Our Little Long Ears
Meet our four little, loveable long ears - Rocket
Man, his mother Mullie and Nettie are miniature Mediterranean donkeys
(also known as Sicilian donkeys). Sage is a miniature Baudet du Poitou.
Rocket Man is,
as usual, in the middle front. That is his mother, Mullie,
walking in behind him. Rocket Man likes to play with milk
jugs and walk around with a bucket on his head. He is the
youngest and can be quite annoying when the others just want to
enjoy a little peace and quiet under the trees.
afraid of the camera so we do not have a good picture of her.
She starts walking away if she sees someone approaching with a
camera. Yes, that's her little bullet-butt at the left in
the picture above . She has the most beautiful brown eyes
and the kindest face any donkey ever had, although you maybe
never see it in a picture. She is willing and generous and
wants nothing more than to be loved. Well, maybe a lot of
hay and grass.
difference between a burro and a donkey? Nothing.
Burro is the Spanish word for donkey. Although, some
people call the wild ass a burro and a domesticated ass a
Mullie (black halter) is
loyal and intelligent. When she first arrived on our farm,
she wouldn't allow anyone to touch her. She had been
neglected before coming here and we suspect she might even have
been abused. It took months of quiet encouragement but she
came out of her shell, and how! Now she cannot get enough
of being brushed and scratched. She study you before
deciding if you are friend-worthy; if she decides you're ok,
she's your friend for life.
are they so fuzzy? In the wintertime, donkeys get a heavy
coat. Their foreheads and faces get bushy to the point
their eyes are almost covered. This picture was taken in
the late Spring when they still had about half of their winter
coats. By mid-summer they will be sleek and shiny and look
as if they had lost about 50 pounds. As they are shedding
out they look rather pathetic. Many people shave their
donkeys to avoid that 'ugly' stage; we don't, rather we groom
them because they enjoy the attention and it is our 'quality
time'. Some of our visitors who have seen the donkeys in
winter did not know they were the same animals when they came
back in the summertime.
This road isn't passable, not even jackassable. ---
Sage is a miniature Baudet
du Poitou donkey. Many people do not realize that, just
like horses, there are different breeds of donkeys. In the
wintertime she gets a long, curly coat of very soft hair.
It is a rich coconut color. If left ungroomed ,she will
eventually look as if she has dreadlocks!
is confident and kind. She loves to play
'follow-me-if-you-can', leading the others in an all-out run
from pasture to pasture and getting as close to things as she
can without running into them. Her next favorite game is
playing 'chicken'; she runs straight toward you at full speed
veering off to one side or the other at the last possible
second. It can be scary so don't play if you're chicken!
She is our resident pick pocket.
Although they are incredibly strong, Poitou donkeys were never used
as a work animal; they were almost exclusively used for breeding
mules. The Poitou jack was bred to a Trait Mulassier mare.
The Trait Mulassier is also a critically endangered species, as
of April 2010 there were only three in the USA! The French
have taken the lead in careful management and rebreeding efforts
and both are beginning to recover from near extinction.
American Livestock Breeds Conservancy
is a non-profit membership organization working to protect over
180 breeds of livestock and poultry from extinction.
Founded in 1977, the ALBC works to conserve historic breeds and
genetic diversity in livestock. As of October 2011, their
list shows the Poitou as "critical" and the Miniature Donkey as
Rocket Man Gets a Pedicure
farrier, Mike Blackburn, checks for any potential hoof problems
like white line or abscesses. Rocket enjoys having the
farrier work on his feet. However, he does not have the
same fondness for the equine dentist!
donkey is called a jenny. A male donkey is called a jack.
and her mother spent the weekend with us. The donkeys
enjoyed their visit! They have stayed with us before;
Rocket Man never forgets a friend.
Brittany Gets a Donkey Group Hug
probably the donkeys' (and our) favorite visitors!
You've heard the expression, 'an elephant never forgets'
- it is especially true of donkeys. They remember
kindnesses and mistreatments.
Donkeys and mules are smart, sensitive
and affectionate. They are sure-footed and
extremely strong for their size. They have long
been stereotyped as stubborn and difficult to control.
The key to working with these bright and inquisitive
animals is to understand them and how they differ in
many ways from horses.
There is no character,
howsoever good and fine, but it can be destroyed by
ridicule, howsoever poor and witless. Observe the
ass, for instance: his character is about perfect,
he is the choicest spirit among all the humbler animals,
yet see what ridicule has brought him to. Instead
of feeling complimented when we are called an ass, we
are left in doubt. –Mark Twain
Rocket Man Strikes a Pose
Rocket Man loves
the camera and, it's obvious, the camera loves him!
This picture was taken on a cold, windy day so it was a
good thing the donkeys already have their fuzzy winter
What a Cutie!
He certainly has
'cute' down to an art. Rocket Man was born May 10,
2001; Mullie is his mother. He is a gelding, which
means he is a neutered male. He is gentle and very
A donkey's life expectancy is 30-35 years.
They mature at about 4 years of age, later than
Treats are expensive. These are
quick and easy to make and no 'mystery ingredients'.
Our dogs love them, too.
1˝ c grated carrots
1˝ c grated apples
˝ c molasses
10 oz rolled oats
4 oz Wheaties or similar cereal
Preheat oven to 325
degrees. Combine all ingredients in a large bowl.
Drop by large spoonfuls onto a lightly-greased cookie
sheet and gently flatten each cookie with the back of
the spoon. Bake for about one hours until cookies
Watch the Camera
What a ham! Rocket really does love the camera.
Rocket Man and Mullie have never been separated.
If something should happen to one, the other would
probably go into mourning.
mule is the cross out of a horse dam (mother) and a
donkey sire (father). Mules are almost always
A hinny is the cross out of a
donkey dam (mother) and a horse sire (father.
Haley Clark visits the Donkeys
Haley braved a frigid November day to
meet and spend time with the donkeys.
Amber loves to tease the donkeys!
Searching for a mouse in the woodpile. She tore up
that huge log trying to get a mouse.
We didn't have the heart to tell her we saw it run out
the other end and was long gone!
Amber with her buddy, Rupert (rear)
Rupert (left) has slowed down in his old age.
Amber is always a whirlwind of activity.
This was a rare moment when both were taking a rest in
Rupert Finds a Deer-Meat Snack
We often find along the property deer carcasses that
poachers have killed just for the head and antlers.
The bodies are left behind and sometimes thrown into the
Usually, coyotes or other dogs finish off the meat
within 24 hours. It was a frigid
February day so the carcass was frozen, solid. He
worked and worked to get some of the meat off the bones.
Are donkeys stubborn? No!
Donkeys are cautious to the extreme; they will not put themselves in
a dangerous position. So, they think things over before
acting. If they determine the situation to be threatening,
they - logically - refuse to do it.
donkeys are very 'easy-keepers', requiring only water, grass hay and
grass (no alfalfa, clover or sweet feed because those things are too
rich for donkeys; it makes them fat which causes health issues), a
farrier's visit only three or four times a year for trimming the
hooves, and an annual floating (leveling the teeth and removing any
sharp points). During a normal year -not counting Mullie and
Nettie's special issues- the care for all four donkeys is less than
what we spend on dog food for two Rottweilers!
donkeys were rescued from a less-than-ideal situation. A woman
had acquired these four wonderful creatures; we do not know when,
where, how or why. The woman and her husband divorced and she
left the farm, leaving the donkeys behind. They were in an old
one-car garage standing knee-deep in their own manure. They
were not being fed on a regular basis. Nettie has some minor
health issues including a tendency to founder (laminitis) and Mullie
has some health issues and dental problems. The vet bill for
equine dentistry in December 2011 was $ 715.00 and Mullie will need
a few follow-up visits!
would like to make a modest donation to help pay for their care it
will be greatly appreciated. 100% of donations received will
go to pay their vet bills, equine dentistry services (floating the
teeth), farrier services (trimming hooves and checking for
abscesses, white line and other hoof ailments) and feed (hay) - only
for items directly related to their care.
in advance for every donation - large or small - every penny
The Things We Make
Animal Patterns &
Matching Designs in Wood
Donkeys & Mules
Detailed Woodcut :: Shire, "Naomi"
Alpaca & Llama
Wood Silhouette :: Llama, "Se Llama"
Wood Silhouette :: Miniature Schnauzer
All-Natural Soap Selection
Lotion without a Bottle!
Mini-Dish, "Monkey Business"
Long Time Ago Farm on
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