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Sunday 25 September 2016

Donkey dies after being exposed to 'lifetime of neglect', while his companion fights for life

Sarah-Jane Murphy

Published 12/01/2016 | 10:16

Unfortunately Marko didn't cope well with the level of neglect suffered and had to be put to sleep
Unfortunately Marko didn't cope well with the level of neglect suffered and had to be put to sleep

Two donkeys have been rescued from 'a lifetime of neglect' following a tip-off from a member of the public.

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The handsome animals, named Polar and Marko, both aged approximately 10-years, were tended to by members of the Donkey Sanctuary in the Munster Region.

The Donkey Sanctuary's Welfare Advisor (DWA), Katie Reed, paid a visit to the home and was thoroughly shocked by what she saw.

"This neglect was not due to lack of money but lack of interest," she said.

It was obvious to the experts that the animals had not been treated by a farrier in a number of years, as their hooves appeared severely overgrown, twisted and painful.

Bones protruded from their bodies, and a lack of shelter meant the animals were saturated to the skin when rescued.

Katie organised emergency transport to The Donkey Sanctuary for Polar and Marko, and made contact with a vet to administer necessary treatment to the stricken donkeys immediately.

Polar was the stronger of the two, as unfortunately Marko didn't cope well with the level of neglect suffered and was in extreme discomfort.

Tragically, it was clear that Marko was in unbearable pain as a result of his neglect, and a decision was made to put him to sleep.

Polar then had to cope with the loss of his only companion coupled with the drastic change in his circumstances.

"He didn't know what straw was and was afraid to walk into the barn.

"It is hard to comprehend that having a shelter over his head is such an alien concept for this ten year old donkey," Katie said.

Polar is now receiving around the clock care, has been treated by the farrier, equine dentist and the team are tending to his every need.

The Donkey Sanctuary rescued 500 donkeys in 2015.

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