In the summer of 2015 Tony, one of our donkey assisted therapy donkeys, came in from the field with a damaged eye. A sharp object had evidently pierced the eye’s soft protective membrane, almost down to the retina itself. The best guess of the staff was that he had done the damage on a branch and, needless to say, the main concern was how to tackle Tony’s unique and concerning trauma.
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Birmingham Assisted Therapy's blog
It has been a very exciting few months for the staff and donkeys at our Donkey Assisted Therapy centre in Birmingham - and for one special donkey in particular. Shocks, the largest and one of the gentlest donkeys at the Sanctuary in Sutton Park is now featured in a national book! Amber’s Donkey went on sale around the UK at the end of January and focuses on a special story between Shocks and an extraordinary family.
It never gets any easier saying goodbye to one of our four-legged friends and I often wonder when is the right time to say goodbye to our beloved animals?
It is so easy to become wrapped up in our own emotions that you can quite easily say “just one more day”, but when you are a part of a large organisation which is supported by thousands of people around the world, you always have to put the care and welfare of the donkey first.
It has certainly been a busy summer for the donkeys and staff our centre here in Birmingham. In addition to the Holiday Club riding therapy sessions that we run for children with additional needs, we also had a record breaking number of visitors - over 20,000!
Of course, the donkeys themselves are enough of a reason to visit the picturesque Birmingham centre, nestled in the woodlands of Sutton Park. However, a couple of extra critters made an appearance and joined the donkeys during the summer months.
This September our donkey assisted therapy centre in Birmingham turns 21! Over the last few blogs we have met the donkeys and the children at our centre. In addition to the children who ride here, we are also pleased to be expanding our reach further still. For over 20 years the donkeys and staff at Birmingham have provided outreach visits to residential homes and hospices. The donkeys have proved no end of times that they can enrich the lives of the elderly, the sick and those in rehabilitation.