Rescued donkeys find new homes

2017-05-04 15:06
Safe, happy homes await rescued donkeys  Hilton farmer Simon Chennells crouches next to some of the 80 donkeys that were rescued from being skinned alive last month. Chennells was at the Mooi River Auction yard on Wednesday where he bought several donkeys and plans to give them a good life and a happy home.

Safe, happy homes await rescued donkeys Hilton farmer Simon Chennells crouches next to some of the 80 donkeys that were rescued from being skinned alive last month. Chennells was at the Mooi River Auction yard on Wednesday where he bought several donkeys and plans to give them a good life and a happy home. (Ian Carbutt)

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Skittish and confused, the 80 donkeys that were rescued from being skinned alive last month have been given a second chance at a happy life.

The donkeys were rescued over two weeks ago by the South African National Defence Force (SANDF) who found them being transported into Lesotho near the Sani Pass area.

The donkeys were bought legally from Nkandla and illegally transported into Lesotho to be skinned alive.

The SANDF made the rescue shortly after the donkeys had crossed over the border, before impounding them at the Midlands pound.

The rescue follows the deaths of 34 donkeys in January this year when they were skinned alive near the Lesotho border.

It is believed the skins are used by the Chinese for medicinal purposes as they believe the gelatine in the skin can cure insomnia and poor blood circulation.

Since the cruel deaths, more donkeys were rescued throughout February and March and were taken to the Sani Pass SPCA before being adopted by a farmer running an informal animal sanctuary in the Free State.

The 80 donkeys were taken to the Mooi River auction grounds on Wednesday where they were auctioned off to farmers and landowners.

At least 20 donkeys had already been reserved before the start of the auction by several farmers.

Umgeni SPCA operations manager Dudu Abraham said she had attended the auction to ensure the bidding process went smoothly and to see who was bidding on the donkeys.

Abraham said she would be receiving the list of people who had bought the donkeys and would be conducting inspections at the donkeys’ new homes to ensure they were being taken care of.

She said that they deserved a happy home, especially after almost being skinned alive.

Hilton farmer Simon Chennells said he had reserved six donkeys that would be taken to his farm and kept with his sheep, which have 50 hactares of green pastures to roam around in. “They will have lots of fresh water, and will have the correct medication if needed,” he added.

He said the donkeys would lead a happy life and have a happy home at his farm.

Mooi River farmer and business owner Suhail Bhayla said he would be reserving several donkeys to bring back to his farm.

“A while ago I took in five abused donkeys,” said Bhayla.

“We looked after them, dewormed them, cleaned them every month but unfortunately we were only able to save two.”

Bhayla said the two surviving donkeys were doing “much better” and he wanted to “add a few more donkeys to the herd”.

“I love animals and they need to be kept safe and happy,” he said.


Read more on:    spca  |  pietermaritzburg

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