Charo Credits ABC’s “Celebrity Wife Swap” with Saving the Life of Her Beloved Calf

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Charo and Manolito Farm Sanctuary ABC Celebrity Wife Swap Critical Blast

LOS ANGELES – On the day of her appearance on ABC’s CELEBRITY WIFE SWAP, Charo (of LAUGH-IN and LOVE BOAT fame) is revealing that the show, in a roundabout way, saved the life of her beloved calf Manolito. The longtime vegetarian and animal advocate rescued the orphaned calf shortly before filming started with the intent of educating viewers about compassion for farm animals and the cruelty of bullfighting. Little did she know, for liability reasons, ABC has a strict "no pets" policy for celebrities who appear on the show.

After Manolito received an examination from visiting veterinarian Dr. Kerry Milliken, who also happens to treat Farm Sanctuary’s Acton, CA, shelter residents, Dr. Milliken suggested that Farm Sanctuary could provide Manolito with a comfortable permanent home, expert care, and the companionship of other cattle. Shortly thereafter Farm Sanctuary’s National Placement Coordinator Alicia Pell visited Charo at her Beverly Hills home and met the little calf. After reading the literature Alicia had brought and hearing about how Farm Sanctuary operates their shelters, Charo decided that coming to Farm Sanctuary would be the best thing for Manolito.

And it was even more beneficial for the young bovine than Charo had realized. As with all of Farm Sanctuary’s new residents, Manolito received an initial medical screening to assess his own health and to protect that of the other animals. Tests results revealed Manolito had a severe umbilical infection and bovine viral diarrhea virus (BVDV), a potentially fatal condition. After a touch-and-go period involving antibiotics, topical treatment, a bout of pneumonia, round-the-clock bottle feedings, and even a required period of quarantine, Manolito’s umbilicus infection cleared up and he was finally pronounced BVDV-free. Charo believes that if it wasn’t for ABC’s “no pets” policy, Manolito would not be alive today because she would have kept him at her house and he wouldn't have received the treatment he needed at Farm Sanctuary.

Charo has kept in close contact with Farm Sanctuary about her former adoptee and has brought her family to visit him several times. She has become fond of many other shelter residents as well and brings treats for the animals (and the staff) when she comes. Whenever she sees Manolito, she sings to him. At the sound of her voice, his ears perk up, and he runs to her at once. Though the “wife swap” was temporary, this lucky young bovine has a friend for life in Charo. You can read Manolito’s full story here.

This isn’t the first time Farm Sanctuary has encountered reality TV stars. After the Fox reality show “Utopia” was canceled earlier this year, the show’s three bovine stars, Betsy, Honey and Honey’s young daughter, came to live at their Acton, Calif. shelter.

To learn more about Farm Sanctuary, visit

Farm Sanctuary operates three shelters in New York and California that provide lifelong care for nearly 1,000 rescued farm animals, works to change laws to decrease abuse of farm animals, and promotes compassionate vegan living.