In January 2015 the Sanctuary received a call from the public regarding three donkeys who had been abandoned illegally in county Louth. The weather was inclement and the donkeys had no feed or shelter so our Welfare team prioritized this case and removed the donkeys from this situation immediately. The Gardaí assisted with the relinquishment of the donkeys and were very helpful. The donkeys began their rehabilitation process in the comfort and warmth of the Sanctuary in Liscarroll.
After their initial examinations it was apparent that Eren was in foal so she was put on a nutritious feeding plan and was monitored closely by staff members. After months of anticipation and night checks Eren gave birth to a beautiful colt foal on July 12th at 8 am. He was big, brown and fluffy with long thin legs and big ears- he was perfect, or so we thought.
On closer examination the Veterinary surgeons discovered that he was completely blind. This was a devastating discovery as we did not know how he would cope with this. Thankfully his mother Eren was superb in the manner in which she cared for him and staff rallied to help him in every way possible. In his first couple of weeks he was lethargic and slept a lot while the other foals galloped gleefully around the fields, this was upsetting to see him so withdrawn but things soon changed.
As he got older he gained more energy and became very playful. This was a joy to see as he began interacting with the other foals and found his cheeky personality. We decided to call him Bocelli.
Time passed and Bocelli defied all odds as he gained weight and became very friendly and confident.
In accordance with our no breeding policy Bocelli was castrated in January by our expert Veterinary team. The procedure was carried out in our Veterinary hospital. The no breeding policy means that all male donkeys are castrated. We often rescue mares that are in foal and we are delighted to be able to offer these foals a lifetime of love and security.
You can come and visit Bocelli in our Open Farm in Liscarroll and see how well he copes with his impairment.