Young Donkey - Help!

Discussion in 'Horse Health' started by Shoney, Oct 11, 2018.

  1. Shoney

    Shoney Senior Member

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    *Please note that I am calling my vet first thing tomorrow morning - She only came home yesterday and I was going to make her an appointment next week anyway but will do my best to get him out tomorrow instead*

    I went to a local sale barn (that has a decent reputation) and purchased a donkey to be a companion for my pony now that she has moved home. I ended up with a weanling. Or so they say. I was prepared to keep my future donkey lighter, no feed, grass hay, ect. This poor little thing is skinny and terrified. You can feel her ribs by just running your hand down her side. To me it feels as though she still has her baby coat - it's very fluffy and not thick or long like the other donkeys I have met.

    Her eyes are clear, no nasal discharge, no sores anywhere except for where its seems her umbilical cord would have attached. She isn't 100% tame but I was putting her in sweatshirts to keep her warm until her blanket comes and felt under her tummy. It's about the width of a quarter, maybe 3/4" tall that sticks out right where the umbilical cord would have been. It felt like a matted section of hair, but turned out to have that lump there. It was oozing puss but i squeezed a bunch out and it stopped. I will add a picture when my fiance gets home to help me take it.

    How do I put weight on a young donkey? Slowly and carefully. She will go out on pasture from about 8-6 every day. Any idea of how old she is from these pictures? I know they have very different needs than horses. I already have a good quality grass hay for her. Would a foal feed be okay? She doesn't really understand hard feed, as I tried to give her some of Shoney's equine senior (just a tiny handful) and she wouldn't touch it. She will eat the grass out in the field, though. She has a pile of hay in her stall but she mostly ignores it.

    Can she have probiotics to help her appetite? I have a wormer on hand for her but am going to wait until I talk to the vet. I am worried about her and wonder if she is really as old as they say or if she was weaned too early.

    I can get better pictures tomorrow when I have someone to help hold her, she doesn't lead/tie very well yet. In the picture with the sweatshirt, it is only an xl if that helps give size comparison on her.
     

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  2. manesntails

    manesntails Senior Member

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    Just hay and the Vet needs to give her a 5 day antibiotic shot and uniprin in her feed. You will probably need to put the antibiotic uniprin, in a handful of feed, if she'll eat it. Might need to soak a little feed and mix it in.

    When the infection is under control, get her wormed. One thing at a time.
     
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  3. Alsosusieq2

    Alsosusieq2 Senior Member

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    She's an absolute cutie. Congratulations. It think manes pretty much covered this, but I'm happy for you. She's not in that "bad" of condition, the vet will help you out. :)
     
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  4. ginster

    ginster Senior Member

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    She┬┤s a cutie!
     
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  5. Shoney

    Shoney Senior Member

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    I was assuming once we got her warm she would start eating more. She hadn't touched her hay or water by 8pm so I called the vet last night. I gave her some banamine and waited for my usual vet to call back. She perked up after about 30 minutes on the banamine and started eating and drank some water. She did pee thankfully. I think she was fighting this infection at the sale barn and didn't feel like eating there either. I am anxiously awaiting poop but if she didn't eat much for the first 36 hours I had her, then she wouldn't have much of anything to poop out. She did eat a small mash last night (per vet instruction) and nibbled on her hay. Now we are waiting for the vet to call back to set up a time to come out this morning.I am hoping to find a blanket locally since it's only going to get colder and I will need one before her ordered one comes in.

    Fingers crossed she feels better after some antibiotics today. I am absolutely in love with her already.
     
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  6. manesntails

    manesntails Senior Member

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    Once the antibiotics start working and she feels better, her real personality will come out. Don't get too complacent. Since she hasn't been handled, don't overload her with too much physical contact all at once.

    She is cute as heck~!! Read up about donkeys. They do not need highly concentrated feeds. It will colic them if you feed them as if they were horses. They are desert animals and thrive on very little low protein, low quality forage.

    So, if you give horse feed, only a small handful and low protein. Mixing half a handful of horse feed with wheat bran or muscelix, wetting it and adding your powdered antibiotics is all she needs.

    They founder and put on weight VERY easily. Less is more with Donkeys.
     
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  7. equinitis

    equinitis Senior Member

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    She does not look to be in terrible shape. She will gain weight very quickly so be very careful of what, and how much, you feed her. Like manes said, they do not need a lot of protein like a growing horse would. I like to be able to feel ribs on Norm. Can't see his ribs because of his coat, but I want to be able to feel them. My vet said I was doing a great job with him when she castrated him last week. She sees a lot of too fat donks. You just won't believe how easy it is to let them get fat. I fed Norm miniature horse feed, 1/4 lb per day, from 4 months to about 10 months. Now he gets grass hay only and low sugar treats or whole oats as treats when I am working with him.

    They don't loose their foal coats until their 2nd year sometimes. I love the curly topknot they have!

    Talk to your vet about wormers too, some donks are sensitive to one of the wormers but I can't remember off the top of my head which one. Zimectrin Gold comes to mind as a no no (something to do with the carrier though,not the medication) but I am not real sure so check with your vet. Donks and mules are usually pretty resistant to internal parasites so you might want a fecal before you de-worm her.

    It is really not likely she is cold or will need a blanket. Be careful not to over heat her!

    She is lovely! She will be a pretty girl. I am guessing a standard donkey, 9-13 hh when grown. She looks to be around 6 months old to me. Congratulations, I believe you will love having a donk!
     
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  8. Shoney

    Shoney Senior Member

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    Well we had the vet out yesterday afternoon.
    She definitely has an umbilical infection. She got an antibiotic shot for that, and gets another one on Monday.

    He thinks she might have ulcers as well from the way she was grinding her teeth. She is on Ulcerguard and is allowed to have some banamine here and there in order to perk her up and increase her appetite.His best guess was that she was weaned by being dropped at the sale barn and all of the changes are messing with her. He okayed a small amount of a foal feed (it's just about a handful) to help get her eating. She doesn't really know what to do with the hay and eating that is better than not eating at all. She's allowed to go out on the grass and was eating up on the better stuff this afternoon.

    We are definitely waiting to worm her until she is better. Same with vaccines.

    His best estimate for age is 3 months. So she's an itty bitty little thing. His estimate was around 100-150 lbs. I was totally prepared to have a fat donkey. I bought a grazing muzzle and grass hay and didn't even have a feeder for her. I'll definitely keep an eye on her weight once we get some meat on her bones to start with. She's absolutely precious. I saw a little more personality today, some attitude when I went to bring her in and actually put up a fight for her ulcerguard. That makes me happy. I like ornery beasts. She wanted to go back out this evening but I wouldn't let her as we have coyotes around. Hopefully she's on the mend now.
     
  9. equinitis

    equinitis Senior Member

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    Straw will be your friend. I by bales of straw at TSC for Norm. It allows him to eat more with less effect on his weight.
    I'm glad she is perking up. I hope you keep us updated.
     
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  10. Shoney

    Shoney Senior Member

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    She finally dropped a pile of poop! I was very excited to see it We shouldn't have to worry about her weight much until spring. I already have a grazing muzzle :D. I got first cutting basic grass hay for her so I'm hoping that will get us through the winter without many problems. I asked my hay guy for donkey hay and that's what I got.

    I got a little hee-haw when I went in to give her Ulcerguard tonight. She is definitely perking up and seems to be on the mend. I didn't give her any banamine today and still saw some more energy. I'll definitely have the vet out for a recheck in a little bit.
    Snuggled down for the night:
    [​IMG]
    Snoozing in the sun.
    [​IMG]
     

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