Foal born to rescued donkey at Devon sanctuary

Staff at The Donkey Sanctuary in Devon have welcomed the patter of tiny hooves as a donkey they rescued last year gave birth to a gorgeous fluffy foal last week.

Foal born to rescued donkey at Devon sanctuary

The grey and white foal was soon finding his feet after being safely delivered at the sanctuary in Sidmouth early on the morning of 6 March. 

The foal, who is yet to be named, was born to rescued donkey Rosie, who along with four companions was discovered in muddy, rain-swept conditions in Cornwall in April 2022. 

The donkeys were huddled in knee-deep mud and were soon transported to The Donkey Sanctuary in Sidmouth, where they received urgent veterinary attention. 

The veterinary checks also confirmed that Rosie, and two of the other rescued donkeys, Bluebell and Maggie, were pregnant. 

Bluebell welcomed her foal Chief a few months after she arrived at the sanctuary’s New Arrivals Unit, with Maggie giving birth to Cubby Leo at the end of September. 

Sara Blair-Salter, the sanctuary’s New Arrivals Manager, said: “We couldn’t guess when Rosie was due because as we didn’t know when she was in season and had mated, so we made sure to monitor her closely, checking any changes in her shape, weight and demeanour.” 

As the time neared, Sara and her colleagues noticed that Rosie’s udders had begun to swell as milk was produced, and just before 7am last Monday, her foal was born. 

Sara says: “Rosie’s birth went very smoothly, and it was quite quick. Within 15 minutes of his arrival, her foal was on his feet and exploring his surroundings. 

“Rosie knew exactly what she was doing from the off – she was cleaning her foal and nudging him towards her udder and encouraging him to feed.” 

Rosie’s foal has already ventured out into his field and has been running around confidently and exploring his new home in the Devon countryside.