Perhaps you are new to donkeys and at first your donkey was quiet and nice and then all of a sudden the donkey started getting pushy. Yes donkeys when scared are introverted usually not always but can be really quiet and stand scared with new things. Donkeys can canter like a horse, trot, and walk like a horse. But never think a donkey is a horse as they are not a horse a donkey is a donkey.
Both of our donkeys Mammoth Rio and Mini Rocket Man run and play with one another with their ears flat back they are thinking and playing. Yes Rio can come running at me when I have a treat with his ears back or when he is going out to his wooded pasture for a little brush eating.
What should I do when my donkey comes running at me with his/her ears back, teeth showing?
First be safe and say Whoaa, wave your arms in front of you to stop them. I am a student of Parelli I use my carrot stick to keep a safe distance if I am with any equine I feel nervous around. This is not a tool to hurt the equine but a safe way to keep their distance and slow down when approaching me. With my equine I use my voice and if need be I will throw my hands up in the air to stop them, clap my hands anything to stop the incorrect behavior. Never run from a horse, donkey or mule and never turn your back, teach your equine to keep “two eyes looking at you, just like the ocean the human must respect the equine and stay in the leadership role at all times without abuse, never turn your back on the equine.” Working with Donkeys, Horses and Mules (equine) can be dangerous so stay safe and enjoy your equine as they are gifts from GOD.
Never give a treat when the equine is pushing you to give it. Give the treat when they are relaxed and have earned the treat, calm and respectfully. My horse must turn her head away from me to get a treat this helps her think before trying to bully the treat out of my hand. Lot’s of ways you can get your timing ready to teach the equine to receive the treat use your creativity to plan ahead and teach them to accept the treat. All of my equine come to me when called without a food treat. They get the physical, mental and emotional treat of me loving on them, brushing them, talking to them, picking their hooves and taking them for a walk.
Remember they can not kick you or bite you if your timing is great, they are looking to see if you are a leader or a follower, remember each time you are with your equine you are the human leader, you have the human mind put your cell phone away, job away, kids away and just be in the moment with your equine. I say “You must be plugged into your equine to stay safe and be a great leader.”
Try to think of this as an invisible string between you and the equine you are connected together for the time you enter into their world. The rest of the world is not important only that you stay safe and do not get hurt and that you teach your equine how to fit into our human world. Remember each equine has their own unique personality.
A leader stands like a leader, walks like a leader, has a plan. A leader is always thinking of what is next the donkey is looking for a great human leader. Life is easier when the animals are positive their human will provide constancy in their life i.e., food, clean water, loving, massages, pick out hooves, and talk to them. Horses, donkeys and mules will never ever tell your life secrets but they are happy to hear everything you want to share with them.
Remember as the leader you determine when they come out of gate, you determine when they come out of the barn and when they go in. I like to test my equine to see if they are listening to me I do not open the door and let them out. I make them whoaa and wait a few seconds to minutes before pointing and walking out. When going back to their barn they are to turn around and face me so I can take the halter off. I pick their hooves out each and every day with no halter on while they are eating their hay it is like brushing our human teeth the hooves are the most important thing to keep up with. No hooves no donkey, no horse, no mule. This is the perfect time to ensure I do not have any doctoring to do on them look and feel their bodies and check for outchies. After all I am their human leader and I am their human momma.
If they are really excited I back them into their barn, paddock, arena or pasture this helps them think and slow down. Me backing Rio Rio out of the horse trailer in 2009.
Remember it’s easy to get into the routine of feeding and rushing thru the process. I highly suggest you do not do this ever, stay plugged in, stay safe, stay alert to manage health concerns before they become a serious vet bill. Put the safest fencing up you can afford and if you can afford to put video surveillance up use it as it is a wonderful tool. Remember all equine are looking for a great human leader, be the best human leader you can be and I promise you the equine will reward you with amazing gifts. Equine are gifts from GOD be grateful for them as each day is indeed precious and fragile.
GOD bless you and your family two and four-legged!