Having so many very elderly, ex-working donkeys here, it’s a sad fact of life that we have to say goodbye them. Many have spent their former lives living in relatively harsh conditions, receiving a diet that beggars belief and never having seen a vet, they are, like many of their owners, quite a tough bunch.
In July we had to say goodbye to one of the toughest, most determined old donkeys we’ve known. Shilionas came to us in 2008 as he could no longer work due to failing eyesight.
He soon settled in with us, benefiting from daily medication, and we quickly learnt what a feisty old chap he could be!
Over the years his eyesight deteriorated until he became completely blind. When we moved the donkeys from Vouni we were concerned how he would cope in new surroundings but we needn’t have worried. Using his whiskers to find his way around, he quickly knew where everything was and was given his own padded stable at night to keep him safe.
Despite reaching his 30s and having a few age related problems, giving him a soft food diet and daily medication, he was always in good condition with a shiny coat. He loved standing out in the rain so we got him a waterproof rug for the winter to keep him clean and dry which he loved.
He would always come over to you when called and wait patiently outside the barn at tea time, calling loudly if you took too long to bring him in! During the autumn we noticed he wasn’t quite his normal self and blood tests revealed he had some kidney issues. Despite medications and our best efforts, we knew the time had come to say goodbye. He was one of our all-time favourites and this tough old character will always have a large place in our hearts