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Donkeys -Window to the Soul?

We are lucky in Sidmouth to have so many donkeys in the vacinity that you can go and visit for free and hopefully make a donation. There is something special about donkeys, and their playful nature.

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Anne V inactive
Donkeys are among the most special animals mentioned in the Bible; donkeys carried Jesus as an unborn child, as a helpless infant escaping to Egypt and finally, into Jerusalem for the Passover feast; it is said that is the reason why they have the dark marking of a cross on their back...

Are these two auditioning for the role on the Nativity play? ;)
Robin F inactive
Maybe Anne, especially this one.
The Dancing Donkey
You can't lie to a donkey - they know the truth and they love you anyway.
Anne V inactive
Aww, what's his/her story, Robin?  Looks like he/she could do with a cuddle...
Robin F inactive
The first donk with grass in his mouth is lovely Eyore, O'donko is wearing her Easter bonnet straw hat and the donkey in the straw under the heat lamp might be "Tinsel."
Sidmouth Seagull inactive

Nearly two years ago they had a Donkey called “William” (for the Royal Wedding) at Slade Farm (Donkey Sanctuary).  He was quite a crowd puller.

 When we went up to see him, he had been moved to a farm not open to the public, because he started to bite.  That was probably Woods Farm.

 We went up Sunday afternoon after our dummy run of the roads and most of the Donkeys were indoors – they had more sense than us! 

I was asking somebody who volunteers there do they know their names?  He thought not, but they see various people and associate that person with food etc. I prefer dogs to donkeys; because whatever day you have had they still think you are wonderful and I think they are (well most are).

Robin F inactive

That is interesting. My experience is that donkeys do seem to have the ability to know their "name" by the pitch and voice of people that they get to know, be it volunteers, grooms, old owners or the regular visitors. Certainly there is usually a food motive to this but just because a donkey can recognise their name does not mean they will always react and come over, and that is the privilege if a donkey makes the effort to come over to you without the suggestion of a polo mint or ginger nut biscuit.

The Dancing Donkey
Of course donkeys know their names!  Donkeys are intelligent - more intelligent than their relatives - horses.  They are as intelligent as dogs - but hugely misunderstood, misused, often neglected.  To suggest donkeys are only food-motivated reflects that misunderstanding.  (Incidently - mules are even more intelligent than donkeys.  Their thoughtful considerations about whether a situation could be risky or dangerous is often labelled as "stubborn".  Ummm... me thinks the mules and donkeys are laughing at people!)
Sidmouth Seagull inactive
If they have been rescued - quite a lot of donkeys don't have names.  They are seen as working animals.  Like cows in a field today.  This is what I have been told by a volunteer.
Sidmouth Seagull inactive
They have vacancies for volunteers at the moment - which a lot of people I know do.
Robin F inactive
My wife is a volunteer which she loves very much. It is true horses have the follow the herd mentality. If spooked a donkey would think does it really want to go over the cliff? I have never got on with horses but donkeys and mules are for me. I just love how donkeys will train a human at any opportunity given half a chance, you see it so often with human vending machines.
Robin F inactive
Mules are the more intelligent, with a donkey father for intelligence and training qualities from a  horse mother, they were used for carrying ammunition in the great war. The poor Hennies, however lovely, never had the breeding.
Sidmouth Seagull inactive
For Robin F

Coco

I went to take a photo and I thought she was going to eat the camera!
She seemed so pleased to be outside today......
Robin F inactive
Sidmouth Seagull, really lovely Slade Farm pics, it looks like Coco still has her fluffy baby coat and I see she is already "beating up" adopted mum Rose, they just don't seem to stand still long enough for the photos.
Anne V inactive
Beating up?  I thought she was giving her a kiss...   :o
Robin F inactive
A little game the children could play is spot the Christmas donkeys up at Trow Farm (visitors to the the sanctuary Slade Farm can cross the road to Trow) there is Mary & Joseph, Harry&Hazel Cattle, Holly, Tinsel, Chris Tingle to name a few.

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