Dad, Mom and I have been staying in Antigua these past few days in a villa. We will be sailing a new boat in Antigua for 2 weeks starting this Saturday. We are waiting for our friends from Wisconsin, the Pellinos, and both of my sisters to come out to the boat. I’m very excited. In the meantime, we have rented a car for the last 4 days and have gone to some pretty cool places on the island.
The coolest place that we went to was the Donkey Sanctuary. The Humane Society runs the Donkey Sanctuary and does a great job. They take care of over 160 donkeys. The reason why the Sanctuary is here is because Antigua has a large population of wild donkeys left over from the sugar plantation days. Donkeys are originally from Asia and were brought to these big plantations because they can carry double their weight.
Donkeys are the smartest/funniest animals. They hang around all day wandering around. They always have the same expression on their face. We found out quickly that donkeys love to be brushed and sometimes they just follow you around. Donkeys on average live to 50 years old. So if I came back there in 20 to 30 years most of them would still be alive. They are creatures of habit, which means they want to get fed at the same time every day. When we were there, they didn’t get fed on time so they made a giant racket. One of the reasons I loved the Sanctuary so much was because there we so many characters. One donkey named Charlie came out of nowhere one night to the Sanctuary and let himself in. He is one of the donkeys who just wanted to be brushed. Another, named Mary Anne, bumps into you if you don’t give her attention. But I think my favorite was a donkey named Stevie. He got hit by a car and lost his vision a few years back, but he still walks around like nothing happened. Whenever you want to pet him you have to say hi Stevie, he pretends he can see you then lets you pet him. He was named after Stevie Wonder.
Another cool thing about the Sanctuary is that they have rescue dogs that they take care off. Some of the dogs are so nice and want you to pet them. We came back to the Sanctuary a second day and Dad and I walked all 20 dogs while Mom loved on the donkeys. There were some dogs who were excellent walkers and some that would pull you to the ground and drag you if they saw another animal. But over all, it was really nice to walk them. We had a great time in the Donkey Sanctuary but it wouldn’t nearly have been as cool if it weren’t for Carol, the supervisor.
Mom Carol and I
Carol is so sweet and loves what she does. Every morning she comes in and works. And every morning the donkeys wait for her to say “good morning Amy,” “good morning July,” “good morning Ringo,” and then they go back to doing what they do. And if she doesn’t say good morning to everyone, the donkeys just wait. “The donkeys,” she said, “are my children.” Each one just wants to be around her and other donkeys. Whenever the donkeys yell at her for not feeding them right on schedule, she yells settle down to whoever is making all the noise. The Sanctuary has 160 donkeys and if it weren’t for the hard working people who work there, most of those donkeys would be dead or very unhappy.
We are so lucky that we have the Donkey Sanctuary and other places that animals like donkeys and dogs can be safe and can be loved. This is the Link to the Donkey Sanctuary.
Dad walking a shy dog named foxy Mom with donkeys
Feeding time At Sanctuary