A ‘gay’ bull has is almost safe from slaughter following a crowd funding campaign and a £5,000 donation from Simpsons co-creator and philanthropist Sam Simon.

The bull from County Mayo, Ireland, was being fattened up for the dinner table after he refused to impregnate any of the pretty lady cows in the field, and instead preferred the company of his male counterparts.

More than 250 individuals have donated to fund the bull’s transfer to a sanctuary where he’ll be able to live out his natural life ‘with peace and dignity’, although another £1,000 is still needed to seal the deal. It is not known whether he will be provided with privacy to pursue other males in his new field, or whether cum towels will be provided.

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), which, alongside Irish animal-protection group ARAN, helped organise the fundraising, hopes that those moved by Benjy’s plight will extend their empathy to the billions of other animals on farms who, like Benjy, are denied their most basic freedoms.

Benjy the bull‘PETA told me about Benjy, and I felt compelled to help,’ says Simon, a long-time vegan. ‘All animals have a dire destiny in the meat trade, but to kill this bull because he’s gay would’ve been a double tragedy. It thrills me to help PETA and ARAN make Benjy’s fate a sanctuary rather than a sandwich.’

Lack of interest in the opposite gender is not unusual in nature, despite certain religions believing so. Earlier this year, a male pair of penguins in a Kent zoo were given an egg of their own to hatch, with the keepers declaring the pair ‘the best parents’ the zoo’s ever had. Domestic rams are statistically among the mammals most likely to form gay relationships, with eight per cent of male sheep forming male-to-male bonds.

Male dolphins have also been known to pair up, with relationships lasting as long as 17 years, while marine biologists have spotted bisexual activity in the bottle nosed species.

Benjy was reported to be delighted with the prospect of not being someone’s Sunday lunch and his imminent move to the Hillside Animal Sanctuary in the UK, with a short and simple statement: ‘moo’. However, he declined to pose for photos, and so instead the main picture at the top of this story is posed by a ‘special friend’ of his.