Animal lovers are being invited to virtually meet The Donkey Sanctuary’s resident mules, as its award-winning Sanctuary From Your Sofa event returns.

Broadcast on Sunday 19 September from the sanctuary’s Town Barton Farm in the picturesque Devon village of Tedburn St Mary, viewers will be able to tune in from 2pm to a watch two live broadcasts, plus a pre-recorded film.

The virtual visit will showcase the sanctuary’s mules and reveal how intelligent these animals actually are.

Highlights from the forthcoming Sanctuary From Your Sofa includes a tour of Town Barton Farm and an opportunity to meet the grooms who care for the 100 mules and hinnies. Staff will also explain how mules differ characteristically and physically from donkeys.

The final live visit to the farm at 3pm, will focus on the individual stories of some of the resident mules who now call Town Barton Farm their home. One of the stories include that of nine-year-old mule Lugs, who came into the care of The Donkey Sanctuary as a foal in 2013.

Lugs was discovered cowering alongside her mother who had been severely injured. Despite the trauma early in her life, Lugs went on to make a full recovery thanks to expert care from staff at the charity and is now a favourite among grooms at Town Barton.

Paul Carter, Farm Manager at Town Barton Farm said: “We are really pleased to be able to give viewers a ‘behind the scenes’ look around Town Barton and demonstrate how we care for our resident herd.

“Mules are beautiful creatures and are often misunderstood, and we hope that by the end of the day, people will have a greater understanding of these special animals.”

The 144-acre farm, which is not open to the public, sits on the edge of Dartmoor National Park and is home to more than 100 mules and hinnies, as well as 170 donkeys, who are cared for by a team of 14 full and part-time staff.

Town Barton Farm is also a haven for wildlife, including foxes, deer, badgers, buzzards and brown hares. Areas of the farm are managed by the charity’s conservation team to help provide them with suitable habitat.
For the full running order and how to watch Sanctuary from your Sofa, please visit The Donkey Sanctuary’s website:


For interviews, images and information please contact The Donkey Sanctuary press office on 01395 573124 or 07970 927778 (including out of hours) or send an email.

Notes to Editors

The Donkey Sanctuary is the world's largest equine welfare charity. Our vision is a world where donkeys and mules live free from suffering and their contribution to humanity is fully valued. We run 10 sanctuaries around the UK and Europe, giving lifelong care to more than 7,000 donkeys and mules. Our hospital treats sick donkeys and trains vets both nationwide and worldwide. Our donkey-facilitated learning programme helps vulnerable children and adults develop life skills by connecting with donkeys on an emotional and physical level. The charity operates programmes worldwide for animals working in agriculture, industry and transportation, and those used in the production of meat and skin.

Please note that the name ‘The Donkey Sanctuary’ should not be abbreviated to ‘Donkey Sanctuary’, and the word ‘The’ should always appear with a capital ‘T’ as above.