Thinking About Health Concerns of Donkeys and Mules

Health Concerns of Donkeys and Mules

Working with donkeys and mules takes training to an entire new level. Donkeys have photographic memories. Mules are half horse and half donkey meaning some mules will be more like a donkey and some more like a horse.  Not every mule is going to make it to the Grand Canyon. What’s the big deal? Horses are flight equine. Donkeys are seriously smart and into self-preservation. All equine have personalities just like people extroverted more go than whoa. Introverted more of a deep thinker and more whoa than go.

Donkey – Equus Asinus or Ass

Three sizes


Standard or burro

Mammoth Donkey

JackThe term used for the male of the ass species.

JennetPronounced JEN-et, it is the correct term for the female of the species. The most commonly used term is jenny.

BurroA word taken directly from Spain. It means the common, everyday working donkey found in Spain and Morocco. Many people call a wild donkey a burro in the Pacific Northwest.

Donkey sizesDonkeys come in all shapes and sizes ranging from the Miniature Mediterranean 28 inches to Mammoth 16’2 hands. The ears of a donkey are much longer than the horse.

Mule – The mother is a horse and the dad is a donkey. Mules are Usually sterile.

Hinny – The mother is a donkey and the dad is a horse. The death rate is high when trying to breed this way. 

Female mule – Also known as a Molly.

Health Concerns

Diet is number one in the U.S.A. Donkeys evolved from the desert meaning they are seriously easy keepers. The overweight donkey is prone to laminits, colic, founder, hoof problems, abscesses, fat deposits. I.E., Neck crests and breaks. Death is final all due to poor diet. Donkeys must live on a dry pasture for the majority of their day. Donkeys will eat themselves to death if given the chance. Never feed donkeys alfalfa, oats, grass full-time grazing, bread, grass clippings. A safe reward for your donkey is a bite of a carrot. A bite. Never feed apples, pears etc., to your donkey. Donkeys evolved from the desert think about what is in the desert.  Donkeys are seriously Easy Keepers.

Fecal samples are a must to prevent worms. Donkeys must have vet checks and regular hoof trimming just like the horse when living in domestication.


Donkeys gestation is twelve to thirteen months. Vet care is a must if you think your donkey is pregnant get a vet check do not guess.

Donkeys are stoic – Meaning donkeys will never show pain until it is too late. Be sure to not wait too long to get medical attention as your donkeys life is depending on you.


The Donkey Whisperer Farm trains the owner or caretaker to train the donkey via our video training series Donkey 101 and Donkey 102. Take Melody Johnson to the farm with  you via your smart device. Each training program has a written PDF to print out and take to farm with you. We train the owner or caretaker to train the donkey worldwide using resistance free methods. Select OUR STORE to purchase donkey halter/lead lines, donkey training stick and string and our Donkey Training Video Series.


 Introducing Donkey 102 E-Training Video Series

We are proud to announce our new Donkey 102 E-Training Video Series now available to all students who have purchased and practiced our Donkey 101 Online Training Course. Donkey 102 E-Training Video Series is for intermediate students and takes an in-depth look into donkey personality, herd mentality, the rescued and traumatized donkey, how to pick up the front and back feet and various other problem solving techniques.

Donkey 102 E-Training Video Series also launches our new Donkey Whisperer Farm Training Tool a high quality, ergonomically designed fiberglass stick and string for desensitizing and working intimately with your donkey. It is an essential tool for training your donkey to pick up his/her front and back feet and for addressing behavioral issues such as, pushing, crowding, bullying and refusing to come and lead. The DWF Training Tool Stick and String is mandatory for Donkey 102 and is the key to being a Fair Leader and building a foundation of trust and respect with your donkey.

Each Donkey 102 E-training Video Series includes our Donkey Whisperer Farm Training Tool Stick and String. If you have a Miniature Donkey please purchase the course with the 3ft DWF Training Tool Stick and String. If you have a Standard/Mammoth Donkey please purchase the course with the 4ft DWF Training Tool Stick and String. Our DWF Training Tool Stick and String comes in Royal Blue and Deep Purple. Each donkey 102 E-Training Video Series also includes a PDF with step by step bullet points for you to refer to as you view the training videos.

Both Donkey 101 and Donkey 102 E-Training Video Series teaches YOU to train your donkey. A third party trainer cannot help your donkey. Only you can train your donkey because you are the one who is caring for your donkey, sharing life with your donkey and building a strong foundation of trust and respect with your donkey. A third party trainer may gain the respect of your donkey, but he/she comes and goes. As the owner and caretaker, you don’t come and go. You are your donkey’s polestar, so it is you that must gain your donkey’s respect, it is you that must become your donkey’s Fair Leader.

We hope you will take the next step in building a partnership with your donkey. Our vision at the Donkey Whisperer Farm is to teach you, the owner/caretaker, to train your donkey and to provide the tools and education to better the life of your donkey. A large percentage of donkeys that end up at shelters, auctions and slaughter houses have been abandoned because they were difficult to handle or could not be trained.
Our vision is that EVERY donkey find its forever home. Our prayer is that your donkey stays with you forever.

Once purchased, each participant will receive a Welcome E-mail within 24 hours of your purchase. Your DWF Training Tool Stick and String will arrive seperately in the mail. The e-mail will include a link to the Donkey 102 PDF and a link to the password protected Donkey 102 E-Training Video Series. Please add to your address book to ensure your Welcome E-mail does not go to spam.
Donkey 102 contains 16 Videos with over three hours of training content by trainer Melody Johnson.
The Donkey 102 E-Training Video Series Curriculum is listed below:


1. Introduction
2. Making a Commitment to Your Donkey
3. Knowing the Signs of Stress and Fear in Your Donkey
4. Donkey Personality: Introvert or Extrovert?
5. Understanding Herd Mentality
6. The Rescued or Traumatized Donkey
7. Endorphins Versus Pain
8. Teaching Your Donkey to Tie and Stand
9. Preparing Your Donkey for the Farrier/Veterinarian
10. Blanketing Your Donkey
11. The New DWF Training Tool Stick and String
12. When Your Donkey Does Not Respect You as a Leader
13. Picking Up Your Donkey’s Front Feet
14. Picking Up Your Donkey’s Back Feet
15. Having Fun with Games and Obstacles
16. Conclusion: Your Donkey is Waiting For You!



Donkey Whisperer Farm E-Training 102 Video Series is due to release the end of July. We are working on the editing and final takes. Our Donkey 102 E-Training Series will be for intermediate students and will be addressing deep issues. Here is a taste of what is to come!

1. Teaching Your Donkey to Pick up the Front and Back Feet
2. Knowing the Signs of Stress and Fear
3. Donkey Personality
4. Understanding Herd Mentality
5. Rescued and Traumatized Donkey
6. Training with Endorphins
7. Teaching Your Donkey to Tie and Stand
8. Preparing for the Farrier or Veterinarian
9. The New DWF Training Tool


Watch for the release the end of July at

Be sure you have completed Donkey 101 Online Training Series in order to advance to Donkey 102.







Select Our Store to order your perfect fitting donkey halter/lead line and DONKEY 101 E-TRAINING Series. Donkey 102 is coming out early July 2018 with our new fiberglass stick and string. 3ft for mini donkeys. 4ft for standard donkeys, burros and Mammoth donkeys. We are excited to teach you how to train your donkey to pick up the feet and much, much more.

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