The PrimRose Donkey Sanctuary

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Donkey Neglect

Posted by PrimRose on November 15, 2017 at 7:25 AM Comments comments (2)

As with all animals in human care, regular upkeep is required to keep good health and, as donkeys can live to the age of 50 years , this a big commitment. One of the first signs of neglect is not getting the hooves trimmed. Like our fingernails the hooves continue to grow and can cause walking difficulties and lameness. The trimming should be done by a farrier who knows donkey hooves as the trimming is not the same as for a horse. Trimming needs to be done every 10-12 weeks.


As donkeys have very efficient digestive systems they should not be overfed as they can be prone to becoming overweight. Hay is all they need and the option to graze although even the grass in Ontario can be too rich for donkeys so consult a vet if in doubt. From eating food that is too rich donkeys can founder which is when the legs and hooves grow incorrectly. If a donkey’s gait seems slow, uneven or stilted this could be a sign of foundering.


Donkey’s teeth need to be examined regularly by a vet as they grow continuously and can get cavities. If a donkey favours one side of the mouth when eating it could indicate problems. Donkeys also need regular vaccinations so vet care should be consistent.


Vivian

This is Polly, when she first arrived at our sanctuary. Her hooves were in extremely terrible shape. She had her hooves trimmed and with lots of love and care felt better.


Donkey Coats and Coats for Donkeys

Posted by PrimRose on November 15, 2017 at 6:50 AM Comments comments (0)

Now that fall is here and winter just around the corner there are important things to remember about Donkey care. Donkeys were originally desert animals and their coats are not ideally suited for wet, windy fall and winter weather. Donkey coats are not waterproof and the hair is often longer then other equines and can therefore stay wet longer making for discomfort. The broad backs of some donkeys also hold water and can cause back rot. If you suspect back rot get veterinarian advice. The whorls described previously that mules, horses and hinnies have also help with water run off. Most donkeys do not have these. One way to help donkeys deal with inclement weather is to provide shelter. Although donkeys prefer to be outside then locked in a barn they must have access to shelter with three walls and a slanted roof allowing little draft. Facing south and the open side away from prevailing winds helps. Most donkeys will naturally seek shelter from the rain and cold winds.


At the sanctuary a few of the donkeys don coats in the winter. Most prefer not to as they can get itchy and it is more comfortable to leave the skin open to the air, but some elderly frail animals do wear coats.You don’t want to see a donkey shivering from cold which can cause illness. If an older animal does get a coat for the winter they should have a few hours of relief each week to allow their own coats to breathe. If your donkey needs a coat there are certain sizes best suited to donkeys, horse coats are not the right dimensions for donkeys. Coats also have different fasteners and straps so make sure these are attached properly or the donkey can trip. Many of the older donkeys at the sanctuary have their own stall or wander the barn at night while the stronger younger donkeys have access to one big stall and several shelters around the property. Here are 2 damp donkeys seeking shelter from the rain.


Vivian

Marble staying dry 

Jessie mini donkey staying dry


Wilson the Hinny and Whorls

Posted by PrimRose on November 8, 2017 at 7:30 AM Comments comments (0)

This is Wilson the hinny, he had a donkey for a mother and a horse for a father. All hinnies are born sterile. Wilson has a cantankerous personality which is why he and his pals, Austin and Gordon are kept separate from the donkeys. If Wilson mistakenly gets in with the donkeys he chases them and nips them. Sharing of food is also a problem. The horse traits in Wilson are very noticeable: he has a long horsy tail and his ears are too big for a horse and too small for a donkey. His mane is not as spiky as a donkey’s. Another interesting characteristic is the whorls or swirls in Wilson’s coat. This is a horse trait and some experts believe the more whorls there are the more difficult the animal can be to work with. The whorls also help rain water run off the coat. That came in real handy these past few days!


Vivian


Jack

Posted by PrimRose on October 30, 2017 at 7:10 AM Comments comments (0)

This is Jack also affectionately known as Jack, Jack the garbage cat. When he first came to the sanctuary he was a tomcat with quite a feisty personality. He was neutered, as all male animals are at the sanctuary, but kept the personality. He disagrees frequently with other cats and has notches in his ears to prove it. He can at times be quite friendly but you never know when you’ll get a swat with his claws, true barn cat personality. Jack also suffers from feline acne which causes hair loss and swelling in his chin. The exact cause is not known. Jack gets treated with colloidal silver. His favourite spot in the barn is in the kitchen area where this photo was taken. Jack gets quite grumpy when another cat takes this spot. He loves to sit purring while Sheila is making dinner for the donkeys.


Vivian


Jack

Posted by PrimRose on October 30, 2017 at 7:05 AM Comments comments (0)

This is Jack also affectionately known as Jack, Jack the garbage cat. When he first came to the sanctuary he was a tomcat with quite a feisty personality. He was neutered, as all male animals are at the sanctuary, but kept the personality. He disagrees frequently with other cats and has notches in his ears to prove it. He can at times be quite friendly but you never know when you’ll get a swat with his claws, true barn cat personality. Jack also suffers from feline acne which causes hair loss and swelling in his chin. The exact cause is not known. Jack gets treated with colloidal silver. His favourite spot in the barn is in the kitchen area where this photo was taken. Jack gets quite grumpy when another cat takes this spot. He loves to sit purring while Sheila is making dinner for the donkeys.


Vivian

Donkeys and Flies

Posted by PrimRose on October 22, 2017 at 7:50 AM Comments comments (0)

In the hot days of summer, despite the best efforts of the volunteers at mucking out, flies can be relentless. The mules and hinnies are tormented as well. Their tails are longer to sweep the flies away. Here are the donkeys grouped together trying to keep the flies at bay. Occasionally the flies will bite so severely on a donkey’s legs that it will draw blood. Swat is good remedy to apply to the legs. Fly strips are hung in the barn particularly in the kitchen/pharmacy area where food is prepared.


There are fly collars that can be purchased that are infused with repellent. These have limited affective ness as the repellent wears off but also it becomes a game to see who can pull off each other’s fly collars!There is a natural product called fly predator but this needs to be constantly added to the compost pile and is quite costly. The best remedy is to keep the donkeys and barn as clean as possible.


Vivian


Susie Q's story

Posted by PrimRose on October 12, 2017 at 7:35 AM Comments comments (0)

Susie Q came from an Alberta farm to the sanctuary with 3 siblings and their mother Charisma. They boarded here while their owner worked at setting up a farm in Ontario. Finally a farm was purchased in Nova Scotia. The vet said Charisma was too old to travel such a distance. It is hard work to balance in a trailer all that way. It was decided that Susie Q would stay to keep her mother company at the sanctuary. Susie Q has had some health issues such as her coat was quite patchy. Now it has filled in nicely and she looks well. Susie Q can be a bit cantankerous and pushy particularly if she wants to be scratched or groomed and another donkey gets in her way. She is a handsome girl who has found her forever home at the sanctuary. 


Vivian


Pictured below are Charisma with daughter Susie Q


World Animal Day

Posted by PrimRose on October 4, 2017 at 6:35 AM Comments comments (0)

On Sunday we celebrated World Animal Day at the sanctuary. This day is commemorated world wide to bring awareness to improving the lives of animals everywhere. The mission of this movement is to raise the status of animals in order to improve welfare standards around the globe. Building the celebration of World Animal Day unites the animal welfare movement, mobilizing it into a global force to make the world a better place for animals. It’s celebrated in different ways in different countries, irrespective of nationality, religion, faith or politicalideology. Through increased awareness and education we can create aworld where animals are always recognized as sentient beings and full regard is always paid to their welfare.

The mission at the sanctuary is no donkey will be turned away and there are over 40 rescued donkeys, mules and hinnies. There are also numerous cats, 3 pigs, 3 goats and a sheep.


The celebration Sunday here was a great success with many visitors learning about our animals and donating generously. Thank you to all.


Pictured below is our refreshement table. 


Vivian


Volunteers at PrimRose Donkey Sanctuary

Posted by PrimRose on September 28, 2017 at 7:50 AM Comments comments (0)

Volunteers are very important at the sanctuary and there are many ways to help out. There are about 40 members on the list and 20 who are very active. Activities include mucking out, grooming, helping with feeding and watering, and giving tours on Thursdays and Sundays. There are building opportunities too as the fences, shelters and barn always need repairs. The barn is often painted and the chandeliers dusted!


There are also special event days where there are specific tasks such as making tea and lemonade, giving tours or greeting visitors as they arrive. Some volunteers make greeting cards or paintings that are sold to raise money for the animals.


Visit the sanctuary on open to visitor days Thursdays and Sundays 1-4pm to meet Sheila and talk about volunteering or email Sheila at [email protected] 


Vivian

Sarah Rose and Lily

Posted by PrimRose on September 14, 2017 at 7:20 AM Comments comments (1)

This is a Sarah Rose (blue halter) and her daughter Lily. They're large standard donkeys. Sara Rose is 46 years old, the oldest donkey at the sanctuary. Lily is 5 years old and is a very friendly sweet girl. Lily loves being groomed and cranes her neck around and quivers her lips to show how much she's enjoying being brushed. She also has gone through some naughty periods where she would stand in the middle of an open gate so it could not be closed.


Having a foal at 41 is very old for a donkey to be reproducing. Jennets (female donkeys) never stop going into heat so it is up to their owners to prevent them from mating. Jennets also carry for 12 months, as anyone who has ever been pregnant knows, that sounds long! Sara Rose has few teeth left and needs a large bowl of mush (fit and fibre and water) for breakfast and dinner to get her nutrients. She loves being groomed like her daughter and would love to see visitors on Thursday and Sunday from 1-4pm.


Vivian



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