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The Donkey Sanctuary working in remote rural communities

Recently I travelled to a remote village down winding mountain lanes over an hour from any tarmac road - to attend a workshop for local veterinary students run by The Donkey Sanctuary Mexico staff. The only economic activity of significance in Santa Ana del Rio is the production of mezcal – a clear alcohol liquid distilled from locally-grown cactus in 15 licensed village pot-stills and involving hundreds of villagers and working equids in the process – at every stage from field to final product.

Mule turning millstone to extract liquid from cactus


Expectations – we all have values, standards, needs and dreams. These lead us to have expectations. The Donkey Sanctuary have expectations when it comes to placing our donkeys in guardian homes. Preparing to rehome two donkeys can for some people involve additional work which varies from basic adaptions to their property to additional construction depending on their existing facilities. The basics include a shed, an area of hardstanding (concrete, stone or other dry surface) a source of clean water and a paddock suitably fenced. An electric fence is also considered a wise investment.

Ruby and Superstar leave The Donkey Sanctuary

Transforming the lives of donkeys (and equines) in need

The Donkey Sanctuary recently collaborated with local equine charities ‘My Lovely Horse Rescue’ and ‘The Equine Rescue Network’ to find homes for no less than 8 equines, 2 of which were donkeys and one a yearling mule.

Following a request to rehome two donkeys and a mule, our Welfare Adviser arrived to find that the donkeys and mule were also company to a consignment of several ponies all equally facing an uncertain future and in need of a home.

Rehomed Cob My Lovely Horse Rescue Equine Welfare Network

Safe from the bush fire

I associate bush fires with places like Australia and they conjure images of kangaroos running from the flames.

Our work brings us into some of the remotes parts of Ireland and when the RTE news carries a headline “Firefighters make major progress over gorse fire” its implications for donkeys was not immediately obvious.

The fire was on a hillside commonage in Co Sligo and very extensive with approximately 4,000 acres affected by the fire.

Donkeys safe and sound

Please help donkeys in need like James

James was rescued by The Donkey Sanctuary after being abandoned and spending two years alone in a field with no adequate access to shelter or grazing. He was in very poor body condition with severely overgrown and twisted hooves. James like so many other donkeys have been neglected and abused and The Donkey Sanctuary has come to their rescue. The mission of the Sanctuary is to rescue, rehabilitate and re-home our donkeys by transforming their quality of life. Our vision is of a world where donkeys and mules live free from suffering, and their contribution to humanity is fully valued.

James receiving care from Donkey Sanctuary staff

What's in a name

And so I found myself attending a call to view a mare and foal in the remotest part of Connemara. It was clear from the outset that the foal was in considerable difficulty. It had an abnormal temperature and was also weak and unable to stand without assistance.

Laichin at time of rescue


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