Melody visiting the Jennies on Mas Ass Acres farm in Sequim, Washington 2009
It’s really cold outside in the Pacific Northwest back to the high twenties at night and thirties during the day burr. I continue to work diligently to get my health back so I can ride again and enjoy my life to the maximum potential. My weeks consist of physical therapy (building core muscles, strength training), acupuncture and chiropractic care twice a week and once a week a therapeutic massage. Thank you Jesus for all of the human angels GOD has placed in my life to help me heal, get strong again and out of pain.
I pray you find the information I share to be informative and educational as most of this research took me years. In fact I created the web site after being frustrated trying to find information in one place for donkeys seems a little information here and their but I saw the need to try to make one stop shopping for humans and their equine.
I have been a Parrelli Savy club member since 2007 and it is my prayer I will heal enough to attend Parelli and become a certified Parelli equine specialist. If you own a horse, donkey or mule please learn the seven games of parelli at the minimum and never ever leave a halter on - as Parelli will teach you how to teach the equine to CATCH you!
Directly copied from the Parelli website http://www.parellinaturalhorsetraining.com/video/pat-parelli-horse-trainer The mules taught Pat the importance of reverse psychology, the principle of safety and comfort as the only real incentives, and developed in him more savvy on how to get a prey animal to “want” to perform. They also taught him about patience! In 1980, Pat founded The American Mule Association.
After thirty-two years away from equine no money available or time available for equine I was working in the business corporate world trying to find happiness and security I ended up loosing my job and was forced to retire early. Naturally after a couple of years of retirement we purchased my mare (100% horse spoiled still with her mamma) at twenty months old in 2007. Additionally we purchased Rio (nine month old mammoth donkey) and Rocket Man (mini donkey age thirteen) as donkeys go in twos! You see my husband has no experience with horses in fact he wanted nothing to do with them but donkeys well they are much easier for the beginner.
I had much to read and learn and no one in my living area trains mules and donkeys. My journey in training donkeys began as a huge challenge, rewarding, and unique. In fact every time we took our three equine out for a trail walk we were not riding as they were all too young people would stop their cars at the trail head and want a picture of Rio and Rocket Man as they could not believe that Rio was not a mule due to his mammoth donkey size. Training donkeys and mules takes a Parelli friendly game first and outstanding leadership for safety. Training a donkey or mule takes a person who loves equine and has a great respect and a clear leadership (a plan) role established as donkeys can think all the time unlike the horse and they are very strong and flexible. I highly suggest you become a savvy club member and learn to use the Parelli carrot stick study Parelli. Rio can stand on three feet and reach out with his hind leg and tap Lily my horse to tell her to move over amazing to see.
Training a Donkey or Mule is not easy it is a challenge! My personality is built by GOD for challenges and it was a no brainer to study under Mr. & Mrs. Parelli as their natural training methods work with mules and donkeys.
Take a look at some of my videos at http://www.donkeywhisperer.com. Specifically the video where my Mammoth donkey Rio is following me over the Mountain Dew barrels in our drive way http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B83HG2UlLDA&feature=fvsr before I got my arena built. This looks like no big deal to a horse owner but to folks who understand donkeys and mules minds and their psychology it is truly an event that caused me to shed a happy tear. Rio (my mammoth donkey) trusts me enough to jump over the barrel with me, donkeys are into self-preservation, most donkeys are left brain introverts.
Most people think donkeys are stubborn I politely disagree they are smart and they are not going to risk their life for anyone. Donkeys are not going to run, run and run scared as horses do when they think they are going to die. Our home video surveillance camera caught Rio and me working in our driveway and still today I am amazed with this video. This is huge and took lot’s of time and patience and studying the Parelli’s home study program the best I could.
Yesterday when I turned Rio and Lily out into the arena I observed Rio pushing the mountain dew barrels with his nose, I know he is thinking about how Lily plays the circling game and jumps the barrels. I know it is only a matter of time before he learns this trick! Heck he can open his barn door no problem if not locked and I did not teach him that he learned by visualization watching us open the door. It is my opinion that Donkeys demand to be trained with the love, clear leadership and best respect and be careful when considering their moods in training move back to something the donkey has mastered and come back to the training he/she is avoiding another day.
I believe the best person to train a donkey or mule is the owner who is in a healthy relationship with the equine, sending mules and donkeys off to a trainer does not work. Donkeys and mules will work for the human they respect and admire, hard words I know but it is the truth.
“Horses dream of being trained the way a donkeys demands to be trained.” Donkeys are on Donkey time and they make the human slow down and live in the moment. If you are the kind of trainer of a donkey or mule that gets obsessed with tasking, drilling etc. Love, Leadership, Respect, Clear Boundaries, a plan, works with donkeys and a few carrots every once in a while. Teach the equine to accept the carrot with manners for example I have taught Lily to turn her head a way from me and then I will give her the carrot, no pushing into me or trying to intimidate me to get the treat.
Thank you Mr. & Mrs. Parelli for making the training available to anyone in the world via your home study and videos online after becoming a Parelli member.
http://www.lovelongears.com/about_mules.html American Mule Association web page
Here is a couple of my favorite photos of Rio (Mammoth donkey) playing with the tarp, he started out afraid of it and now look at him play!
GOD bless you and your family two and four legs!