On an Open House Day, Justin and I visited the Donkey Sanctuary of Canada in Guelph, Ontario. It is a rescue farm for donkeys located in an outlying rural area of the city. I’ve traveled to see the donkeys and mules on several occasions in the past as well as to volunteer there, but it was Justin’s first time out to the farm. It was a beautiful Wednesday afternoon and the sun was shining brightly. It was a perfect day to visit, and there were many cars in the parking lot. It was nice to see that so many people love visiting and helping the animals!
We walked through the gates towards the barns and we already saw many donkeys roaming around. There was even one right by the gate to greet people as they entered! The donkeys have so much room to walk around the farm wherever they please. If they feel like socializing outdoors with human guests or the other donkeys, they can do so. If they feel like being up in the barn or out in the field, they can go there instead! Prior to arriving at the Donkey Sanctuary, so many of these animals were abused, neglected, or headed to slaughter. It is amazing to be able to witness them living so peacefully and happily now.
From the Donkey Sanctuary website, here is a little bit about the mission of the organization:
Since 1992, The Donkey Sanctuary of Canada has been a refuge for donkeys, mules and hinnies who have been neglected or abused, or who can no longer be cared for by their owners. The Sanctuary rescues the donkey with hooves so long it lives in constant pain and cannot walk. It saves a terrified mule shivering in a pen in a slaughterhouse. It offers a home to a much-loved donkey whose aging owners can no longer provide adequte care. At the Sanctuary, the animals are provided a welcome and often life-saving peaceful haven after years of suffering and neglect.
We walked down the main path towards one of the barns. Many donkeys were out walking around and receiving love and attention from visitors. Some of the donkeys were behind a short fence eating some hay. Some of the residents were curious about us and came over to greet us. The one in the picture above really enjoyed braying – it was really loud!
Every donkey has their story and there are nearly 100 donkeys at the sanctuary. You can read all about each individual donkey at the DSC website. You can even sponsor a donkey and visit him or her if you are fortunate enough to live close enough to Guelph! Visiting the Sanctuary is great for animal lovers of all ages. You can pet or brush the donkeys, or attend one of the scheduled talks throughout the day to learn more about these fascinating animals. Throughout the summer months, you can visit on Wednesdays or Sundays.
Of course, taking care of all of these animals costs a lot of money! All donations made to the sanctuary go towards helping the donkeys in their regular care, veterinary costs, maintaining their living space, and more. They have a list of needs on their website, as well as ways to donate or volunteer your time at the farm. Check it out if you’re interested! I like to regularly donate to the Donkey Sanctuary of Canada because I know they are such an amazing organization and they help so many farm animals in need.
While we were there, two of the donkeys became very interested in grooming each other! It was so cute. It is so sweet to see the donkeys socialize with one another! I took a video of it:
We thoroughly enjoyed our afternoon at the farm and hope that you get the chance to visit the donkeys, too!