Donkey makes an ass of burglar
Published 24/06/2014 | 16:37
It was more a case of guard donkey than guard dog for a pensioner who credits her pet with scaring off a would-be burglar by braying loudly.
Jaffa the donkey is thought to have spooked an intruder at his owner Mary Beetham's farm just outside the village of Catforth, Preston , Lancs, and is now enjoying extra treats following his heroics.
After hearing what she described as the donkey's "loud and very distressed cry" at around 1.30am, the 73-year-old retired PE teacher said she rushed out of the house and felt a figure brush past her as she walked outside.
"Thinking back now, it was probably a bit silly really," said Ms Beetham, who fostered 14-year-old Jaffa two months ago after he was rescued by the Donkey Sanctuary charity in Ireland.
"Who knows what might have happened, but at the time I didn't feel scared, I just wanted to calm Jaffa. He was very distressed and took about 10 minutes before he was calm again."
While she did not get a good look at the person, Ms Beetham said she thinks the figure was male and she described him as slim.
Convinced the donkey, who lives in a field close to the house with fellow donkey Jacko, saved the day, Ms Beetham said she cannot speak highly enough of having the animals as pets.
"They are just the most wonderful company," she said. "There is never a dull moment with donkeys around.
"Jaffa certainly did a good job in this instance. It was quite a scary noise he made."
Ms Beetham said she reported the incident to local police who, she added, joked about borrowing the animal for crime prevention.