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  #1  
Old 01/19/11, 03:18 PM
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Unhappy Donkeys in the cold

I was wondering I just bought 2 donkeys at an auction, I am really worried about them right now because its raining ice and its going to start snowing plus its windy I have not been able to get them in with my horses yet because I have to work with them one of my mares is pretty bossy and the donkeys are pretty skitish so I cant get near them yet anyways they do not have shelter they are in the middle of my yard in a pen theres a few windblocks thats keeping them out of the direct wind but it still worries me. Can donkeys handle being out in the cold without any protection? I just do not know what to do, please any advice would be great.

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  #2  
Old 01/19/11, 03:22 PM
 
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Can you add a temporary roof to one of the windbreaks? Maybe some kind of lean-to.

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  #3  
Old 01/19/11, 03:35 PM
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Unhappy

I don't have anything to do that with the wind block is a shed and a garage. All I have are tarps. The roads are to bad to go anywhere, I dunno what to do I feel so bad.

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  #4  
Old 01/19/11, 04:16 PM
 
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Put them in the garage?

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  #5  
Old 01/19/11, 05:06 PM
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Wind + icy water equals hypothermia...I would put them in the garage. Whatever mess they make can be cleaned up, but you will feel terrible if they go down and need a vet.

Could you attach a large tarp to the side of a building and run it out to 2 poles or tee-posts as a lean-to type roof??

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  #6  
Old 01/19/11, 05:23 PM
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Jill has a great idea. I actually made an extra stall out of the overhang of my barn with tarps stapled to the barn itself. I had three horses, two stalls, and one of the horses was really old and infirm. I left him the tarped part, left it like that for the entire winter. It was noticeably warmer in there, and the tarps protected from all wetness. They were the heavy canvas type, so no fear from flapping tarps. Durng exceptionally bad weather, I stalled two and left good old JD out in the bigger enclosed area, they were right next to each other the whole time. Lots of hay for everyone, they were happy as can be.

If you really can't get them out of the weather, lots and lots of hay.

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  #7  
Old 01/19/11, 05:48 PM
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This is Ella the Jenny. She hated the rain, cold and snow.. would shiver up a storm.
She would bellow at me non stop until she got her mid weight waterproof turn out. She would help me put it on for her and heave a big happy sigh once it was on.



Many donkey's can't handle freezing rain and snow.

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  #8  
Old 01/19/11, 06:15 PM
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I put up a tarp on one side and I am going to put a roof on it when I get some help tonite, thanks for all the advise and I forgot to say the temperature here is about 35 degrees so I don't no if that makes a difference or not but I thought I would mention it.

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  #9  
Old 01/19/11, 06:43 PM
 
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A lot of people dont realize this, but donkeys DO NOT do cold. They are designed for hot weather, not cold. When its really windy donkeys will actually stand out of the wind and refuse to eat unless hay is brought to them. Mine have windbreaks, and shelters depending on where they are.

That temp normally wouldn't bother a donkey, but ad rain and wind and its bad. Mine are ok in -40 with no blanket as long as they can get out of the wind. Obviously no rain at that temp! loL!

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  #10  
Old 01/20/11, 03:34 PM
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My BLM (from North Dakota) donkey must be the exception ! He doesn't mind the cold at all . He does have a loafing shed he can go into . I never cater to the animals , they can come out and eat or I guess they'll just miss a meal . LOL They all ,always come out no matter what the weather .

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  #11  
Old 01/20/11, 04:41 PM
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Red face

Well I put up a homemade lean to with a tarp and a panel and it worked they go in and out of it and I fed them in it last night but they chose not to stay in it so at least I tried maybe they like the cold lol.

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  #12  
Old 01/20/11, 04:49 PM
 
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35 degrees just doesn't sound that cold to me. Cattle, horses, and mules survive in much much colder temperatures without shelter. I've got a run in for my horse and mule, and they would rather be out in the open, even at night when the temperatures fall to near zero.

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  #13  
Old 01/20/11, 06:00 PM
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Zero..............I wish. -45 out with the windchill right now.

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  #14  
Old 01/20/11, 06:04 PM
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I have been known to put oil on my horses. Just rubbed it in my hands and wiped it on real lightly. But this has to be done before they get wet. It will help them shed rain longer. Freezing rain is the only thing I have to worry about for them would rather have snow for sure!

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  #15  
Old 01/20/11, 11:16 PM
 
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I can only speak for my own donkeys -- miniature, standard and Mammoth. They grow/shed their coat for whatever the weather is. Never had any problems. Like all my stock, they're not confined but roam free within the perimeter fence and find their own comfort zones.

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  #16  
Old 01/21/11, 06:26 AM
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I too have three mini donkeys. One is 6 months old. They have a shed but often are soaked with ice icicles hanging off their eyelashes. They seem to be ok. Lots of hay keeps the internal furnace going.

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  #17  
Old 01/21/11, 02:41 PM
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If you're fork feeding, it's important to adjust your feed during cold weather.

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  #18  
Old 01/21/11, 02:52 PM
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or just bring him in the house.
Charley Says hi.

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  #19  
Old 01/21/11, 02:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rogo View Post
I can only speak for my own donkeys -- miniature, standard and Mammoth. They grow/shed their coat for whatever the weather is. Never had any problems. Like all my stock, they're not confined but roam free within the perimeter fence and find their own comfort zones.
but you do live in the Arizona desert. Not a place known for it's freezing rain.
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  #20  
Old 01/21/11, 06:01 PM
 
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=== but you do live in the Arizona desert. Not a place known for it's freezing rain. ===


The desert can be warm in the winter during the day, but you can freeze your butt off at night. There are times we go below freezing at night and some days aren't so warm.

Granted, the critters aren't piled over with snow where I live, but there's areas here that are. I've been told the snow is an insulator and keeps them warm. Wouldn't work for THIS human! -LOL-

I have loafing sheds (3 sides and a roof) and the critters can get out of the weather if they choose to.

When the winter coats start growing in, I know just what kind of winter we're going to have. Our winters have been getting colder every year and their winter coats have been getting thicker and thicker every year.

I'd like my old Arizona back.

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  #21  
Old 01/21/11, 06:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Rogo View Post
=== but you do live in the Arizona desert. Not a place known for it's freezing rain. ===


The desert can be warm in the winter during the day, but you can freeze your butt off at night. There are times we go below freezing at night and some days aren't so warm.

Granted, the critters aren't piled over with snow where I live, but there's areas here that are. I've been told the snow is an insulator and keeps them warm. Wouldn't work for THIS human! -LOL-

I have loafing sheds (3 sides and a roof) and the critters can get out of the weather if they choose to.

When the winter coats start growing in, I know just what kind of winter we're going to have. Our winters have been getting colder every year and their winter coats have been getting thicker and thicker every year.

I'd like my old Arizona back.
Lol..I know, I used to live there. We were in the desert for 9 years, 1 year north of Flagstaff. The only real reason I worried about shelter was protection from the sun in summer. (Though they did need a place to get out of the snow in FLagstaff)
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  #22  
Old 01/21/11, 08:41 PM
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I lived in San Diego for 4 years, very different kind of clime than the NW.
Hot during the day and in the winter very cold but a dry cold.
Only rained 3 days the 4 years we were there, warm rain at that. One xmas the slightest dusting of snow that passed quickly.

Desert areas don't have the super heavy rain, then a hard freeze at night and lasting for days. Add some snow and Donkeys can have issues.
Different areas of the country, specially the very wet areas and those with super cold, can be hard on many donkeys. No matter how much you feed them.

As I said... Ella let her opinions be know quite loudly. ;O)

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  #23  
Old 01/22/11, 08:01 AM
 
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Horses are most comfortable at around 30-40 degrees, however that's if they're dry. Soaking wet to the skin doesn't let the air into the coat to act as an insulator. There are other factors as well: how heavy the coat, is the horse muddy (the hair can't loft), how used to the cold it is, etc. I use non-insulated rain sheets- they block wind, and keep them dry.

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  #24  
Old 01/22/11, 10:12 AM
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That is why I have "run ins" so the animals can if they choose to that is get in out of the weather. i am not forcing them in, and besides I have no doors fro my run ins even though they are really barns. So my donkeys when I have had them do not get any blankets, nor did my miniature horses, nor does the small Shetland I have now. I don;t even own a blanket.

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  #25  
Old 01/29/11, 11:28 PM
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This is what I have to add to this topic... I am from the coldest part of MT. Hardly a tree to be found for hundreds of miles. I live in the Northern Plains. Wind most days of the week are the rule, not the exception. I own two donkeys that share much room with a longhorn steer, also originating from Southern climates. I will say this in my situation. Though I have a shed and/or wind breaks for most of my animals around my house, excepting my commercial cattle herd which have next to nothing, my donks and thin-skinned steer can take more bitter cold and crappy elements (such as soaking cold rain) than you give them even partial credit for. I'm gonna tell you right now, these larger hoofed animals are TOUGH!!! Ya, maybe some originated in the warmer climates, but for some God-known reason, they can survive some of the worst weather that we could ever be expected of them with almost seemingly ease! Humans are wimps, can't stand a temp fluctuation without making sure our neighbors in the next state know about it. Has anyone ever noticed that a typical donkey gets a winter coat in Northern latitudes? You can take a Kentucky slick-coat horse and ship him to the Hi-line of MT... and the very first winter, that spoiled old horse will have a rough long haired coat he's enjoying whiles he hauling hooves around the pasture in -30 temps! Give the donkeys what you can in way of comfort, but please realize, that you shouldn't loose sleep over such a thing. Large animals get such little credit from us humans, that it's rediculous. My donks and steer have been through -48 actual air temps before the wind started to blow. They should be frozen standing up according to many of you. Don't worry so much about cold, nor eve to much about freezing rain, but keep your focus on full bellies and a constant supply of water.

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