Calling all donkey owners

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Companions . . . Pim Allen with her two donkeys Hoti (left) and Travis. PHOTO: JESSICA WILSON

They’re mischievous, like to play-fight and chase each other.

They are also “absolutely lovely animals” that need companions.

That is why Pim Allen is putting the call out to fellow donkey owners in the hopes of starting a new group.

Dr Allen, of Chain Hill, has two donkeys and wants to meet other owners keen to share resources and experiences and take part in activities with their animals.

She will hold the group’s first meeting this month and has already had interest from donkey owners in Balclutha and Milton.

Donkeys formed strong bonds with other animals, she said.

“I couldn’t move either of my donkeys out of the paddock and leave the other one behind, because they would just kick up a big fuss and probably kick the shelter down,” she said.

Dr Allen bought her pets three years ago, one day apart, so they would not be alone.

Hoti, who is 15 years old, was moved into the paddock with his horse companion but quickly forgot about his friend once Travis (4) arrived.

“Hoti and his horse friend were sort of standing together, we opened the back of the float, Hoti took one look at Travis and went ‘That’s a donkey’ and rushed over .. to Travis and they’ve been like that ever since.”

“They have really been great mates ever since.”

While Hoti and Travis are trained to get into their float and touch their noses to a tennis ball on request, they still cause trouble from time to time.

“If I .. clean up their paddock and I take the wheelbarrow in, Travis will wait until it’s almost full and come up while my back’s turned and tip it over.”

Last year, when they were in a paddock close to the house, Hoti managed to open a sliding gate to the patio and let Travis on to it to eat all the raspberries, she said.

“So they’re really mischievous. They’re very bright.”

For more information about the group, contact Pim Allen on 021 836-8701 or copim@xtra.co.nz.