Every year we treat more and more donkeys on island and this year was no exception with 274 to visit! Many of them were receiving their first vet and farrier treatments and we were extremely pleased that their owners were keen to learn about how to take care of their donkeys.
We also met a lot of very young foals that were born this year; one born only three days before we arrived. Several of the owners had already contacted us asking for advice of feeding the mare and taking good care of mother and baby. They were very grateful that we could go and check the foals, give further advice and show them how to get the foal used to being handled.
Unfortunately there continue to be donkeys living in terrible conditions without the basic care they require. Plastic, general rubbish, dangerous string, wire and metal, filthy water (if there is any), rotting vegetables and other inappropriate food are sights we still come across.
The majority of owners will take notice of our requests and advice, particularly if they see us picking up some of the rubbish in front of them. However, some do not and over the winter we will be collating evidence of the type of situations we come across to present to the authorities.
As most of you know, we do not have any legal jurisdiction and cannot force people to take better care of their animals. Without support from the authorities the lives of these donkeys will continue to be unacceptable. The Animal Welfare Act is quite clear about causing suffering and we will push to get the Law upheld. It's a painfully slow process but with your support, not only would we be able to try our hardest to do this but also continue to visit and treat more donkeys and improve their lives.