The Great Escape


The donkeys have loved living outside since we transferred their feeding and sleeping area from the stable to a shelter just outside the cottage. It’s been lovely seeing their little faces looking over the garden wall at us in the morning and their “Heehaw” to remind us its breakfast or cuddle time. Obviously, if the weather gets too bad they will return to the indoor stable at night.

Anyway, I was wondering whether animals have an ability to sense when something is about to happen. You know, like a vet coming to cut your balls off…. We have been talking about Finn needing to be castrated as soon as he is old enough for obvious reasons but the vet said he was too young when he was last here.

So, Finn and Doris have been living happily outside exploring their new field. I noticed Finn starting to, let’s say, wanting a ‘piggy back ride’ from Doris but he didn’t quite know what to do. I popped into the vets a few weeks ago and confirmed his age and it was agreed that he could ‘get the snip’ now. However, it depended on the weather. Who knew that it could be too hot or too cold to have one’s crown jewels removed. Imagine the NHS waiting list in the North East of England for similar ‘human’ operations. It’s always too cold there. Blimey, there mustn’t be such a thing in places like Russia in the winter with temperatures as low as -50.

We had to wait for the temperature to be just right, with regular phone calls to the vets to consider the forecast. To make matters worse. Doris must have come into season as she began to act really weird around Finn. The poor lad didn’t know what was going on.  Flirting in the donkey world is rather different to us humans. Or, alternatively I have got it completely wrong for all these years. However, I do vaguely remember some odd behaviours in the nightclubs as a teenager but I just assumed they were wrecked due to vast amounts of cheap plonk…. Yeah, so Doris began to place herself in front of Finn, making uncomfortable groans whilst foaming at the mouth.

It was a race against time to ‘bag the balls’ and I couldn’t bear to separate them as they get stressed if not with the other. Finally, it was confirmed. Thursday this week, the deed would be done. A sigh of relief for us. We looked out the window at them on the field…… Oh dear….. It seems that Finn figured out what to do. He finally got the ‘piggy back ride’ he’d been waiting for!!! It’s like he could hear his ‘Manhood’ clock ticking. Something definitely happened as Doris has no interest in that game anymore and the flirting has completely stopped. Oh well, what will be will be, but we still planned on going ahead with the procedure.

Wednesday evening. Forecast rain. “we will have to bring them in tonight” Stuart said. “So that he is dry and clean for the snip tomorrow”. They weren’t keen on coming in but they did and this was rewarded with a few oats and some fresh hay.

Thursday Morning. Vet definitely coming today as the weather is perfect. I think Finn knew something was going to happen. I was at work this morning so I quickly jumped in the shower. I had a lovely shower thinking about the arts and crafts that I’ve tried out recently and what else I’d like to try out. I get out the shower, dry off and shout “Charlie, bathrooms free” like every morning. No answer. I shout louder “Charlie get out of bed; the shower is free”. No answer. Wrapped in a towel, I walk into his bedroom to get him up but he’s not there, not in the toilet, not in the kitchen or anywhere in the cottage. I panic as the alpacas are due to give birth anytime. I pull on some clothes and make my way down to the stables.

Alpacas were all fine but no sign of the donkeys. Confused, I turned and saw Stuart in the van and Charlie looking rather flustered and then Finn and Doris looking VERY sheepish. Apparently, Stuart had gone into the stable to clean it out and hadn’t closed the door properly and the gate to the farm was open too. Finn made a run for it and Doris followed. He attempted to get into his field but that gate was closed. So off they went down the lane too quick to catch. Stuart shouted me for help but I hadn’t heard as I was in the shower. Finn met horses, sheep, cows and another donkey on his adventure to escape the vet. By the time I got there, Finn was back and simply nudged me with his nose as if to say “sorry mum, I’m in trouble aren’t I”. We got them safely back in the stable, charlie got ready and off we went to work and school.

Charlie and I chuckled in the car as I said “imagine if that scene had a soundtrack”. Picture it: – Me happily getting ready humming to Norah Jones; calm and peaceful. Cut to outside – Keizer Chiefs ‘I Predict a Riot’ with Finn running down the lane and Stuart and Charlie being dragged along; Chaotic and stressful. I had no idea of the events that were unfolding just outside in the yard.

I got home about 1.30pm. Doris stood by the stable door. Finn laying on the floor. He heard my voice and struggled to get up. Eventually he got up on all four legs and simply rested his head in my hands. He didn’t move as he just needed his Mum. Completely off his face, sore and probably no idea what just happened. Ball-less, crown jewels stolen, balls bagged, snipped, castrated…..


Poor Finn recovering

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