Donkey As A Companion
Posted 27 March 2010 - 08:51 AM
Thought about a goat but we don't have goat safe fencing so the goat would wander all over and Dream would try to follow.
What about a mini donkey? Are they good companion animals for a horse? How much to they eat? Grain? How does one take care of their feet? They will stay inside an electric fence correct?
Thanks for the education. Any other thoughts on a companion animal would be great too. NO more horses though. We have all we can keep up on now.
Posted 27 March 2010 - 10:49 AM
"You better program your life...before it programs you..."
Posted 27 March 2010 - 11:22 AM
One thing to think about is you need to WORK with a donkey, just like you would with a horse, maybe even more, or it could become a nuisance or uncontrollable. If you get a full-size donkey, get one that is broke to ride and you can work it on the ground and/or under saddle. If you get a mini, do groundwork regularly with it. A disrespectful donkey is not a pretty sight.
To answer your question, yes... a donkey can be a good companion. I've never had one, though, so can't tell you about their feed requirements. I know there are others here who can and I'm certain they will contribute their knowledge.
Good luck! Post pics if you get a donkey.
Board Buddies I've met:
Bingos Peppy The Duke, Mar'03 Paint gelding
Porcelain, Feb'04 pinto mare (Paint X pinto American Warmblood)
The whole Driftin' family; quarterpaint; mtn_penny & mtn_sheepdog; Cindyp & mr.CindyP;
glass horse; mrs & mr mrs; LongingToRun; HTR; TRB; Tazzin; KatyBlackjack, onesweetfrog and daughter, glass horse -- Hi, y'all!
Posted 27 March 2010 - 12:06 PM
Both of them were real good buds, played in the pasture and always next to each other. So, Yes, it's a good idea, haha.
Cabela- 5 year old Catahoula x
I met a board Buddy: rodeoforlife and Lovin' Weasel
Posted 27 March 2010 - 01:19 PM
Donkeys don't eat a lot, they don't handle lots of sugars and protein very well. Lesser quality grass hay is all that is necessary for them. Unless very old, or ill, donkeys don't require, and shouldn't be fed any grain of any type. If your gelding gets grained, tossing a handful of carrots into a bucket for the donkey will keep him happy and busy while your gelding eats.
As far as hoof care, most donkeys are fine with whatever trimming schedule you have for your horses. Mine is on a 6-8 week schedule right now, but, like horses, it depends on the animal. In winter, when growth slows down, they normally go about 10 weeks at the sanctuary between trims. Make sure your farrier is knowledgeable about doing donkey feet, as they are shaped a bit differently. Their feet have a steeper slope than horses.
I would suggest a small standard size donkey, as minis seem to be a bit more problematic, IME. I think it may be short guy syndrome
Donkeys, as I mentioned, are very intelligent. If they know where home is, and they respect boundaries, keeping them is is no issue. Some donkeys love the challenge of escaping, so if your fencing is less than perfect, a donkey will find his way out, however they are opportunists, so they won't work too hard to get out. Open gate, donkey will be out exploring, lower section of fence, unless it's low enough to step over without effort, donkey will ignore it and stay in his safe, happy pasture with his buddy. When donkey bonds to buddy, even if donkey gets out, if buddy can't or doesn't, donkey will stay with buddy, maybe just on the other side of the fence to prove to you that he can get out. Before my horse passed, the BO regularly left the gates open, but neither animal ever left their field unless they were led or called out. I went one time, and both boys were standing beside the open gate, with their heads over the fence asking to come in.
I love donkeys, and personally feel that everyone with livestock should have one for protection from predators. They are very adaptive and extremely smart.
Posted 27 March 2010 - 07:15 PM
Posted 27 March 2010 - 09:07 PM
Posted 28 March 2010 - 03:38 AM
Donkeys don't train like a horse, they are much more challenging to teach because they are way smarter and can out manoever a human better than a horse can, so TRAINED and friendly is what you HAVE to have to avoid all kinds of issues with your new donkey.
They normally HATE dogs and goats so watch those animals don't go in with your Donkey, especially at first. Most donkeys, once they know an animal belongs there won't kill it. My eartha didn't care, she wanted to kill the small goats so I had to get rid of her, since that was the point of getting her; to guard goats.
Take ALL of GeneralMyBaby's advice to heart. It's all spot on. NO grain and low quality hay. They live off scrub in the desert so they will get sick and/or over fat on high quality feed. Once a donk gets a roll of fat on their crest. It's ugly and almost impossible to get rid of.
But, don't forget, some horses hate donkeys and mules. I know a couple horses like that. So, introduce them slowly. Don't just throw the donk in there.
Give them what they want until they don't want it any more.....
Snake "Murdering" a Specialty
---In the quiet light of the stable, you hear a muffled snort, the stomp of a hoof, a friendly nicker. Gentle eyes inquire:............................................. ..................................................."Got Carrots?"
I'm IN with the "IN-CROWD"
"Fight nonsense with nonsense, it works everytime~!!!"
I am living proof that God made some people just for the "Hades" of it..
now don't that sound dumb?
Skrew you~!! I crap brilliance.
Posted 28 March 2010 - 04:36 AM
Theres no such thing as PEOPLE with HORSE issues, Just HORSES with PEOPLE issues. - Buck Brannaman
Even though you've been Bucked, Kicked Bit and Stomped... Never Give Up....
Silly Boys..Trucks Are For Girls
I Haven't Got A Pot To Pee In, Or Even A Window To Throw It Out Of..
I FINALLY Met A Board Buddy - Mudder, Taglet, Barnboss
Posted 29 March 2010 - 08:24 AM
We have a ...I can't remember what ya' call her but she is a mule ( but a donkey mama, not a mare) She is great too...behaves like a donkey....
They are characters.....get two or three if you can....try to only get jennys....I heard jacks are pushy so we got girls instead....worked out great.
They mark territory...and mark over another's mark...like big game cats in Africa....so strange.
They kick coyote BUTT...big time.....
Posted 29 March 2010 - 02:33 PM
The only issue I have with her is that she likes to stand next to you, whatever you are doing, and gets in the way sometimes. Love her to death!!
I think they make a great companion.
Posted 30 March 2010 - 09:40 PM
I have the most trouble with their feet. We couldn't get any grass hay, and only had good alfaha this year (usually a good thing!). I am having a terrible time with feet this year, but am working on fixing that too. They can founder easily, and don't need grain! But, all of that has already been covered.
Make sure to post pictures, they're just adorable!