80p out of every £1 goes directly on donkey welfare and care
When I first started in my role as manager of the Sidmouth Donkey Assisted Therapy Centre, there were two donkeys who had originally come from a big group in the New Forest and had only been living with the therapy team for a short while, having been specially selected from one of the Donkey Sanctuary farms due to their particularly friendly and sociable natures.
This meant that their potential had been spotted very early on as they had some of the ideal attributes that we look for when choosing donkeys to put forward for a role involving a great deal of human contact.
Canny Hart works in our welfare team and is currently working towards The Donkey Sanctuary’s Diploma. This is an in-house qualification that in part encourages staff to step out of their normal day to day environments. Canny recently joined me on a foray and writes about how the module she chose led her into the woods.
At The Donkey Sanctuary in Birmingham we have been trying out new forms of enrichment to keep our donkeys stimulated, happy and healthy. Now the weather has got warmer and the donkeys have been grazing in the fields, our staff have tried out three new ways to give the donkeys novel and exciting tastes and smells in the fields.
Adrian Greenwood is assistant retail and catering manager for The Donkey Sanctuary charity shop in Otley, Leeds. He’s also helping raise funds for The Donkey Sanctuary by joining the thousands of sponsored cyclists taking part in the 2017 Prudential RideLondon, the 100-mile bike ride held this July. Here, he discusses his training regime for the challenge ahead.
Just like Dr Dolittle, I bet you talk to your animals and some of you may say your animals talk right back! Many of our fabulous staff and volunteers at The Sanctuary can be heard deep in conversation with their donkey friends – who are very good listeners! Up until a few years ago researchers would say such behaviour had no place in science. However, animal welfare science has come on in leaps and bounds in the last couple of decades and it is now accepted that, in order to find out what an animal likes and dislikes, one just has to ask. And how do we do this?
Sally, the mule, is now living at our Town Barton Farm, where she is free to relax, play and roam safely in the company of her new friend Pilgrim. Sadly life had not always been this way for Sally.
When I first met her, she was living in what can only be described as squalor, she was stood in thick mud, with no food, water or clean resting area. The environment she roamed in was full of hazards which could have caused her serious injury.