Ellie Laks

Author of “My Gentle Barn,” &“Cow Hug Therapy”, Founder of The Gentle Barn

Ellie Laks is the Founder of The Gentle Barn Foundation, a national organization that rescues and rehabilitates unwanted animals and heals people with the same stories of abuse and neglect. She is an animal communicator, powerful speaker, celebrated animal welfare advocate, humane educator, and the author of “My Gentle Barn: Creating a sanctuary where animals heal and children learn to hope,” and “Cow Hug Therapy: How the animals at The Gentle Barn taught me about life, death, and everything in between.”

Ellie founded The Gentle Barn in 1999. She invented her own “Gentle Healing” method that allows old, sick, injured, and terrified animals to recover fully using a mixture of Western medicine, holistic healing modalities, holding therapy, and lots of love. Ellie is the creator of cow hug therapy and has hosted hundreds of thousands of people who have come to The Gentle Barn seeking hope.

Ellie has appeared on some of the most influential media outlets including The Ellen Show, People Magazine, Life Magazine, Animal Planet, The Huffington Post, Turning Point, Women’s World, The New York  Times, The Today Show, Good Morning America, and many more. 

Ellie is a TEDx speaker and keynote speaker who motivates her audiences toward higher awareness, profound compassion, realizing dreams, and an enhanced sense of purpose. 

 To date, Ellie has saved thousands of animals and hosted over 500,000 guests. The Gentle Barn is currently home to approximately 200 animals. The Gentle Barn has three locations in Los Angeles CA, Nashville, TN, and St Louis, MO. It is her goal to be the voice for animals, share their stories, and open the hearts of humanity toward all living beings, “Teaching people kindness and compassion to animals, each other, and our planet.” 




In the News

Good Morning America

How Hugging Cows Can Help With Mental Health

Read More

Almost 30 podcast 

Compassion Fatigue + Following Your Purpose 

Listen Now

The Atlantic

Feeling Hard 

Read More