Help us to protect donkeys and mules
Panache the donkey lived a rather sad and lonely existence having being abandoned in a remote forest and then removed to an equine pound where his future hung in the balance. He was underweight and had the classical long, twisted hooves that indicated previous neglect. Thankfully The Donkey Sanctuary was able to secure the future of this young skewbald donkey that proved to have a very quiet, kind nature.
In our constant quest to rehome donkeys we must never lose sight of why we do it. Last week was a wonderful reminder of just how beneficial our Rehoming Scheme is to both our donkeys and our fantastic Guardians who dedicate themselves to the animals in their care. Jack and Jerry have had sarcoid trouble in the past and when we spotted the return of some growths on both donkeys we decided to transport them from their idyllic abode in the Dublin Mountains to the veterinary hospital for treatment.
We are saddened to hear about Moses passing away this week in Hannigan's farm, he has been a true favourite through the years. Moses came to The Donkey Sanctuary in June 2001 as a 14 year old gelding from a private home in Co Kilkenny, he had two permanent rope marks embedded on his neck indicating he was abused at some point in his life. His owner relinquished him to us as he felt he was dangerous to his cattle and to people.
I have been working at The Donkey Sanctuary for a long time, twenty years plus, mainly at Knockardbane Farm where it all started from a leaking caravan and a few staff.
I can honestly say there never has been one day the same, every day comes with something different- be it happy or sad stories and endings. I recently got the task at short notice to arrange to move two of our donkeys across the water to their new home.
Sound travels considerable distance in the still of a summer Sunday afternoon. Massey, Forde, Ruffles, Rory, Ted and Ryan are listening to the sounds of cheering and groans coming from the open window of a house as the various expressions of emotions reveal Ireland’s progress during the Olympics. But these six boys are quite content to be missing the action.
'"He's a lovely donkey'' is not a phrase one expects to hear at the vetting gate of the Royal Dublin Society during horse show week. A reply of ''he's an even lovelier mule'' raised a few eyebrows swiftly followed by a raft of mule/hinny related questions from the vets. This seems to set the tone for the rest of the day as myself and the mule maestro Eugene Butler displayed Sanctuary mules Bohea Lad and Kendon on a showery Sunday at the prestigious venue.