I dunno what has happened lately, but considering that I own exactly ZERO donkeys, my life sure does seem a lot more donkey-centric than it should be.
First of all, Presto lives with a couple mini donkeys. They’ve been his pasturemates since he came to this barn, and it’s actually worked out pretty well for him. He doesn’t seem to see them as “equals” so he’s not attached to them at all, and they can’t really inflict any damage on him when they’re playing.
If you’re asking me, though, these donkeys… they’re kind of jerks. Bob, the bigger one, is a biter, and in a sneaky way. More than once he’s snuck up behind me and grabbed my pocket, or my shirt. He’s persistent, too, and tries to insert himself into the middle of whatever I’m there to do. It’s not that easy to tie a rope halter on the distracted yearling when you’ve got a miniature donkey doing his best shark impression right at waist-level.
Then there’s Dudley, the smaller mini donkey. He tends to try to steer clear of Presto as much as possible. Probably because Presto has decided that Dudley is really fun to chase, and I’ve seen him out there running Dudley’s fat ass in circles on more than one occasion. But Dudley is also a master escape artist, and if I don’t chain the gate shut behind me in exactly the right way, that little shit will be out of the pasture and GONE in 2 seconds flat. One morning I got to chase him around in the dark for 20 friggin minutes until I could get him cornered.
Then there’s Henry, who has no regular contact with donkeys, yet is somehow ridiculously obsessed with him. The few times I’ve let him sniff noses with the mini-donks at the barn, he’s been… um… very attracted to them. Henry thought he was definitely a stallion, and those donkeys were the prettiest things he’d ever laid eyes on. Luckily he pretty much never sees them in his day to day life.
Then, this past weekend, Henry had a complete and total meltdown over some donkeys. After we were done XC schooling I hauled him over to my friends place nearby, so we could stay the night. We turned him out in the paddock next to a couple horses and donkeys, and Henry proceeded to lose his marble (there’s only one in there, I’m pretty sure). The horses came up to the fence to say hi and Henry completely ignored them, staring past them toward the donkeys. Eventually those two finally wandered up to say hi to him as well, and Henry was OMG SO EXCITED ABOUT DONKEY FRIENDS.
Then the donkeys quickly lost interest and wandered away, and Henry’s meltdown began. He was running laps and screaming as if we’d just taken away and murdered all of his friends in the entire world. They were all of 30′ away at the time, mind you. He ran himself up into a sweat, so finally I had to just lock him up in a stall before he hurt himself. All these donkeys around and the Biggest Ass award goes to Henry. Clearly he is not mature enough to handle donkey neighbors. He didn’t give a shit about any of the horses, but he spent all night on-and-off pacing his stall and screaming for those donkeys. What. Even.
All of this drama seems to, OF COURSE, have triggered an ulcery reaction in Henry, who picked at his dinner the past couple days in a way that Henry never ever does unless his tummy isn’t happy. Great, just great. I think this time I’m gonna try to get the injectable omeprazole and see how that works… anyone used that yet?
Henry is officially banned from donkeys forever.
And all this wet weather has caused a leak in Presto’s outside stall, so he’s in the main barn for a while, which means I don’t have to deal with the donkeys when I go get him out of his stall. Fine by me, I’m about donkey-ed out at the moment. Horses are dumb. So are donkeys.