On his penultimate day of work experience with the PR team, Sam Pearson met some donkeys with a difference. He explains:
Yesterday, I went for a walk to meet the, particularly special, Poitous; a large hairy rare breed of donkey from France. Approaching the field where the Poitous live, there was an almost unreal silhouette of something that appeared to resemble a mammoth rather than a donkey. As the donkeys came into better view, the idyllic scenario was somewhat ruined by the rather amusing sight of the rest of the herd; which had formed a perfect line and were all grazing heartily.
Going into the field to get a more hands-on meeting with the Poitous, their sheer size suddenly struck me. Approaching with some caution, I met Gilbert, one of the largest Poitous in residence at The Donkey Sanctuary. It was at this point I discovered just how affectionate these giants were. However, with their heads stood well about mine and feet the size of car wheels (or so it seemed), these are by far and away the worst animals for forgetting their own size and strength when pestering for attention.
As daunting as these particular breed of donkey may seem initially, they are well worth meeting up close if you get the chance. Their long hair, which sets them apart distinctively from other donkeys, makes stroking these donkeys an experience in itself; teaming this up with their immense size it makes it something truly unforgettable.
If you would like to have a chance to meet these gentle giants, you can take part in one if the ‘Meeting the gentle giants’ tours. For more information please visit http://www.thedonkeysanctuary.org.uk/node/5742 or telephone on 01395 573156.