Turbo and Jethro are two clever donkeys who needed a little extra attention to keep them content; our welfare team knew of a home where they’d fit right in.

Grooms in our new arrivals unit were keen to find the perfect home for the pair. They are such friendly donkeys, staff knew they’d make excellent companions for someone on our rehoming scheme. However, in their previous home they had been exhibiting behaviour traits which can be associated with boredom, such as chewing the wood on their stable and fencing. Chewing is something donkeys like to do naturally on logs and branches, but when not provided with suitable things to chew this behaviour can become destructive. Also, Turbo had a history of sarcoids (skin tumours), and would need a close eye kept on him in case of their return. Their new home would need to be with someone who had plenty of time, patience and knowledge.

Jethro and Turbo at The Donkey Sanctuary
Turbo and Jethro needed a new home that could provide them will all the extra attention they needed.
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Thankfully, the welfare team knew of a family who were in a position to rehome donkeys, and who she could see Jethro and Turbo having a wonderful life with. The Filby family live in Cornwall, and have a superb property with plenty of space and even a sand-school (exercise arena). Carol, her husband Trevor and two children Lilly and Harry were looking for two donkeys to be a part of their lives.

Welfare adviser Jenna Goldby visited the Filby family’s home and could see that this was a match made in heaven, and one that would fulfil all of Turbo and Jethro’s needs – space to keep them active, plenty of attention to keep them from being bored, keen and knowledgeable guardians who would love and care for them every day, and also a family whose lives would be enriched by the donkeys.  

When the team suggested the idea to Carol, she confirmed that she was more than happy to take on the handsome duo. She was not at all concerned about their previous behaviour worries, and would provide plenty of enrichment activities to keep their minds stimulated.

Carol said: “The family will enjoy spending lots of time with them. We’ll give the donkeys plenty of logs to provide a safe outlet for them to chew as they would do so naturally. We’d also like to train them to harrow the sand-school which will help with both their physical and mental fitness. The kids are already excited about making a track system of grazing into different mazes for the boys to enjoy!”

Jethro and Turbo with their new family
Turbo and Jethro have settled in perfectly at their new home.
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Turbo and Jethro made the move to Cornwall in May 2018, and as expected, they have settled in perfectly. Jenna has been to visit them regularly, to check if the family are ok and to offer any advice they might need. Jethro and Turbo looked happy and well - their field is full of toys, and both of them often walk over to the children for attention (and hugs!).

Jenna said: “I think it is safe to say that Jethro and Turbo have fitted straight in to the family! The Filby’s love having them to look after - so much so that they are even considering taking on another pair of donkeys to join the boys later in the year!”

Could you become a Donkey Guardian?

Through our rehoming scheme, people like you can offer a caring home for two or more of our donkeys in the UK.