You may have read my previous blog about the fabulous Enoch, the therapy foster donkey. Well his companion Jasper barely ever gets a look in as Enoch almost always steals the show and 14 year old Jasper is not usually as confident about getting peoples’ attention.
One day a small group of school girls from Amman Valley School in Carmarthenshire attended an animal care day with Ann who is Jasper’s foster owner. The day would give the girls a chance to learn about caring for donkeys, to gain confidence in handling donkeys and to begin to understand basic behaviour of donkeys.
The girls began the day with a varied amount of experience with horses and ponies but none had any experience with donkeys, so all were a little nervous when they first went into the barn to meet the donkeys.
As the afternoon wore on everyone was relaxing and Jasper really started to shine. He strode forward and asked everyone he approached for a hug (see photo). This really was unexpected as Jasper is usually more reticent, but it was lovely to watch the enjoyment on Jasper’s face and the joy on the girls’ faces.
The day showed just how interactive and rewarding donkeys can be, and just how much benefit both humans and donkeys alike draw from that contact.