The PrimRose Donkey Sanctuary

In Memoriam

These Sanctuary residents will be forever remembered by Sheila, the Sanctuary volunteers and their many friends.

Earl and Jackson



t, images, and other content

Jonathon Cupcake

 Jonathon Cupcake Jonathon was a very sweet mini donkey who had taken on the duty of being Patsy, our blind donkey's, seeing eye guide donkey. He was in his mid forties which is quite an old age for a donkey. He had arrived at the sanctuary in 2009, and we were all very attached to him. Our stoic little big man Jonathon Cupcake passed away on May 15th, 2017 surrounded by Patsy and friends. 



Goliath passed away on May 5th, 2017. Goliath was 39 years of age and had been at the sanctuary for 15 years. He was a loyal guardian to sheep Helen, Nancy, Violet and June when first arriving at the sanctuary. 

Goliath had previously lived at a sheep farm, but when the sheep were sold at an auction, the nice lady decided, since he had been such a good pet for her grand-kids, that he deserved to be in a good place - which turned out to be PrimRose.

Goliath had previously lived at a sheep farm, but when the sheep were sold at an auction, the nice lady decided, since he had been such a good pet for her grand-kids, that he deserved to be in a good place - which turned out to be PrimRose.





 Sadly Takota the miniature horse has passed away from complications of colic. His mom Shema is still at our sanctuary and has adopted Gordon mule as her surrogate son. 

Stuart the hinny and pony Elli Rose


Christina Rose 


 Jed was with Sheila for 18 years, he was a hero having saved his friend Penelopig. Here is Jed's story, may he rest in peace. Years ago, SPCA workers raiding Jed's farm found him abandoned without adequate food, water or shelter. When they asked him to get into the trailer, Jed refused and walked around a metal shed. His rescuers were led to discover his friend, a pig. Thus, Jed became the first donkey to arrive at the Sanctuary with his own pig! Her name was Penelopig, and she lived out the remainder of her days without fear of knowing cold or hunger ever again, with her dear friend and rescuer. 


Due to multiple health problems Ben left us for donkey heaven on April 23rd 2015. He will be with his friends that have went before him. He was a gentle, loving donkey and will be missed by Sheila, the volunteers, and all of the other Primrose Donkey Sanctuary animals. Rest in peace Ben, you will be missed.

Many thanks to volunteer Wendy for this lovely tribute to Ben.!/



Lucy and Annabell

Lucy and Annabell were put to sleep on the same day, since they were such wonderful friends, it was decided that they should go together. Annabell had been ill and we were waiting for spring, Lucy at 50 years old had coliced a few times and our vet thought it was best for Lucy to go to donkey heaven as well.


Marna Gale of the Beach Metro Community News wrote this wonderful story about Annabelle and friends.



Justin Incredible

Justin passed away on Tuesday March 3rd 2105, at 14 years of age, with Sheila and volunteers at his side. He lived a very long and happy life at PrimRose Donkey Sanctuary. Justin was Sheila’s shadow, constant companion and protector. Justin was very well known and loved by volunteers and visitors alike.

A very happy dog that loved carrots and treats, Justin welcomed all new animals to the sanctuary. He had his own signature walk, he pranced! Since he was the Prince of PrimRose this made perfect sense.

He helped Sheila check on the animals, barn and fields making sure everything was as it should be. Justin had the volunteers trained to open gates and doors for him and to put his coat (and undershirt) on in the colder weather before going outside. He knew which volunteers routinely brought him treats and the sounds that their vehicles made. Justin could also tell if there was one little crumb of a treat left in someone’s pocket.

Justin had his own cats Boots and Brady that adored him and he accepted their whisker and head rubs under his chin. They also loved to curl up and sleep with Justin.

He will be reunited in heaven with the donkeys, mules, cats and pot-bellied pigs that have went before him.

Justin was one of a kind and will be truly missed by Sheila, volunteers, visitors, Boots, Brady and other animals at the sanctuary. Rest in peace buddy, we love you.





Peter had been rescued with another donkey Stuart (who has been adopted out with Sancho), mule Timothy and a very sweet pony (that was in very bad shape and had to be put to sleep). These lovely animals had been left to fend for themselves before being rescued. Peter is now with his friends in equine heaven.






Simon was sent on his journey in September 2014. Kelli the vet said he was in the last stages of liver failure. Simon will be happy and pain free with Jack and many others in donkey heaven.
It is so hard to let someone go when we all have contributed so much to his well being. Many thanks to all the volunteers that cared for and helped Simon while he was at our sanctuary and thanks to volunteer Wendy for this lovely The Many Faces of Simon picture.



Art had been found wandering along in the winter time. He was obese and suffered from frostbite. He had an 'Iroquois" style patch of very, very course bristles as you can see from the pic. We have no idea how old Art was.

Despite his grumpy disposition Art had many special friends who understood that his fear was the result of the abuse and neglect he has suffered.

A very sad day – he was a grump but he was Art and I will very much miss him!! – love Sheila"

Goodbye Art.

*Full name: Art (the fart) Blueberry Tart




Charles Bronson (the cat)

As much as we love our donkeys, other animals have also found 'sanctuary', a place to live out their lives completely spoiled by the volunteers.

Charles was our resident tough guy who had been through some hard times before his arrival. He had some serious health issues a while back and was taken home by Carol, who adored him and doted on him until he returned to good health and ...
the Sanctuary.

He was her great friend as he was also to so many.

Enjoy this beautiful photo of gorgeous Charles enjoying the sunshine.





In April 2013, we lost Russell, our big red mule. Who knew a mule could last to 50!! The decision was so very hard to make but with great support you get comfort.

A large mule from Oshawa, Russell was in his late 40's. Rescued by a neighbour in 2009 who noticed how emaciated he was, he was brought to us so thin, he had to wear two blankets in the winter. Careful attention to his nutritional needs had returned Russell to his proper weight and he was feeling good about himself.  He was gentle, gorgeous, sweet and affectionate.  Russell had a beautiful, mournful orca-cry and loved his trail rides with his favourite volunteer Chris.







April 2013 we lost JACK our old “busy body” donkey 49 yrs. old. He was such a fussy old man- always in your way – you could see the smile on his face when he blocked the aisle or a doorway. We respected Jack and his weird sense of humour. St. Peter just push him out of the way of the “Pearly” gates. He’ll move.







 Lorretta Young and two baby foals 

Our beloved girl was pregnant with twins at only 12 years old when she arrived in mid-April suffering from a lack of hoof care and perhaps the care she needed for a successful pregnancy.  Sadly, her two boys who were stillborn on May 6th.  She was unable to recover from this terrible ordeal and she was euthanized the following day.    

Just weeks before her death, two of Prim's favourite people had sought her out at a farm auction and helped her get settled in. With her beautiful and somewhat unusual colouring she is officially described as a 'spotted ass'.  Unfortunately, her hooves were overgrown; one had begun to twist, making walking difficult.  An urgent call was placed to our farrier who trimming her hooves, easing her discomfort.   

It was too late for the Sanctuary's vet and caregivers to overcome the neglect she and her babies had suffered.  As our hearts break, we take small comfort in knowing that she and her boys remain here forever in the last place she will remember; where she knew she was loved and wanted. 

Loretta's upon arrival; pregnant with twins and twisted, overgrown hooves





A difficult decision to euthanize Daisy (July 2012) as she was no longer enjoying life.  A petite girl about 37 years old, Daisy arrived last fall with her 18 year old daughter Jessie and their friend Oscar (see "Adoption Corner" for Oscar's story).  Mum and daughter both suffered serious heath problems.  Jessie was euthanized in the fall of 2011. We miss their gentle nature in spite of their pain and difficulty walking.




Helen arrived with her sister, Nancy who were an inseparable pair over many happy years.  Like Amos, they had been neglected and had to fend for themselves during the winter months before coming to PrimRose. Nancy passed on followed by Helen on September 23, 2011.  





On May 19th, 2010 Tabi moved on to the sanctuary in the sky. From the day he arrived, this mellow guy began to wrap that big head of his around our hearts, chasing the sanctuary ladies with measured steps and a shy demeanour.

Unfortunately, his strenuous past left incurable damage to his body, but that didn't stop Tabi from showing his quiet affection for his fellow donkeys and his human friends. Though a mammoth-sized gap is left in the spirit of the sanctuary we will always remember this beloved creature, who lived with dignity and compassion.



Amos was rescued from neglect and welcomed to the Sanctuary in 1998.  He worked in the woods on Manitoulin Island during the summer and was put out to fend for himself in winter without food or water, year after year. 

A gentle donkey, he took notice when fellow resident Pasty lost her sight.  Amos became her ‘seeing-eye donkey’ and faithful, constant companion for over 7 years.  He passed away on November 9, 2011 in his late forties after battling multiple health issues.  His strength and loyalty continues to inspire us.





O'Sullivan arrived at the Sanctuary in August 2010 and passed away on September 23, 2011 as he was unable to recover from severe neglect.  He did not receive the regular hoof trims he needed and this caused the bones in his legs to become misaligned.  Despite the best efforts O’Sullivan could not be healed. Our deepest thanks go to all of those who helped this big white cream puff.





Corey arrived at the Sanctuary as a young donkey and spent a few years here, becoming best friends with Sancho Panza.  They were adopted out to a nearby cattle farm to work as loyal protectors before later returning to the Sanctuary.

Corey had been diagnosed with Cushing's Syndrome (a pituitary gland disorder). He had a gorgeous, sable brown coat and chocolate colour cross on his back. Donkeys are known to be stoic and Corey was indeed. He passed away surrounded by his best friends including Sancho and Sheila on September 9, 2011.





Unfortunately, when she came to us, she was in such rough shape and so old that she just couldn't recover fully. She enjoyed lots of love and attention in her last months living at the sanctuary. We will all miss your beautiful face and friendly nature, Princess.

In keeping with her memory, we have just established a lovely Memorial Wall at the sanctuary. Plaques can now be purchased to mount on the wall with an inscription to remember your beloved lost pets forever. Please contact Sheila or ask a volunteer during your next visit for more details.






Elvira arrived at the sanctuary with Martha a horse. Martha was adopted out and there was no way of telling Elvira Martha was alive and well. Elvira died of grief missing her friend.



Upcoming Events

Sunday, Oct 15 at 1:00 PM - 4:00 PM
Thursday, Oct 19 at 1:00 PM - 4:00 PM
Sunday, Oct 22 at 1:00 PM - 4:00 PM
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