Pictures of Our Mini-Donkeys

The sole purpose of this page is to show off my dear mini-donkeys. They were both born in the fall of 2012. Chester, the brown one, is 31.5 inches tall at the withers and is a true miniature donkey. Meadow, the gray one, is about 37 inches tall at the withers and is classified as a small standard. These two are my dear friends and companions. They love attention, are curious, smart, and just so much fun to live with. I love sharing their antics. The pictures are in chronological order with the most recent at the top. The captions are beneath the photos.
 
July 2017. These are the newest donkeys on Our Tiny Farm. They are boarders. The momma is Faith and the baby is Hope. They are a joy to have here.
 
Late May 2017. People always make comments about the fly masks, but they make the donkeys so much more comfortable! They gladly wear them.
May 2017. The donkeys enjoying a sunny spring afternoon in the paddock.
Mid April 2017. Little Chester had to have surgery to remove a growth from his chest. Fortunately, it turned out to be a benign tumor. Trying to keep a bandage on him was interesting!
April 2017. Hubby enjoying a little time in the paddock with Meadow (lower photo) and Chester (upper photo).
January 2017, trying on the new winter blankets the donkeys received for Christmas. Fortunately, it never got cold enough to ever actually have to use them.
January 2017 and Meadow is getting chubbier and chubbier. So now we are trying a slow feeder. In this case, a NibbleNet. Not only does it slow down their eating, but there is virtually no wasted hay!
It was a warm, sunny December afternoon (2016) and Chester and Meadow were just enjoying playing with anything they could find.
Donkeys love to chew on wood, e.g., fence posts, barns, wheelbarrow handles. As the grass growing season slows and they spend more time around the barn and the paddock, one worry is that they will get bored and start chewing on the barn. So, we feed them sticks! Keeps them busy and it is something they would chew on if they were wild little burros (October 2016)
Donkey ears. Just gotta love those ears!
Little Chester enjoying a warm September 2016 afternoon in the paddock.
Meadow is such a pretty little donkey. This picture is in her paddock in July 2016.
mini-donkey-in-red-scarf
mini-donkey-wearing-red-scarf-in-North-Carolina
close-up-of-mini-donkey-in-red-scarf
It was an unseasonably warm holiday season this year and we all got used to running around in shirtsleeves. The donkeys, too, were spoiled by the warm weather. Today (January 18, 2016) it was 20 degrees F in the morning. Everyone seemed a little shocked by the cold, so just goofing around, I put my red scarf on Chester's neck.
mini-donkey-face-close-up
This picture of Meadow was taken on January 17, 2016. Look at all the fur on her face. Compare that with some of the summer pictures. People always ask me if we blanket our donkeys. Not when they put on natural coats like this!
Mini-donkey-with-brush-North-Carolina
One of the grooming brushes has a little tiny strap on the handle. Chester gets that in his teeth and twirls the brush around. One of his favorite little tricks (January 17, 2016).
minature-donkey-playing-North-Carolina
mini-donkeys-playing-in-North-Carolina
In these two photos above on January 17, 2016, I had been grooming the donkeys and went back into the barn to get a different brush. When I returned I found Meadow chewing on and tossing around my stool and Chester had my brush. I love the look on Meadow's face when she noticed I was there and dropped the stool.
brown-mini-donkey-North-Carolina
brown-miniature-donkey
Two close-ups of little Chester in mid-December 2015 showing off his winter coat. It will get even fuller as the season progresses.

Meadow in mide-December 2015. You can see that she is putting on her winter coat. More fur on her forehead and jowls.
 mini-donkey-playing-north-carolina
I put the treats (oyster crackers this time) in a small round plastic coffee container. Chester got hold of it but was quite frustrated because it was so hard to pick up. He finally wedged it against the wood so he could crush it enough to make an edge that he could get between his teeth. Smart little donkey (December 12, 2015).
miniature-donkeys-playing-together
The donkeys usually get along just fine, but on this fine October afternoon, a squabble broke out over the container holding their treats (it was animal crackers this time).
mini-donkey-toys
Donkeys like to play and if not provided with toys will make toys out of just about anything, including fencing, barns, water troughs, and gates. So we provide toys for them. Lots and lots of toys. I was playing with them on this beautiful afternoon (October 16, 2015) and made an arrangement with their toys just to see what they would do with it.
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This is little Chester checking out my handiwork.
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It didn't take long for him to knock everything down...
miniature donkey with toys in North Carolina
and spread the toys all around the paddock.
miniature donkey playing with toys in paddock
Then I set everything up for Meadow.
miniature donkey playing with toys in paddock
She pulled the pink wand out of the orange cone...
miniature donkey playing with toys
and proceeded to knock everything down with it. That is a donkey using a tool, my friends! I told you they are smart. Very smart.
miniature donkeys in the sunshine
We are having a lovely autumn in western NC (October 14, 2015). The colors are bright and the temperatures are just perfect. I love spending the afternoons with my donkeys just enjoying being alive.
miniature donkey and overturned bucket
Donkeys love to play and they can turn most anything into a toy. Here Meadow has discovered a small bucket. It is upside down and she wants it right side up. It was fun watching her figure how how to turn it over. First she pushed it around the paddock for awhile, which made a great noise that she enjoyed.
She finally got the bucket upright which meant she could carry it all over the paddock, eventually dropping it into the water trough. We find lots of thiings in the water troughs.
miniature donkey and plastic tub of water
It is the very end of August. The air is starting to cool and the days are obviously shorter. The donkeys seem to enjoy this weather. I cleaned the water troughs this afternoon and Chester was "checking it out".
miniature donkey putting head on person's shoulder
 Chester likes to put his head on my should like he is going to whisper something into my ear.
cresty neck on mini-donkey
It is mid-August. Meadow, the gray donkey, really started to put on weight this summer. You can see it in the cresty neck that she has. In June we started using a grazing muzzle on her (see photos below), but when it got really hot, it just seemed cruel to expect her to wear it. So we started keeping the donkeys in the paddock area during the day. At first they didn't like being separated from the horse, but we put a hip-height barrier down the center of the barn so when they all came in to cool off in the shade they can touch noses and be right close to each other. They are used to it now, but run right out and start munching on grass as soon as we let them onto the pasture each eveing.
grey miniature donkey eating grass
Here's a close up of my lovely Meadow.
miniature donkey grazing on grass
And one of my adorable little Chester.
The mini-donkeys were just running all over the pastures and paddock, braying, kicking and having a good time. Here is just a short clip of their antics. This was mid-June 2015.
miniature donkey in a fly-mask
So many people ask me about these fly masks with ears. Here is a close-up of Meadow wearing hers. The donkeys and horse really do like to wear them. They can see just fine. And the ear covers prevent the little midges from filling their ears with scabs. This was early June.
miniature donkey in a grazing muzzle
Now Meadow is not so sure about this contraption. It is a grazing muzzle and this photo caused all kinds of controversy among my friends on Facebook. If you look closely, you can see that Meadow is developing a cresty neck. That is not a good condition and the vet said we shouldn't let her gain any more weight. Well, we have a very old horse that we have to supplement his feed every day, a mini-donkey who is just right, and Meadow the chow hound. How to keep them all fed correctly is a challenge. So I am getting her used to wearing this several hours a day. She can eat, drink, and breathe just fine with this on. It just slows down and restricts her eating. Kind of like when I eat with chopsticks!
Two miniature donkeys grazing in June
This is just a sweet close-up of my little darlings in early June without their masks.
two miniature donkeys with fly masks on in pasture
 And another one of them with their masks, in early June 2015.
miniature donkeys and wheelbarrow of manure
It is late May and rainfall is very short for the season. You can see how sparse the grass is and how dry the soil looks. To protect the rest of the pasture we have fenced the animals off into a small section and are feeding them hay. We are taking advantage of this time to do some weed control, liming, fertilization, and if it ever rains again, seeding. Because the animals are in a small section, I pick up manure daily. This weekend I had helpers. They kept running off with the tools and did successfully turn the wheelbarrow on its side. Lucky they are so cute!
miniature donkey with fiberglass electric fence post in mouth
We had to keep the equines off a portion of the paddock while we did some weed control, liming, and reseeding. It was too hot to just leave the barn doors closed on that side, so I put up a barrier across the doorway. It is one of the stall separators that we use (the interior of our barn is wide open and we use moveable separators to section it off as needed) that is made of hardware cloth and two by fours. I wedged it into the doorway and used a few fiberglass temporary electric fence posts to keep it propped up. I tied those on with baling twine. It was fine for a day, but the second night the donkeys must have been bored. They ATE all the baling twine and were playing with the fence posts when I went out there. Fortunately, barrier did not fall. It is big and heavy enough to have hurt them if it fell on or against them.
It is mid-May and a beautiful afternoon. Chester is playing and both of them are looking to get into mischief.
close up of donkey face with plastic container in its mouth
Chester found where I hid the container full of animal crackers and brought it to me just like a little child asking for a cookie. I use animal crackers for training because I can break them into very tiny pieces so the donkeys don't get too much sweets.
two miniature donkeys wearing fly masks
It is very early May and the insects are coming out again. So on go the fly masks. Our donkeys really appreciate these and willingly let us put them on in the morning and never try to take them off. Their ears, in particular, need protection from the flies that bite them and would leave their ears full of scabs if not protected.
brown miniature donkey grazing on grass pasture
In late April the grass is growing and the donkeys spend all their time in the pasture. Hay is forgotten because fresh grass and weeds taste so much better.
miniature donkey putting on some weight
I am getting concerned about Meadow's appetite. It is never ending and she is beginning to develop a cresty neck. That is that roll on top of her neck; it is a fatty deposit. Little jennies are particularly prone to this. I will try to find ways to increase her exercise and get her off the pasture. Otherwise more drastic measures will be in order.
two miniature donkeys behind a gate
It is early April and we are feeding our old Tennessee Walker on the other side of this gate. Since the last thing Meadow needs is grain, we have them sepatated during feeding time.
two miniature donkeys biting at gate
But we have to watch Meadow carefully because she is smart little donkey and has been known to figure out various kinds of latches before!
miniature donkey and field toys
It was early March and the grass was just starting to grow. Chester had gathered up some of his toys to play with but stopped to sample the spring fare.
miniature donkey with traffic cones
Small traffic cones purchased at home improvement stores are good for training and playing with.
miniature donkey with piece of plastic drain pipe
The piece of plastic drain tile is a favorite toy for both the mini-donkeys.
miniature donkey in the snow in north carolina
Chester does not care much for the snow and will spend days in the barn avoiding it. But after multiple snow storms in February, he finally decided he had to wander out occasionally.
 two miniature donkeys with grooming brush in their mouths
Last Saturday was a beautiful, sunny February day. I was grooming our old Tennessee Walker, Little Man, and had brushes and combs out for the job. After combing out his mane, I reached down for a small brush, but it wasn't there. A short search revealed Meadow in the paddock with the brush firmly in her teeth. But Chester wanted that brush for himself.
two miniature donkeys fighting over a brush
And a tug-of-war over the brush began.
two miniature donkeys with brush in their mouth
This went on for quite awhile. Neither was making any progress.
Two miniature donkeys fighting over a brush
Eventually Chester got a better grip on the brush than Meadow had.
two miniature donkeys and a grooming brush
And he finally won the match. His interest in it lasted about 30 seconds. After which I was allowed to reclaim the brush and continue grooming dear Little Man.
miniature donkey and a small sitting stool
miniature donkey chewing on a sitting stool
miniature donkey biting cushion on stool
miniature donkey biting on sitting stool
It is the last day of January 2015. It is bright, sunny and almost spring like; one of those rare winter days meant to be enjoyed outside because it is supposed to rain and maybe even snow tomorrow. I spent sometime grooming and making a fuss overthe mini-donkeys this morning. I sit on this little stool to be more on eye level with them (also makes it easier to hug their necks!). Whenever the stool is vacated, however, the donkeys grab it with their teeth and take it away. Chester was the culprit this morning. Looks like I am going to have to recover it before spring!
brown miniature donkey in red and white Christmas hat
Over the Christmas 2014 holiday, I got to spend more time than usual with the donkeys. They were very active and playful and enjoyed their Christmas presents which included a new orange traffic cone. Of course I had to do take the traditional "donkey in a Santa hat" pictures. Chester was quite alright with it. Cute, isn't he?
grey miniature donkey wearing red and white Santa hat
Meadow, on the other hand, wasn't so thrilled. As soon as hubby let go of her, the hat was off.
two miniature donkeys playing with traffic cones
We did a lot of playing around over the holiday. Here the two of them are just winding up for a bit of rough-housing.
two miniature donkeys running around traffic cones
They would both start running for the traffic cone, racing to beat the other to it.
two miniature donkeys racing to get to traffic cones
Chester kept beating Meadow to the cone which frustrated her, so she finally took off after him!
two miniature donkeys one laying down and one with toy
Eventually Meadown gave up on the cone and decided to lie down and...
two miniature donkeys with one taking a dust bath
take a dust bath.
two miniature donkeys eating from a food tray
A short while later they were best friends again as they shared a small dish of grain.
miniature donkey with glove in his mouth
It was the day after Thanksgiving 2014. Our boarder horse, Teddy, left the farm in the morning for cheaper pastures and our animals were subdued. So I went to spend some time with them. The donkeys were particularly affectionate and in need of attention. They were also being very cute. They kept stealing the gloves out of my back pocket. Here's a short series of photos I got of their antics. In this first shot (above) Chester realized that I caught him with my gloves!
Meadow didn't like it that Chester had a glove and she didn't, so she hollered at him.
Then she tried the "I'll be nice" approach.
Finally she realized there was another glove on the ground and picked it up. Everyone was happy for a few minutes.
Then Chester noticed that I was taking pictures and did like he always does...
walked right up to the camera to see what I was doing!
two miniature donkeys next to water trough
Here is a close-up of Chester. He has a short, kinked tail (he was born that way), a pot belly and beautiful big brown eyes. This was early fall 2014.
two miniature donkeys eating hay on the ground 
After we put up the hay in the barn in early fall 2014, the donkeys helped clean up the mess that we made. They seem to prefer hay over fresh green grass almost any day. The donkeys are about two years old here.
 two mini donkeys holding a ball 
The horse sized Jolly ball, the blue one, is really a little too big for the mini-donkeys, so when I found a smaller one at Tractor Supply, I just had to have it. As you can see, the donkeys approved of my purchase.
 two miniature donkeys with a ball  
I am so glad that I captured this picture of the two of them playiing with the big Jolly ball.
 a gray miniature donkey with a smooth summer coat 
Meadow is a very beautiful little donkey and her coat became very short and smooth this summer (2014). I thought she looked quite lovely next to the flowers.
Donkeys are very smart animals and need to be kept occupied or bad things can happen. When bored our donkeys will eat the barn, dig deep holes in the barn, drag off hoses and brushes, and chew on the horses' tails. So we always keep lots of play things in the field for them. Our daughter gave them a small traffic cone for Christmas. This is one of their favorite toys.
 miniature donkey with drain pipe in his mouth 
  Small sections of drain tile also make good toys.
 two miniature donkeys by the water trough 
 Shaggy little donkeys.
 two miniature donkeys by a gate 
We have to be very careful to latch every gate securely because the donkeys will test them daily!
 little miniature donkey being groomed
This was during the first winter with them on the farm (2013-2014). Chester loves attention and a grooming session was just the thing on this cold day. Chester is about a year old here.
The fly mask was a little too big for Chester that first summer; the floppy ears looked so cute! But he quickly learned how much more comfortable he was with the mask on during fly season and was very cooperative when we went to put it on him each morning.
 two six month old miniature donkeys on leads 
This is when we first got Chester and Meadow. Chester was six months old and Meadow was about seven months old. It was Easter 2013.

5 comments:

  1. Just found your blog. Have really enjoyed reading about your wonderful miniature donkeys. They are absolutely gorgeous and what characters they are. Must do so more reading of your blog - it's lovely. Regards, Louise S, Cheshire UK

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  2. We are about to get our first mini donkeys.
    Enjoyed this a lot
    Reading up on all I can to be the perfect mommy.

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  3. We are also in WNC and are currently donkey shopping! Where did you get your two from? And where did you find the donkey-size fly masks!?
    Thanks! They are adorable!
    Julie

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    1. Hi Julie! We got our donkeys from a neighboring farm that has many donkeys. I don't know if they have any available for sale or not; I will ask and post again if they have any available. I suggest you ask your local large animal vet if he/she knows of anyone with healthy donkeys available. There might be rescue donkeys available and you can find them on Craigslist, too, but you need to be prepared for anything when you go those routes. As for the fly masks, those are made by Cashel "fly masks with ears". I usually find the best price for them on Amazon!

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