I got in touch with a woman who had a jenny for sale over the weekend.The jenny seemed perfect; she said she could be hard to catch but was great when she was caught, easy to load, and all that. She was the perfect size, a good protector, and possibly bred. So, I attempted to schedule a time to see her, and it kept falling through. The lady wouldn’t respond to me for hours, then, we managed to get a day scheduled and I told her that I was going to plan to have a hauler come with me so she could come straight home if everything went well. She was a great price, much cheaper than the other jenny’s I’d seen, and I didn’t want to miss out on her. We proceeded to leave the house, ready to meet the hauler halfway there so he could follow us and…he didn’t show. We waited for nearly 30 minutes then went on to go see the donkey, and finally, he called, said he was sorry for running late, explained what had happened and said he’d be there shortly. I met the jenny, “Anna” (although she’s now renamed to Blossom) and they basically corralled her away from her herd and into a separate pasture. She was very shy, but after about 25 minutes of me being there, I was able to scratch her ears and she seemed to be very calm with me, I asked if I could go in and get a halter on her so we’d be ready, and she decided to be hard to catch. Long story short, I spent some time in there being patient, let her come to me, and I had the halter halfway on when one of her owners came in and all hell broke loose. She took off running, absolutely freaking out, and jumped the short side of the fence and ran out.
We spent a couple hours just trying to get her, and finally, our hauler showed up and he helped us get her in the trailer. We ended up having to back his trailer into the pasture, block the short side of the fence and run her into the trailer so she had nowhere else to go, and at this point my mother and I are thinking, “Oh gosh, what did we just get ourselves into?” I mean this girl was wild with those people. They then decided to tell me that she has a habit of dragging people around, she’s awful on the lead, she will hurt you, and so on. I freaked out, but she was on the trailer, we’d paid them, and we had the hauler to pay. He calmed our nerves and said that he would take her if she didn’t work out (he has a huge farm, absolutely beautiful, and said he always has room for another donkey since he always needs more protectors for his farm animals and they’re such easy keepers.) and off we went with her. I talked with a few people in a donkey Facebook group and they all told me to give her a chance and see how she acts when she’s with different people. The owners seemed rather harsh in how they interacted with her, so they told me to try a very gentle and soft approach and see how she’d do, so we kept in touch with the hauler, who turned out to literally be a God send despite him being late because I don’t think we could’ve gotten her in the trailer without him, and told him that we’d let him know how things go in a couple of weeks.
So, she got home, she was crazy. Would not let me within 50 feet from her, but on the brightside, she acted very calm with the herd on the other side of the fence, she went straight to grazing and other than not liking us very much, she was doing really good and behaving. I went back up this morning around 6am, she let me touch her nose then bolted, so I talked to her a bit more and left, then went back again a couple hours later and stood next to her, talked, turned my back and next thing I know, she’s behind me and sniffing my shoulder like, “Hey, you’re that person I liked yesterday.”
I discovered that the head and neck are good places to scratch, but anything behind her wither is no bueno. I tried, and she bolted pretty quickly but was able to contain herself and came back to me when she saw I wasn’t upset or going to run after her. Then, she let me touch her a bit more. I think all she needs is some time with no pressure to do anything, to realize that my touch isn’t bad. Her hooves are pretty bad, the front right is a mess, so I’m nervous to see how that first farrier visit will go. She’s a bit overweight, too, but not bad. I need to have my vet come do all of her vaccines and check her teeth out to see if we can figure out an age. She doesn’t look old to me, I’m thinking she is probably under 12-13 just by looking at her.
I walked off to go get something for Halfpint, and she ended up following me to the gate and taking a small piece of carrot out of my hand and let me hug her neck and touch her more. I’m eager to see how she does, we’ve started on a really good note.
In the future, I’d love to see her pull a cart. In all honesty, she’s big enough that I could even ride her without an issue so who knows, depending on her age we may give that a try, haha. Either way, she’s already been a fun addition and I’m loving the project.