How Much to Feed Young Donkeys

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donkeylover

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hi there,

i am the proud new owner of two weanlings, 6 and 10 months old.. i am in LOVE!

my book "Caring for the Miniature Donkey" says that weanlings can be fed as much hay as they will eat. do you all agree with that? and at what point are they no longer considered weanlings...i.e., when do i need to start cutting back?

right now they are turned out in a grass paddock with not that much grass left as winter is setting in here. i am giving them one flake of orchard grass to share twice day - in the am and pm - which they are devouring.

thanks for any and all advice. here's a photo of the little cuties and our new mini barn!

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Witts Mini Horse Ranch

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They are adorable! Sorry I don't feel qualified to give advice since I just got my donkeys a few months ago..so far I have just been feeding them the same as my mini horses and watching them to make sure they don't gain too much. Mine get grain twice a day (very small amount) and have a round bale, free choice. Good luck with your new babies...someone with more experienced with post a reply..once they pop in
 

Celtic Hill Farm

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i'm no expert on foals/weanlings. But i personally would notm give them all they can eat. I would go to www.luckythreeranch.com and e-mail Maridith Hodges and ask her. she is a really respected donkey and mule trainer.

My donkeys who are 6 or 7 get a 12% grain, it's jut a hand full. and hay 3 times a day. They get a high qulatiy hay in the morning, and a Low quality at night, when they get there grain.

I find that with my donkeys, they don't know when to stop eating. So we have to ration when they get there feed. Donkeys alos Digest Starch and Sugars more than horses, so Grains aren't good. try and feed a basic 10-12 % feed. in SMALL ammounts.
 
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FlatCreekFarm

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Hi from Missouri, and welcome to the forum
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Awwwww.... they're cute as buttons!!
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I like your barn too!! Congrats on your new babies. Per advice on this forum, I started my two when they were 4 m/o weanlings, on Nutrena Youth feed. I also added a little treat in -- a very very small amt of sweet feed. They also got hay every day (somewhat portion-controlled), and grass as the season permitted. We still do much the same at 17 months. At this point I KNOW they're no longer weanlings
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I am trying to find a lower starch feed to give them at this point, with no luck yet... at least around here. Anyway, I definitely give them portion control.

Everyone feeds differently, some feed grain and some not.

Would love to see more pictures of your new babies, and of that barn too!! pretty please with sugar on top?
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donkeylover

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ok! here's another photo.

anybody else have advice, mostly about quantity of hay for weanlings? and when to cut back!

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Celtic Hill Farm

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Donkeylover: Tractor Supply company carries All Stock feed. It's a 12 Protein, and that is what i feed to my girls.

The donkey is really cute! i want a brown one like that.
 

FlatCreekFarm

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[SIZE=12pt]What an absolutely precious photo
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And I love that cute li'l barn too!!

Thank you for sharing!!
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About the hay... I think the amount of hay sounds good...? Anyone else have input??

p.s. that photo would make a great submission for Photo of the Day - Equusite.com
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kimbell

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Mini Donkeys are addictive. I had 3 than our Jenny gave us a cute little baby girl and now I am completely hooked.

Now I have several...Dinky was our very first, he a great little guy. Then we have Lil Bit and her daughter, Liberty. She has my heart. I just bought a gorgeous black Jack, Maverick. I have 3 great little yard greeters named... Levi, Brady and Zeke. They all 3 came together and all are geldings.

I have 2 young girls, Loopy and Stormy and 2 expecting moms, Twinkle and Cuddles. And then I have 5 more bought just waiting on them getting home. They are great little creatures.
 

Emily's mom

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Welcome from Nova Scotia, Canada! Well your babies look like smaller ones of mine.(does that make sense). They are so cute and I also love your barn! Little human child is a cutie also, I only have boys!

I am very concerned about over feeding, but mine live with a full size horse who eats all the time.

So mine tend to be eating all the time too. They get very little grain about 1/4 cup, of a hay stretch or something like that, just so they are having a dish of something when the horse is eating. Our hay is quite rich but it was all we could get
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MeadowRidge Farm

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HI,
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WELCOME to our end of the forum, from cold Wisconsin. Your two new furbabies are priceless..they are adorable! Congrats on the two beauties.

Donkeys, weanlings thru adults will do best on a good grassy hay. A "pinch" of alfalfa mixed in will be Ok, but dont overdo it...alfalfa does not set well with there digestive systems PLUS they will become FAT from it. DOnkeys utilize there food very well, which is why they are called easy keepers..but if over done..they will get FAT including a crest on there neck. If you need to feed a very bad or low quality hay, then donkeys can be supplemented with a TINY amount of sweetfeed having about 10% Another thing to avoid giving donkeys is horse supplements...the latest findings from the schools (equine) has been that very few equines really do need thses supplements and that they are causing obesity. WHen a foal is born and nursing it is called a suckling, after the foal is weaned it is called a weanling, after the weanling (altho, I like to think of a weanling between the age of 4-8 months...lol..) it is called a yearling. I do give my weanlings,yearling (all of the donkeys and horses actually) free choice hay, but mine are all on dry lots, which makes a differance over pasture. I also give my foals and yearling a SMALL handful ( about 1/4 cup... ) of grain two times a day. My adults never get grained, unless there is a reason to do it. (rescue, underweight, nursing) Treats are another "goodie" which can add on weight...if you need to do treats, I have found the best is low calorie animal crackers..YES, the kind you would buy at Wal-Mart in the big kegs for kids. Horses and donkeys LOVE them.

Also, Meridith Hodges, is well known and respected but PLEASE REMEMBER her advice is not geared towards our miniature friends, but towards riding mules and donkeys. Corinne
 

fancyappy

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Congrats on your cute little donks. And I love your barn!

I am not an expert but my little guys get no grain...they tend to really get chubby. My vet really cautioned me about obese donkeys and feeding grain. They eat grass in Spring/Summer, good hay in Winter. They get animal crackers, fruit and carrots for snacks and have a mineral block. We worm every other month. I confess that when it is really cold here I give a bit of grain but that is the exception. My boys tend to turn into little porkers very easy .

Everyone feeds a bit differently as everyones donks and housing are not the same and you will find great advice here to create your own feeding program.

Arent they fun?
 

vetasst

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Mini Donkeys are very addictive. I got my first one almost 2 years ago and since have added 2 with my first foal this past spring. I absolutlly love them so much. I really couldn't imagine living without them. Enjoy!
 

PaintedPromiseRanch

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well i feel like a broken record here but your babies are ADORABLE... and watch yourself, they are addicting... we started with 3 and i have 11 now, and i began breeding on a small scale last year because there aren't many available here in AZ.

it is quite a bit warmer here than where you are obviously, but we feed our donks NO GRAIN AT ALL... they get grass hay for breakfast, and bermuda blend pellets at night. they do seem to get fat on very little feed... they have mineral blocks as well and the last few months of pregnancy and during nursing i do supplement with a small portion of mare&foal pellets.

and i want to see more pictures too. and what are their names?

Kimbell you are growing by leaps and bounds... i had to laugh, the last "donkey" i bought was also five at once...

Celtic Hill Farm, too bad you aren't closer, i have "a brown one like that" for sale upon weaning and she is a real sweetie...
 
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