This may belong in another area but I will start it here....
I am in need of a pasture pet to keep my lovely draft horse company. This draft is a saint and has been a perfect babysitter for my weanlings, yearlings or any of my horses that were in between jobs. In the near future his babysitting services will no longer be needed and I want to give him some Company. I do NOT want another horse and DO want something low maintenance as well as cute, easy to handle and all around fun to look at. I am considering a mini donkey and would love to hear any comments from people who are familiar with the "breed". Any and all info would be greatly appreciated.
Never ever would I keep a mini donk with a draft horse. one little mistake, no matter how gentle he is, could kill them, and (no offense to the nice ones), most mini donks, like mini horses, are spoilt lil asses. Because they are smaller, a lot of people don't take the time to make sure they know the basices (leading, tying, not being an annoying little ass, farrier, etc). 2 other downsides, some donks really, really hate horses.. and some horses hate donkeys.
If you want something that is low maitenance, I'm sure there is a rescue that needs a home for an air-fern pony that can't be ridden but is adorable.. or a mule that is closer to horse size.. (and some are really cute). I would definetely make sure one i get is used to horses though.
Well, I will have to disagree with DandyMatiz, since I have a mini mule out with my approaching-draft-size warmblood (1,500 lbs when he last got weighed at the vet clinic -- the mini mule is guesstimated at 500 lbs). They get along great. They were introduced the day I brought both of them home from separate places, and I kept them separated but next to one another at first. Then after they were used to each other, let them in together in a safe area (not too small, and no where anyone could be cornered) while under observation -- just as I would if they were two horses being turned out together for the first time.
I have no worry about him (big horse) hurting her (mini mule). She is too quick and smart. He chases her sometimes and she kicks and squeals and that is about the extent of it. She steals food from him -- even pulls his feed pan away while he is still eating it. If he gets really irritated, you might see the ears back and lunge, but that is it.
I do have to be careful of founder as the minis are prone to that. So sometimes the horse can go on the grass while the mini mule stays in the dry paddock. But as long as they can see each other, they are fine. She doesn't eat much (mostly what she steals from him!), but does require similar maintenance as far as shots, wormer (you use less since it is weight-based), and farrier. She does a lot less damage to the pasture than a full sized horse or even pony would, which is a good thing here in the wet PNW.
It may not be the same since I'm unfamiliar with mini-donkey's but I just recently acquired a mini to keep my 17H gelding company. They get along quite nicely and even when my big one wants to play, my little guy has the ability to run into a stall with a stall guard (he goes under). Although, he usually stands his ground with my big guy. Here's a pic of the two of them together.
Mine are mostly separated but during the day, I will let the little guy out so the two can share the paddock. My big gelding gets extremely upset when I take the mini off the property. Good Luck! I just wanted to share my story.
"The Horse: Friendship without envy, beauty without vanity, nobility without conceit, a willing partner, yet no slave."