It looks as if I have an interesting and challenging weekend ahead of me! Allen Andrews (Regional Welfare Officer for Northern Ireland) has asked me to assist with the relinquishment and collection of a donkey that appears to have been abandoned in a forest outside Garvagh (Co. Derry/Londonderry) for approximately 2/3 months.
Abandonment notices have been put in place by both the Department of Agriculture and the Police Service of Northern Ireland but to date no one has come forward to claim the donkey. Sadly the majority of our welfare work here concentrates heavily on abandoned donkeys often in a state of neglect.
The foresters have reported that the donkey is a black stallion of foreign extraction. The donkey appears to be of a nervous disposition and is reported as thin. As there is very little grass coverage for the donkey to graze on in the forest the foresters have been sharing their lunchtime sandwiches with the donkey which seems to appreciate their kindness.
Allen has named the donkey Fred after one of the foresters who highlighted the plight of the donkey to the Sanctuary.
So tomorrow Allen and myself will converge at the forest to assist with Fred’s situation. Let’s hope that his situation is not extreme.
Head collars, lead ropes, lunge lines, wellies and a big bucket of feed are at the ready!