We happen to get this question all the time! Donkeys are VERY sweet and loving animals and they will follow you everywhere. Some people love dogs, but wonder why would you ever get a donkey? However, donkeys are just like dogs! They love to play with old boots, give donkey hugs and love treats. (Our donkeys try to follow us inside!) You can train them just like you train horses! They are so kind and gentle, yet people often assume that donkeys just kick for no reason and they are so "stubborn". Donkeys in fact, are not actually stubborn at all and are usually smarter than horses. Due to their survival instinct, they think deeply about things before they do it, to make sure that what they are being asked to do will not in turn cause them danger. This is why donkeys live so long in the wild, because they assess situations as they come. If something scares them, they freeze, whereas horses have been known to unexpectedly jet off and end up hurting themselves. Donkeys are such an incredible species, but sadly, they are dying at a devastating rate. If you're wondering why, it is because of Ejiao.
Ejiao is a hard gel under a donkeys skin that can be dissolved in hot water or alcohol to be consumed or used in beauty products such as face creams or soap. In Chinese medicine, it is believed to improve blood circulation. Donkeys are often stolen, mistreated and then they are sold for their skins. They are transported in cramped and dangerous vehicles, pushed to the brink of starvation, neglected and inhumanely slaughtered on a daily basis. The demand for donkeys is estimated to be 4.8 million skins a year. It's so hard to believe that in 2022, these things are still happening in the United States today! The U.S. is the third largest importer of Ejiao and it is even sold on popular websites such as Amazon!
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Donkeys are amazing animals, and they should never be treated this way. They tend to forgive humans despite how much abuse they have endured, even when we as humans have a hard time forgiving other people ourselves. It just takes time, a gentle hand and patience- all these animals want is love.