The PrimRose Donkey Sanctuary

Donkey Tails Blog

Moon and Star and Ears Flattened

Posted by PrimRose on July 17, 2020 at 7:25 PM

What do people think when an equine flattens its ears? Most feel fear and that it is a warning of aggression. With bared teeth, swishing tail and aggressive body posture this could be the case. If one truly understands an equine it is often in jest, a playful warning with little aggression intended. In all cases in the 9 years I’ve volunteered with the donkeys flattened ears have been the latter reason. In this photo Moon and Star, who are best friends and always together, are both flattening their ears and it is at each other. The reason is both want to be first to get petted and scratched. Donkeys use their ears to communicate, listen and to show other feelings. Both ears flat to the sides means they’re resting. One ear forward and one back can mean they’re listening to sounds from both directions or they’re curious. Their ears also help to keep them cool. Donkeys can hear other’s braying up to 100 km away! Very handy in the desert where donkeys originated. Humans certainly can not hear other humans from that distance!! But then your ears are certainly lacking in size as compared to a donkey!


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