When you think of farm animals, mini donkeys may not be the first animal that comes to mind. Don’t be fooled, because mini donkeys can actually serve a great purpose on your farm! Keep reading to find out all about mini donkeys!
What are mini donkeys good for?
Donkeys in general, and that includes mini donkeys, have a reputation for being stubborn. However, a lot of people don’t know that the origin of that actually had nothing to do with their temperament! One theory is that it stemmed from a word that meant to direct or control, and not necessarily what we would consider stubborn these days. On the contrary, mini donkeys are easily trainable and so very smart.
If you were in need of a good draft animal that will also enjoy hanging out with you, a mini donkey would be the right choice. Donkeys are well known for being able to carry heavy loads, and if you run a farm you may find yourself utilizing your donkey for their strength from time to time.
Mini donkeys can also be incredible livestock guardians. They have been known to protect smaller animals like goats and chickens from any predators that may try sneaking into the pasture or barn. You can always rest assured that if you have more than a few donkeys like I do, it’s going to take more than a sneaky fox to get past them!
Are mini donkeys hard to care for?
Mini donkeys require much less care than other animals of their nature. For example, horses and dairy cows can be very high-maintenance pets compared to mini donkeys. However, for the companionship that they bring, these donkeys really don’t require special care unless they are pregnant.
One thing we do put focus on when caring for our mini donkeys is selenium. This is a naturally occurring element that is usually found in soil. In areas where the soil is rich in selenium, it will naturally grow into the hay or grass that the mini donkeys eat. However, in most places, this needs to be supplemented as it is a crucial part of a healthy mini donkey diet.
The other main mini donkey care topic is grooming. Grooming your mini donkeys is essential to making sure that they are healthy and happy! Their hair is much longer than you would see on a horse and can get easily matted. We recommend making sure that you try brushing your mini donkey no less than once a week. Here are some products we swear by!
In addition to being great to work animals, mini donkeys also come packed with personality. I would compare the personality of a mini donkey to that of a dog, but much more relaxed. Our mini donkeys love to get attention, and love hanging around with all of their other animal friends.
One thing to note is that if you are only looking to get one mini donkey for your farm, it would be a better idea to go with a female mini donkey. If a male donkey is alone with the other livestock, they may be more aggressive and cause harm to the animals around them. However, they are great in pairs!
Similar to a dog, we sometimes take our mini donkeys on little strolls around the farm. Instead of a leash, we use a halter instead and they will walk calmly alongside us for as long as we choose to walk. As I mentioned before, mini donkeys make great guardians for smaller animals on your farm. What may surprise you is that mini donkeys have been known to soothe an anxious horse as well!
These animals are truly loving, loyal, quirky, fun, and a joy to be around. What do you love about mini donkeys? Tell us in the comments, friends!
Christina & Trevor
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