I received an e-mail today that made me cry, made my heart ache I have been praying for this mule and his new human family and will continue to pray. We must never forget that animals just like people who are abused need time to feel safe before any form of training or education can begin. I believe animals get post traumatic stress from extreme abuse just like us humans.
Animals need to be tamed first and the human needs to stay safe, not be abused this can take lot’s of time even years. I am a home study student of Parelli as they offer the best training tools for all equine (horses, donkeys and mules) and most importantly they teach the equine personalities. I highly suggest learning this natural equine training method. Parelli home study teaches in great depth the importance of taming an equine before attempting to train.
Here is the edited question:
Hi Melody! I was thrilled when I found your website. I have a three-year old gelded mule that I purchased from a stockyard auction. He has been abused badly. I would love to talk to you , perhaps you can provide some insight. I am in Mississippi and can not locate anyone to provide assistance with his training. Thanks so much, Linda.
I am here to help you for free, due to the car accident I am not able to start my business, not able to attend Parelli. I am helping for free as my health allows me for the love of all the Donkeys, Horses and Mules in need via the website and blog. Horrific events animals and humans endure at the hand of the cruel human.
Taming First NOT Training
This magnificent equine needs to be safe, provide him with a safe environment, fresh water, medical attention if need be, NO TRAINING in the beginning it is imperative you tame him first. Please understand no animal or human can learn anything when they are living in fear, donkeys freeze when scared. Does he have an equine buddy? What is his living arrangement like now? Photos always help me to connect so if you can send me some. Send me the living arrangement and your plan to provide the best optimum care for this boy and I will do my best to help guide you.
Donkeys are visual learners the mule is half horse and half donkey – I highly suggest you take your honor horse, donkey, mule out and let the equine see them getting brushed, taking a walk for a bite of grass, picking feet. One step at a time for taming to begin, donkeys are really smart so be sure each and every time you are with them you are in the leader role and you have a plan for safety. My arena is strategically placed in front of the paddock for the donkeys to watch me training my horse the lead mare amazing how they respect me when they see her doing what I ask. smile.
Help my donkey or mule is running at me with his ears back! Donkeys and mules are very playful, their ears go back when they are in deep thought and playing when abused anything is possible, safety is most imperative when working with equine. Be careful keep your personal space safe. Jumping jacks work, yelling whoa, snapping fingers, clapping and most important tool carrying your parelli carrot stick.
Learn the difference between respect and fear. Donkeys and mules are very athletic they can kick, forward, backward and like a cow. Taming them is a necessity before attempting training. Safety is one hundred percent the most important first step, having a plan as working with any equine is dangerous. My mare can look at the donkeys and they run out of the barn, just a look this is respect not fear, Parelli is an excellent teacher to learn these important techniques. Body language is essential and timing think about all of these things before you go into the same space with your equine.
You can not make a donkey or mule do anything donkeys must respect not fear their leader learn what this means and execute your plan each and every time you are with your donkey, mule or horse. This is why a relationship formed with the human teacher and the donkey and taming is the first step to success. Donkeys and mules can learn faster with leadership, love, patience and a few small pieces of carrots or apples. Keep your training sessions short and never ever get frustrated when they don’t learn as they never learn like a horse.
Training these magnificent equine is similar to fishing you may catch a fish and you may not as you are on donkey time slow and analytical every step of the way. Keep the training sessions short each new task is no more than three or four times of teaching the task and no more than 30 – 40 minutes total in school time. Remember to end school with something the equine has mastered, stop school on a good note. Remember how hard it was to learn from a teacher in school that was not friendly and boring, very difficult to learn from this kind of teacher.
With the donkeys I am continuously amazed how I can come back to training, weeks, months later and the donkeys do not need a tune up thus they never forget the good or bad. Amazing how one day they just get what I have been attempting to teach them enjoy each and every moment you get.
Withholding Water? Never this is not training in my eyes. I highly disagree with this old school training tool, donkeys, mules and horses can colic and by the time the human realizes the donkey or mule has coliced it can be too late. Donkeys are so strong they don’t want to show any form of pain or suffering. Donkeys are donkeys they are not horses, mules are half donkey and half horse and depending on the mule they can have more attributes towards the donkey or the horse one thing is consistent they are indeed a mule.
Free information on feeding and care of Donkeys and Mules by Dr. Andy K. McLean, PHD, DVM.
GOD bless you and your family two and four-legged!