JANUARY started well with plenty of dry weather and cold, but sunny days and the donkeys spent a lot of time out of doors, however this didn’t last! The second half of the month has been wet, wet, wet and this is due to last a bit longer yet. The river Piloña, which runs below the finca and alongside the main road, has become a raging torrent, swelling and bursting its banks in places until it looks more lake Lake Piloña!
All this rain may improve the water levels in the reservoirs (apparently, they were only at around 50% capacity before this) but it is not good news for the donkeys who now have to spend a lot more time indoors. This means that they get extra cuddles and grooming and have easy access to dry bedding, food, salt licks and water. They can also listen to music all day long.
Donkeys are a desert animal and they like dry, warm conditions best. Many people treat them much as they would do a horse and leave them outside in all conditions, sometimes without any shelter at all. This is very bad for a donkey as they do not have a double layered waterproof coat like a horse does. Rain and snow seeps through to a donkey’s skin causing him to become freezing cold and he may, as a result, get skin infections or become more seriously ill.
A donkey needs shelter from bad weather at all times of the year and particularly so in winter. He or she also needs an area of concrete or other hard surface to stand on so that he does not get mud fever which will affect his lower limbs. Look after your donkey well and he or she will live happily and healthily for many years to come.