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Press releases

Volunteers wanted to build boxes for Devon’s wildlife

The Donkey Sanctuary is welcoming volunteers to its Woodland Box Volunteer Day near Sidmouth on Wednesday 23 August from 10am to 4pm.

Volunteers are needed to help build and put up nest boxes for dormice, bats and woodland birds on Donkey Sanctuary land at Paccombe Farm in Harcombe, near Sidbury, which is home to almost 400 donkeys and surrounded by 93 acres of amazing woodland.

A volunteer checks woodland box

Donkeys left to suffer after owner failed to trim their hooves

A man who failed to trim his donkeys’ overgrown hooves, leading three of them to suffer in pain, has been fined by magistrates.

James Derek Pickford (DOB 30/01/1935), of Lowe Hill, in Leek, Staffordshire, was found guilty of causing unnecessary suffering to three donkeys and failing to meet the needs of seven donkeys following a trial at North Staffordshire Justice Centre this week.

Staffordshire donkey rescue

Donkey skin trade concerns presented to Australian government

Campaigners from The Donkey Sanctuary and the RSPCA Australia have been in Darwin in the Northern Territory this week, talking to government officials about the donkey skin trade and an emerging threat to wild donkeys in the country.

Australian donkeys are at risk from the growing global trade that is wiping out populations of working and wild animals, devastating impoverished communities, and causing widespread animal suffering.

Alex Mayers from The Donkey Sanctuary, Chris Hancock from RSPCA Darwin, and Jed Goodfellow from RSPCA Australia

New protests and export bans as opposition grows to donkey skin trade

Opposition to the donkey skin trade is escalating by the day in Africa, with street protests from donkey owners in Kenya and the Government of Botswana banning the export of donkey products.

The huge demand from China for a traditional medicine called ejiao, made from donkey skins, is resulting in donkey-dependent communities around the world being targeted by skin traders, with a legal trade being supplemented by an illegal trade in stolen and slaughtered donkeys.

n Kenya, peaceful, grassroots protests by donkey owners have been taking place over the past few weeks, with the most recent held in Ongata Rongai, south-west of Nairobi.

New start for Spanish donkey with overgrown feet

When a Good Samaritan in Spain discovered a neglected donkey who could barely walk, there was a team of people ready to spring into action.

The Donkey Sanctuary's Spanish rescue centre, El Refugio del Burrito, were alerted to the plight of the stricken donkey who they now know as Jasmin.

Thought to have been abandoned and roaming for 13 years, Jasmin survived on river water and long grass she found nearby in Cordoba - but the lack of treatment had left Jasmin with grossly overgrown hooves.

The exhausted mule of El Rocio

Every year in June, the Spanish town of El Rocio plays host to a pilgrimage attracting nearly a million people and 20,000 equines.

For the third year running, a team from The Donkey Sanctuary has been on hand to ensure that care of the animals is being upheld.

While many of the injuries witnessed are often due to ill-fitting harnesses, the hard-working animals in the heat of the sun can also succumb to dehydration and exhaustion leading to potentially fatal situations.

Exhausted mule in El Rocio

Father and son appear in court over donkey neglect

A father and son who run a Liverpool-based donkey business have been sentenced in court after pleading guilty to causing unnecessary suffering to five of their donkeys.

Eric Wheeler (DOB 26/2/1933), of Dalemeadow Road, Liverpool appeared before Liverpool Magistrates' Court on Monday, 5 June and pleaded guilty to five offences of causing unnecessary suffering.

Some of the donkeys owned by the Wheelers

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