I discussed Daisy's pawing behavior with my trimmer this morning. Donkeys do paw naturally, but Daisy is doing it in an OCD manner. We actually watched her paw when tied ( standing on rubber mats) and watched her body language. She literally paws to get relaxation, her head will droop, her tongue will stick out the bottom of her lips a bit & her whole body will relax. So she's definitely doing it as a vice to ease some sort of frustration.
the problem is that she's wearing down her toes too much, if I dont figure out a way to help curb the behavior there is a good chance she'll actually hurt herself. If she grinds down her toes & gets into the hoof wall theres the chance for infections, she'll most likely end up lame or in the worst case scenario dead :(
So the plan at the moment is to get her onto pasture. I'm not sure how this is going to all work out with her food intake ( since she is on a diet), but everything in the pasture is pretty dry & dead, with maybe on little patch of green grass. I just happened to order fencing last week - because i wanted the option of having a safe area for her. She gets turned out right now but I have to keep an eye on her since there's 'stuff' around the barn & the back of the house. My fence should be here tomorrow, ideally I would like to get it up as soon as possible. This weekend I went and got some metal posts for gates, and 2 bags of concrete to set them in.
All I need now are gates! Planning on possibly making some from pallets - I've been wanting to recycle pallets forever & now is my chance. I think I'll have a strand of hot wire over the top on the ones that she'll have access to, just to keep her from eating them. LOL.
Another immediate idea was a pair of boots from her, but my trimmer talked to two other donk people & they're pretty sure she would figure out how to get them off. The other idea is to shoe her front feet, I put a request out to a farrier I spoke with earlier this year. So I don't really know anything about that yet. It least that would keep the wear down & let those toes grow out a bit.
I personally only see Daisy paw in the evenings before dinner. So there are some ideas there - feed her earlier, or feed her a meal in the afternoon if possible. Today I gave her a pound of hay @ lunch time, but I spread it all over her pen, so she would have to walk around to get to each little pile.
the other issue is pawing while tied, we have to figure out what type of correction should be used to stop that part of the issue.
the last idea is a buddy, right now I just dont have the capital to go out & buy another donkey. And from what I've found there isn't too many out there!
A donkey rescue up north may be getting in a couple more donks - so i sent out an email to foster one. It would be really nice to see her have a friend, if she still has pawing after the environment change, she'll definitely need a friend, if it isn't a donk she might get a goat or a sheep. I'd prefer a donk though so she can get some good socializing in.
I'll keep ya posted!
- I am an artist who tries different mediums. I airbrush, graphite, braiding, and now I'm obsessed with sewing. I created this blog to keep all my creations in one place. Like an online portfolio. Thanks for looking. to check out my items for sale on etsy - www.akyramoto.etsy.com
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