We rescued two mini donkeys from two elderly ladies who had to sell their rural property. The ladies had rescued these donkeys as newborns from a frozen farm field - about 15 years ago. The ladies are sweet, caring pet owners - who were overly sensitive to anything that they thought would 'trouble' the donkeys. As a result, they were never tied. They were never handled except to get horse treats. The only way they got foot care was every other year or so the Vet would tranq the donkeys and a farrier would literally saw off their hoof curl. The ladies fed good grass hay and the donks had a little acre playpen with a shelter. The donkeys were obese but otherwise healthy. The ladies property was about two miles from our farm - they knew about our barn and pastures and fences - and that we used to raise Quarter horses. Desperate, they asked us to please take the donkeys so they wouldn't be put down. 2 years have passed. I now have both donkeys wearing halters, standing tied without a wreck for extended periods, being brushed, wormed, fly sprayed - and I have the Fiona, the jennet, so I can trim and work on her feet - even using a little hoof jack that I made in the shop. The jack however is a nightmare when attempting to handle his feet. I've had my Farrier here regularly. He's a quiet guy who is sensitive to 'Willie's' problem. For the first year, I paid our Vet to come and tranq the donk so he could be worked on - this wasn't a 'cool-and-calm' tranq - it was a 'knock-him-out', on-the-ground procedure. Between the Vet and the Farrier the bill was $225 each time. Without full tranquilization, handling his feet was a danger to us and the donkey. Rearing, double foot kicking, weight shifting, squalling - just plain nightmare. Fearing for the safety of the Farrier, I built a solid little 'stocks' that I pull 'Willie' into with openings in the sides and back to pull a foot through - it kind of works - so far no one has been hurt - but, it takes a whole tube of Dormosedan gel to get the job done. I try to handle his front feet (can't even touch the back feet) every day when he's being brushed - fine, as long as I don't try to lift them. I often use a soft cotton rope along with the command 'lift' and I can get him to release for a moment or two - longer than a few seconds and he hits the anxiety button. I've raised and trained horses my entire life. I've never experienced this level of fear/ discomfort from a critter over feet. The cost is starting to be troublesome. And the danger / frustration is a consideration. There has to be a better way than I'm using. Dormosedan and a shoeing stocks can't be the 'new normal'. I would be grateful for any advice you all may have. Is there a technique I should be trying? Is there a safe way to restrain him so he can be worked on? Over the years I've had to tie up many a horse colt's feet so they can be worked on - horses always eventually give up and stand. Not this donkey. He'll fight to the death with no give up.