Courageous little Molly has won our hearts
“We could see the struggle in Molly’s eyes when we rescued her,’ recalls Jane Bruce, our Area Welfare Officer for Northern Ireland, ‘a struggle that revealed a year of unimaginable pain and suffering”.
Neglected by her owner who was too ill to care for her; poor Molly was fighting for her life. A neighbour raised the alarm, but when we arrived at the scene we could only hope that we had reached her in time. Her overgrown and twisted hooves were so painful that it was almost impossible for her to stand, and she was weak with hunger because her neglected teeth had made it so painful for her to eat. Even her skin was tender and crawling with lice, and she could hardly see through the shaggy, matted hair that had grown over her eyes.
Thanks to our kind supporters, we were able to take Molly into our care and give her a second chance in life. Please help us to save more donkeys just like Molly by giving a donation today.
Molly was quiet and withdrawn when we found her, but she still trusted us to help her despite her suffering. She was so sore after being unloaded from the lorry that she sank to the floor, hanging her head in exhaustion whilst we made up her bed for the night - the first warm and dry bed she’d had in a very long time. We felt sure she knew we would do all we could to make her feel better and that she was, at last, safe.
This poor donkey had come to the right place to receive the care she desperately needed, but her long journey back to health had only just begun.
“I was beginning to lose count of the x-rays, hoof trims, dental examinations, extra feeds and medication that she had”, recalls Jane Bruce, who has cared for Molly since her arrival. “Luckily Molly has proved herself to be a true fighter, a brave little donkey whose endearing and stoical personality has won our hearts and whose resilience has given her the strength to carry on.”
We could see the struggle in Molly’s eyes when we rescued her.
Molly underwent over five months of intensive farriery treatment to repair her hooves. Progress was slow and some days she seemed dull and depressed, lying down and refusing food. Gradually however the months of tender, loving care saw Molly turn a corner and now, remarkably, her hooves have almost completely recovered. It’s a joy to see her up and about, grazing and trotting around with her donkey friends. Her coat is now sleek and glossy, a far cry from the matted, lice infested fur she arrived with, and her trips to the equine dentist have improved her teeth, allowing her to eat without pain.
Molly is a delightful, brave little donkey who has never once complained despite the pain and endless treatments that she endured, and our team of carers adore her.
Although Molly has made remarkable progress since we rescued her, we have now identified some new health issues which will need careful monitoring and further investigation. Molly will continue to receive the best possible care and attention and we are doing all we can for her.
How you can help us
Here at The Donkey Sanctuary we give life-long care and love to donkeys that have nowhere left to turn.
- Donating £5 today can rescue abandoned and neglected donkeys just like Laurel and Hardy from terrible conditions by helping to keep our emergency rescue vehicles on the road.
- Donating £16 today can give two abandoned donkeys the nutrition they need to start their recovery to good health. Many of the donkeys we rescue are malnourished and underweight and need a carefully managed diet to help them build up their strength and set them on the road to recovery.
- Donating £30 today can give an abandoned donkey relief from painful hooves. Donkeys’ hooves need to be checked and trimmed regularly by the farrier to ensure they are in good condition and free from pain.
- Donating £40 today can provide rescued donkeys with comfort from painful teeth. Many abandoned donkeys suffer with poor teeth, making it difficult for them to eat and stay healthy. A visit to the equine dentist can turn their lives around, enabling them to eat in comfort.
- The Donkey Sanctuary was founded in 1969 by Dr Elisabeth Svendsen. Sadly, she passed away in 2011 but her memory lives on in our work, as does her eternal motto that, in everything we do, donkeys will always come first, second and third.
- The Donkey Sanctuary’s vision is a world where donkeys live free from suffering and their contribution to humanity is fully valued.
- There is estimated to be 50 million donkeys in the world. By 2018 we aim to double our reach to two million donkeys in 40 countries.
- Our aims include: never to turn away from donkey and mules in need and to provide lifelong care for them in the UK and Ireland; to reduce the suffering of domestic and working donkeys due to neglect, ill-treatment, illness, ignorance and injury; and to improve the lives of both donkeys and people through positive human donkey interactions.
- We currently work in 34 countries worldwide through major projects and collaborations. These projects mean we were in reach of 1.6million donkeys, and we directly treated almost a quarter of a million donkeys and mules in 2015.
- Since commencement of the charity in 1969 over 18,800 donkeys and mules have been provided with a sanctuary for life. 6,600 donkeys and mules are currently in our care at our sanctuaries, holding bases and through our Rehoming Scheme in the UK, Ireland and Europe. This includes the 960 donkeys and mules we rescued in 2015.
- We seek to analyse, understand and respond to emerging donkey welfare problems and to advocate on behalf of donkeys and bring their welfare issues to the forefront - at local, national and international levels.
- In our efforts to reach the world’s population of donkeys and mules, we work hard to impart our knowledge on the care and welfare of donkeys through training and education programmes.
- The Donkey Sanctuary is a registered charity and we rely entirely on donations and legacy gifts to fulfil our worldwide work with donkeys and mules. You can help the Sanctuary today by donating, fundraising, volunteering, adopting and rehoming.
- Our Sanctuary in Sidmouth, Devon, is our international headquarters and is open to the public 365 days a year.