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A sad day for all
08 Aug
  • By Hope Pastures
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A sad day for all

We are devastated to bring the news that Muffin, our much loved little Mule has passed away.

Muffin was a real character, who was smart, strong and very lovable. He was a legend, so popular and very much adored by all our staff, volunteers, trustees, his sponsors and our supporters.

He even became ‘famous’ as he wrote his own Blog, ‘Muffins Monthly Musings’ which was enjoyed by hundreds of his followers as he made them smile with his outlook on life, news from the Sanctuary and funny sayings.

He had been part of our lives for a total of twenty-two years, fourteen of them as one of the residents when we took over the running of the Phyllis Harvey Horse and Donkey Trust and its remaining sixteen Equines, sadly Paddy is the only still living animal of all sixteen.

Sue, our long term staff member spent many hours training Muffin using positive reinforcement and plenty of treats for being good. This helped him to accept routine care like vaccinations and dental checks, so was such an important part of his life. Thanks to Sue for enriching Muffin’s life, and to our trainer Hannah Weston for guiding Sue in Muffin’s training.

Muffin was originally rescued from Pannal Horse Sales in 1994 as a foal, who only the meat man was interested in buying. Luckily for Muffin, a kind lady called Marilyn took pity on him and brought him home. Unfortunately, he was aggressive and very difficult to handle and bullied and kicked all the other rescued Donkeys. This led to him being moved to another Donkey rescue in Knaresborough, who were later found to not be caring for Muffin properly, then he was moved to the Phyllis Harvey Horse and Donkey Trust, and despite being a tricky customer in many ways, Muffin was exceptionally loved and cared for and his character made him even more lovable.

Throughout his life, Muffin was known for his good health and low maintenance care, not happy to be seen by a vet or farrier and instead deciding to be ‘self-maintained’ apart from routine procedures, we were always impressed by how healthy and robust Muffin was. 
Sadly, as old age began to take its toll Muffin began to suffer from some health issues over the start of 2018, having had some loose teeth removed and a scare with Colic in May, too.
Over the course of the past couple of days, Muffin had lost his appetite and also some weight, many things were tried by our amazing staff and vets to encourage him to eat and take his medication but sadly Muffin had seemed to decide it was his time to meet up with his old friends over rainbow bridge. 
Sadly his health deteriorated overnight on Wednesday, and on Thursday the vet diagnosed heart failure and multiple organ failure, so the kindest thing to do was let him go.
Rest in Peace Muffin 1994-2018 Have fun over rainbow bridge with Beauty, Jasper and all your old pals. You will be missed enormously and leave a hole in our hearts, we will miss your ‘neigh-ore’ ing and squeaking whilst kicking at us!