Thursday, February 27, 2020


It looks like she has something going on that she isn't going to be able to overcome.  She's not very interested in eating at all except for fruit.  Not interested in any normal "equine" food.  

She is probably in her 30s and it seems these older animals have internal problems if they live long enough.  Lipomas are a big problem with the older ones.  Dr. Jeremy said he will come out Saturday, so  hopefully we can keep her comfortable until then.  

Penny has been here since 2012 I think.  She came out of a hoarding situation that operated as a rescue.  When the rescue was finally shut down, all the animals had to be transported to Tucson and the rescues in Arizona were asked to help.  John took our stock trailer up to Chino Valley to help with the hauling.  He saw Penny in a pen with other jennies.  She was hunchbacked, skinny and not very friendly.  He asked if he could take her, since she wouldn't be adoptable and they said yes.  

She's mellowed over the years, lots of animal crackers helped with that. A few years ago she had to go to the surgical clinic up in Gilbert for colic surgery.  She had a ball of mesquite beans in her intestines and there was no way they would pass, although the local vet tried for 5 days and the clinic up there tried another 5 days. 

If she had been a horse, she probably wouldn't have survived for 10 days and then surgery, but donkeys are tough.  Unfortunately being tough doesn't mean much when the body wears out.  I doubt that she ever had a "real" home, I could be wrong, maybe at some time in her life she was loved and appreciated before she came here.  She was BLM so she came off the range somewhere.  Her hunchback was probably a birth defect, so she wouldn't be the pretty donkey a family would pick out of a herd to take home for the kids.  At some time in her life she was a roping donkey.  We don't know that for sure, but when she first came here, she was a fear kicker and would try to strike with her front feet, like a deer.  Very odd behavior for a donkey.  They probably roped her front legs, which is also a good guess as to how her jaw got broke from crashing on the ground.  The fear kicking was really exciting, you never knew what would set her off, but over the years she mellowed to where she was safe to be around and we could even touch her ears.  Never her mouth, she's always been very protective of her mouth, probably because of the broken jaw. 

She's come a long way and has gotten a chance to eat a lot of animal crackers.  Unfortunately all things come to an end and it's time to say good bye.  Over the years people tell us what a wonderful thing we do and we always tell them, it's usually fulfilling and a wonderful experience, but not when this decision has to be made. 


Witcheylady said...

So sorry Tish. Never an easy decision to make. But at least she was cared for these last years of her life. My heart goes out to you. I know how much you care for these donkeys.

ellie k said...

So sorry, I know you love these guys and through this blog I and many others have come to know and love them also. Hope she can enjoy a few more animal crackers.

Tish said...

I'll be glad when tomorrow is over, this morning she went down and couldn't get up on her own. We got her up and she has been up all day, but she isn't eating, so we're just waiting for tomorrow. John did all the preparation yesterday.

Anonymous said...

Tish, so sorry for you & John. Thank you for giving Penny love and care.

Tish said...

John and I had to get her up last night at bedtime, but she stayed up thru the night and was actually perky this morning. Dr Jeremy got here at 10, she got 2 pre shots, and all the animal crackers she could eat, until the sedatives took effect. Then the final shot, she went quietly as it should be. Dr. Jeremy and his dad stayed to help John bury her. He dug the grave a couple of days ago, and in the past John's done it by himself, but it was so much easier with help. Dr Jeremy stays so busy it really meant a lot for them to take the time to help.