We Love Donkeys!
Since 1999, the Turtle Valley Donkey Refuge has been offering refuge to donkeys. Our purpose is similar to other animal shelters that provide services to domestic animals, but we specialize in donkeys which cannot be adopted due to their ongoing physical health and often mental health issues. For the rest of their lives, our donkeys remain with us here at their Forever Home.
The Refuge is dedicated to ensuring that these loyal, stoic creatures are given the care and consideration that they have earned through service during the early development of industry in British Columbia and now as most often misunderstood companions to farm animals and humans.
We are committed to educating the public about the plight of donkeys and how their support can help us not only care for the Refuge donkeys but also work with donkey owners to ensure that the mistreatment of these beasts of burden ends.
The Five Freedoms
The care we have provided since our inception in 1999 has now been summarized in what is universally called “The Five Freedoms Of Animal Welfare”:
- Freedom from Hunger and Thirst – by ready access to fresh water and a diet to maintain full health and vigour.
- Freedom from Discomfort – by providing an appropriate environment including shelter and a comfortable resting area.
- Freedom from Pain, Injury or Disease – by prevention or rapid diagnosis and treatment.
- Freedom to Express Normal Behaviour – by providing sufficient space, proper facilities and company of the animal’s own kind.
- Freedom from Fear and Distress – by ensuring conditions and treatment which avoid mental suffering.
In many cases we have enhanced our interpretation of these “rules” if we feel that they do not go far enough to protect and properly care for the donkeys.