sanctuary, as well as a few other animals, such as pigs, chickens, ponies, rabbits, dogs and deer, which bring with them a wide variety of stories and have found refuge here.
My personal mission has become to show the people out there what wonderful creatures the so-called farm animals are - individuals with distinct personalities, emotions and feelings.
In the meantime, a large community has formed in the social media, for which I am very grateful. In addition to real "cow friendships" around the world, I get a lot of inspiration - both professional and spiritual.
The most beautiful gift for me is to see how much joy the sharing of everyday animal life brings to people's hearts and naturally moves them to rethink.
On Instagram ("Moustache Farmer"), approx. 120,000 people follow our story and some celebrities, influencers and media have taken notice and support me in taking this mission to the world.
WDR - Menschen hautnah (ARD Mediathek):
Get Happy! Podcast mit Kathie Kleff (Antenne Bayern)
Mega TV (Greece)
"Man Goes Back To His Roots And Starts His Own Farm"
Power of Positivity:
MY CASTINGS MüNCHEN:
Guy Quits his Job To Open Up An Animal Sanctuary
(Anmerkung: Ich habe meinen Job als Teamleiter in einer Software-Firma nicht aufgegeben)