Friday, January 31, 2020


Yesterday Cochise was breathing funny, so I called Dr. Jeremy.  He told me what to do until he could get out here, which he did this afternoon.  In the meantime Cochise had let me know he didn't want his temperature taken.  Last night I asked Lynn to try and he got it done.  Lynn has turned into quite a  "donkey whisperer".  He can get them to cooperate more times than not.  

Cochise has a lower respiratory infection how he got it I have no idea.  First thing Dr. Jeremy asked was had he been off the property.  He did a walk the 11th of Jan, but that was too long ago. I guess it is something that can be passed around, but the incubation period is about 2 weeks.  

But before Dr. Jeremy came out, Suzanne, John and I headed out this morning to pick up 2 donkeys sight unseen.  I got a call awhile back from a woman that was looking for a farrier that would come out to her rather isolated area.  She had a gelding that had been laying down most of the last couple of weeks.  I gave her a name and number and low and behold Tyler went out and found a great big abscess in his foot.  Cleaned it up and the woman was quite thrilled.  She had told me she was looking for a new home for her 2 donkeys and she said something to Tyler about it, and he said he might know someone that would take them.  

Guess who he was thinking of?   LOL  We have tried to quit taking in healthy donkeys, they take up space that an unadoptable donkey might need.  But we've got a couple of empty pens, so we agreed, figuring since they were healthy we could probably rehome them quickly.  

 There is a big difference in healthy and adoptable unfortunately.  Jenny and Benjy are large standards and both of them are are obese by about 100 pounds each or maybe more.  They are in their teens and are not halter broke, which could make getting them in a stock trailer....interesting.  We started out trying to halter Jenny.  She wasn't the least bit interested.  Benjy was busy kicking up his heels, trying to bull his way thru the corral panels and in general letting us know, we were NOT invited into his space.  The woman said they would go in the trailer by themselves and you what?  She was right..............!!!  Talk about amazed, John and I couldn't believe it...........!! LOL  

 This is two nice horses that have been their friends for about 8 years. 

 The people have about 30 alpacas, they have sheared in the spring and sell the wool.  The woman said it sells for about $25 a pound..............YIKES...!!

Suzanne and I introduced them to animal crackers.  Not sure if this one was after crackers or Suzanne's phone.....or just wanted her picture taken....!!  

Guess what?  In all the excitement I didn't get even one picture of Benjy and Jenny........LOL  I'll try to get one tomorrow.  

It looks like Levi's foster home is going to be a foster failure, Robert says he wants to adopt him.  We've never had a foster returned, they end up staying in the foster home which is great.  

Some of you might know we have 4 house cats and one indoor/outdoor cat.  Four of them are males and one of them is a little muted tortoiseshell female that hates all of them.  She's always been a feisty thing, attacking the males and making their lives miserable until they've had enough and attack her, which makes her scream like they are killing her.  So we have to break it up, which of course makes her think we've taken her side.  

Recently she had gotten lethargic and wasn't acting herself, so off to the vet she went.  Found out she has hyperthyroidism and will have to be on medication the rest of her life.  That means 2 times a day she has to swallow half a small tiny pill.  Cats do not take pills readily and this one really isn't interested in cooperation.  I forgot to mention when you pet her if you aren't doing it right, she will scratch or bite you, so this is going to be fun.  

Linda started out being sneaky, petting and telling her what a good girl she is.  Two times and the game had to be upped.  Then I tried with ham, how she can find that tiny piece of pill is amazing, she's very good at it.  

So the last couple of days she is becoming a "kitty burrito".  That means I drop a towel over her while she is sleeping, wrap it around her neck, pick her up, make sure all feet and claws are covered, hand her to whoever is available, hoping they don't let a foot get loose, pry open her mouth and drop the pill into the back of her throat.  So far, so good we'll see how long it lasts. 

Monday, January 27, 2020


If anyone thinks they aren't, I've got news for you.  Frijolita has a reputation for opening gates, although she's behaved herself for years.  Recently she has reverted to her old tricks.  We had been wondering who was leaving the gate open between her and Tula and in the last couple of days the gate between Tula and Link.  

This morning after chores John was out by the pens and saw her working her magic on Tula's gate.  He said she got it open so quick he couldn't stop her, and headed straight for Link's gate.  Mystery solved, she's out there right now trying to get the gate opened again.  There is 3 gates into her pen and John clipped all 3 of them, so she is really working on them.  Hopefully the clips hold.....!! LOL  

She's not the only one that opens gates, Leo, Leddy, and Jasper to name a few.  We'd rather not have to clip them, it's harder to open them when you have feed buckets in your hand.  But we also like for them to stay where we put I guess we'll be clipping gates for awhile.  

It seems like right now they have spring fever.  They are eating the prickly pear cactus and also the grease wood bushes.  This is an annual ritual this time of year, must add something to their diet that they need.  

The other day Linda caught them in the dog pen.  That gate didn't open by itself.  I see Leddy in there, so he will get the blame.  She said the dogs were hiding out in the feed room.  They probably were upset that the donkeys were in their pen, because the dogs aren't allowed in the donkey's pens.  The donkeys were enjoying all the weeds that have sprouted up the last week or so, it's been sunny and warmer.  Maybe spring has arrived..........!!!  YIPPEE.....!!

Saturday, January 25, 2020

STAYING BUSY...........

That is all of us.  Between taking care of the donkeys, people races, donkey races, preparing for parades, doctor's appointments (prepare yourself as you age), and getting ready for the car racing season, we all stay busy.  

It usually works out there's enough of us to cover for each other, so everyone gets to do their thing.  It's really nice, for so many years John and I didn't have that luxury.  We've fed donkeys supper at noon and wouldn't get home to let them out of their pens until 4 o'clock in the morning, when we were racing 130 miles away in the old days.  Of course they insisted on being fed at 7am just like normal, so it made for a really short night for us.  LOL

We've had quite a few people come out this month to train or just interact with the donkeys one on one, rather than in a tour.

One family came out and spent quite a bit of time, running with the donkeys and learning how to burro race.  Even did a little bit of hill climbing.  As you can tell from the video Sugar has no problem with hills.  Linda said Sugar is getting bored running around here, so they are going to have to find new areas to keep her engaged.  

Big Gus thinks he's the welcome wagon.....

Next thing you know, his big head is INSIDE, and it isn't that easy to get his big heavy head OUTSIDE.....!!

Big Gus working his magic on John.  Gus would stand like that forever if you would let him.  Of course the other day, I had a tour and I guess we weren't paying enough attention to Gus.  He had already taken the tools out of the golf cart, so he started trying to dismantle the metal around the pipes coming out of the well house to the storage tank.  The metal is there to protect the pipes from meddling donkeys, not to be a toy.  Gus has no boundaries, as far as he is concerned the world is his and if you disagree, the problem is yours, it sure isn't his.  He makes life very interesting for everyone around him and it's fun to watch his antics. 

 Had one pretty big "play" day this month, with the Bray Club.  John and I held down the fort here, while Lynn, Linda and Suzanne loaded up 2 trailers of donkeys and head for Tucson.   They took about 15 donkeys and other people brought their donkeys. 

The event was in a very pretty area.  I think that is an important part of planning these outings, it has to be in an area that is pleasing to the eye.  

 I'm not sure who this donkey is, but he/she has a beautiful gait for pack burro racing.  At least it looks like it to me.

Wednesday, January 22, 2020

I'M BACK AGAIN..............!!

I guess some people missed my ramblings, since they let me know I hadn't updated in a timely manner...LOL  

For years and years John and I never got to go on trips together, because we had no one to take care of the "fur" kids.  Now that we have Suzanne, Lynn and Linda here, we can pack our bags and hit the road........!!

We spent 10 days up in the Phoenix/Apache Junction area.  The 3/8s mile dirt track at Apache Junction had 6 nights of racing with about 140 cars from all over the country including Canada over a 2 week-end time frame.

We missed the 1st night, the banquet for our race track in Tucson was that night.  I had to go get my 5th place trophy.  LOL  Got it and found out how much fun it is to babysit a trophy on a 10 day road trip trying to keep it from getting broke..........LOL  They are shiny and gaudy BUT it's all plastic I think you are suppose to take them straight home and enthrone them in a place of honor or a closet whichever you prefer.

We had a lot of fun, watching the races.......

During off time we went to the annual Barrett Jackson auction and car show in Scottsdale. 

 John got to drive a road course simulator.  He was the only one that didn't crash while we were there, he finished the course.  Maybe he should be racing instead of me......!!

 Just a few of the "goodies" available to look at.  This was one of 7 tents we saw, in the area we were in.  There is no way you could see everything there is to see, thousands of cars every direction you look.....!!  People too.

There was enough '57 chevys there to make a child of the 50s happy

There is a place called Cameron Trading Post up north on one of the reservations that is known far and wide for their Indian Fry Bread, of which I am particularly fond.  So my choice of a trip was to find that place.  

Really a nice stop and shop for people that are into that sort of thing.  They had enough stuff to look at and buy to keep anyone happy for hours.  I was just there for the fry bread. 

We had been told to come hungry and to share one.  Good advice, we asked to split it and it came out on 2 plates full.  I'm sure there are people that could eat the whole thing, but I couldn't even finish my half........LOL 
It was really good, but I make a pretty good fry bread also, although mine are a lot smaller. 

Spent the night in Flagstaff.  Didn't have to drive in snow, but did see the remnants of their last storm.

One day we drove up to Saguaro Lake, which was really a nice area.  Saw a couple of the Salt River wild horses resting in the shade.  I guess they are use to people, they didn't care we and some other people were gawking at them. 

We drove over to Wickenburg thru the Lake Pleasant area one day.  We've been thru there a couple of times before, and tried to find some of the burros that live there.  This time it was late afternoon and a good time for burro watching. 

This is one of 6 we both saw.  I saw 2 or 3 more, but by the time John got turned around, they had disappeared. 

We had a great time bumming around, wish it had been a little warmer.  The people from Canada and places like SD were running around like it was summer.  John and I couldn't hardly move we had so many layers on.  

Came home and everything was great, even had a new shelter put up. 

Cochise watching his shelter going up.  Good thing they got it done, they had quite a bit of rain while we were gone.  It seems like every time we leave for a few days, it rains, this summer Suzanne had to contend with our roof leaking. 

Paco being welcomed by Leddy and Muzzy.  Paco is a racing burro that lost his buddy recently and rather than have him lonely and by himself he will stay here until Lynn and Linda head back to Colorado.   In fact all 3 of these boys will go to Colorado this summer along with quite a few others.  I'm not sure what the final count will be.

Thursday, January 09, 2020


A few years ago we had a Mystery Tour come to see the donkeys.  They came out in a big black beautiful bus that was big enough to hold 53 tourists, a tour guide and the bus driver.........!! They had a great time, said it was the highlight of their trip.  They were headed to a winery from here, so that might have changed their minds.......!!! LOL  

Today we had a total of 58 visitors from one of the local RV parks.  They drove their own cars in a tag along tour, so there were a lot of vehicles.  We divided them up in 3 groups, Suzanne, Linda and I took off in different directions with our group and John followed along with extra timothy pellets in case they ran out.  Of course Cisco, Penny and Cheyenne can't eat pellets they have to have animal crackers or they might choke, so John was carrying them too.  

This was some of the crowd, we were waiting for the rest of the people to get parked

Buddy Brat and BlackJack behind him, working the crowd

Sugar, Lobo and Legend were in the Burro Barracks along with Jacque and Bunny

Everyone seemed to have a good time, asked lots of good questions and of course the donkeys worked really hard to get the people to give them pellets or crackers or whatever was being offered. 

Tour over.......... everyone gathered for last minute questions and away they went. 

Cochise has been going out for short runs and is doing really good.  In fact this week-end he will go out for a hike for the first time: 

N Secret Springs Dr, Marana, AZ

Once the word went out, all of the donkeys that usually go to these happenings were spoken for, and people were  disappointed if they didn't get a donkey.  So Cochise the new guy on the block and Boaz are going to be put to work.  It's only a 5 mile hike, split into 2 segments,  Boaz has never gone out before either, but I think they both will do just fine.

 Cochise spent a lot of time in this training session trying to get off the trail.  I guess he hadn't planned to run that day and was ready to go home.  He's got a real nice little trot and won't break into a lope like some of the donkeys do.  He just keeps trotting faster and faster.  He should be a good little racing burro, once he gets some experience.  That is, if he quits trying to NOT follow his running buddy...........!!

Wednesday, January 08, 2020

I'M BACK...................!!

Between now and New Year's John and I headed for Vado Speedway in New Mexico to watch some really good racing from the big boys in dirt late models.  They come out to this area to race in the winter, because they can't race in other parts of the country.  There were racers from 21 states and Canada.  Had 3 nights of racing, no really bad wrecks and a lot of good side by side racing.  Wish it had been warmer, but we bundled up and and a great time.

New Year's day was a lot of fun.  All the fun started the day before when the campers started showing up.  We had a potluck that night, with a bonfire.  Next morning the race started at 10am.  A lot of the people had never ran with donkeys before, but it really went pretty well.  A few loose donkeys, but they got caught and the race continued.

The start...........!!

They ran out our dirt road, to the main road, crossed it into the desert, ran in a big wash, circled around and headed home.  A few of the donkeys hadn't planned to run that day and some of their runners turned back rather than try to finish the race.  But they said they had fun, so it was a good day.   

John and helpers weighing hay for the next feeding

Plenty of dogs to join in the fun.......!!

A couple of hard working chore helpers.....!!

Nellie and Carlos resting up for the race.....!!

Running in the wash

Everyone was talking about next year, so this New Year's day run will probably become an annual event.  

Levi has gone into a foster home that will probably become a forever home.  

Levi with his new friends, Jenny and Angus

We had not planned on Levi being adopted until he had lost some more weight.  But Angus and Jenny's dad said he'd like to add Levi to his family.  

With an area like this to exercise in on a daily basis, how could we refuse..........!!  For now it's a foster, but the donkeys are getting along just fine with each other and we are anxious to see if the rough country will melt some of the weight off Levi. 

Levi and Angus checking out possible "toys"

Thanks Linda and Robert for the pictures and videos