This soft October day was about our feeding routine. How is it that the animals always seem to eat before we do? Guess that’s the way it’s supposed to be.
First Poco anticipates the arrival of his hay……
Then, the girls, Perdita and Holly…..
Then K.J. and Ferdinand the cat……
K.J. gets his feed first while Ferdinand assists.
Finally Indy gets his munchies…….
It’s been a great day and a gorgeous sunset is accented by a moonflower display….
Donkeys! (say this like Mike Myers in Shrek please.) Well then, Donkeys. My husband and I own four miniature donkeys, Perdita and Poco (jenny and jack), plus their two offspring Holly and Indy (jenny and jack). A jenny is a female donkey, a jack is a male and who knows where this terminology came from. We acquired the original donkey Poco from our neighbor down the street. Story goes that Poco was a retired actor from “The Promise” a live nativity play in Granbury, Texas. (Poco was forcibly retired because he had the bad manners to keep biting the wise men and anyone else he could reach too. Not good for creating a heavenly atmosphere.) So we fell in love with the little guy when we fed him when the neighbors were away. Bingo, first donkey. For those of you who have never seen a miniature donkey, they are about the size of a Great Dane and are the sweetest animal alive. Gentle, although stubborn, as you may have heard, and will follow you around creating the most horrific volume ever heard in an animal cry, accompanied by loud and melodic farting. Very endearing habit that. You just can’t help but laugh. We had to get a mate for Poco of course and procured Perdita, a truly lovely pinto-colored donkey. Indy and Holly followed. Poco is the traditional gray donkey with the black cross-shaped spine and shoulder stripe that earned them the name “Jerusalem” donkey from the story that they carried Mary into Bethlehem. Poco had the nasty habit of “cribbing”, which is a routine where they go up to the fence, latch onto the wire with their top teeth, open their mouth and inhale air into their tummies with a loud sucking noise. It is evidently a little donkey endorphin buzz to do so. Animals crib just like some folks eat chocolate;they are bored and it makes them feel good. We tried everything to get him to stop. We changed his feed, rubbed the fence wire with hot sauce…..nothing. He was a cribbing addict. This used to drive my husband insane. He was convinced that Poco would break the fence wire, which would have to be replaced. (True) He has mellowed over the years and no longer reacts, but in the early years……. One afternoon I heard our truck coming down the driveway. Stop. The engine roars, wheels squeal and kick up gravel as my husband aims the truck directly at the fence where Poco is merrily sucking the fence (cribbing), making a noise that sounds like someone pulling their Wellingtons out of quicksand. Screech! The truck stops inches from little Poco’s face as my sweet husband leans on the truck horn. No reaction from Poco…absolutely none, nada. I hear more sucking noises. This little vignette was repeated several more times as I watched from the garden room window. Then I slowly backed away and lowered the shade. Some battles just have to be fought alone. “How was your day hon?”, I asked as George entered the house. “Fine.” Poco is still with us, although he now no longer cribs. I think he quit when we quit reacting. Hmmmmm….reminds me of some students I have.