Guard Donkey

Discussion in 'Dairy Goat Info' started by jimr, Sep 2, 2008.

  1. jimr

    jimr New Member

    I want to buy a guard donkey for my Nubian dairy goats.
    Which one would be the best, a Jack or Jenny?
    I have found some on Craigslist, Jacks, $50.00 and Jennys $65.00
    Thanks for the help, Jim
  2. ozark_jewels

    ozark_jewels New Member

    If your set on a donkey, get a Jenny, never a Jack.
    But with my donkey experience as guard animals I *highly* reccomend getting a good LGD or a good pair of LGD's as well. Much more effective in my experience. After getting my Pyrs several years ago, I will never try a donkey again.

  3. Sondra

    Sondra New Member

    Be careful as they can be real mean. You want to know you can handle them etc.
  4. I have two donkeys (and 2 great pyrs) Neither donkey would lift so much as a hoof, to save either a goat or a sheep and YES, both have spent every minute of their lives with either goats or sheep. They just don't seem at all concerned about them. (actually I think they would run over the entire herd to get away from something!) That said, the dogs would both lay down their lives, to save a goat, a sheep and even a donkey.. They also keep the free ranging poultry safe. I hear about donkey & Llama guards....but can't imagine the safety of my girls resting on the shoulders of anything...but a LGD.
    susie mo ozarks
  5. New Member

    I had a wonderful experience with our pair of young jennys they lived here for about 5 years. They are very different in how they do their job than dogs. Mine didn't bond with the goats, really the goats and the donkeys never had anything to do with each other. But in our situation with a deep wooded pen (Bucks summer pen, does winter pen), that I really preferred my dogs stay out of the donkeys worked wonderful. They have a natural hatered of dogs, nothing and I mean nothing can live in their pen that they don't deem OK. Because of their hatred of little things that run around I would never let my does kid on their own in the pen with the donkeys, I would introduce the donkeys to the kids. My kids don't go out into the pen near the donks until they were 8 months so for me this was never a problem.

    I am looking for a mini one now, I had two full size standards it was just too much poop and too much like having horses. I am going to get a gelding if I can find one who has been castrated correctly. Vicki
  6. We had a mammoth jenny & a large standard jenny, back a few years ago. Loved the mammoth, hated the standard (she felt the same way toward me LOL) Sold them both, as they were so bonded to each other. The two we have now are minis (both are rescues). Evelynn is four, Howard will turn a year old in Oct. Both of these are on the larger side of the height limit. (I needed a bigger gelding to be able to some day cart my fat butt around LOL) My daughter however is a wee person, So a little guy will suit her needs better... we will be adding Melvin, to our family next month. The lovely lady we are buying him from is actually having him gelded (for free) before we pick him up. She is selling out & moving closer to her family. (her husband died last Halloween) Can't wait to pick up Mr. Melvin. She's been sending us pictures. He's a tiny little guy.
    here's her website (Melvin is about half way down the page) For Sale.htm

    susie, mo ozarks
  7. New Member

    Cute cute!

    When they raise mini's to show, the males who are too large are gelded and sold as pets, that is what I am hoping to find. We have soo many horses and male donks around our road, I do not want to deal with them visiting when my jenny's are in heat like we had before! There are all sorts of horse breeders out here...if you call what thy do breeding :)

    I know who I really want to buy from, he is local, we shall see what he has. vicki
  8. my opinion,

    I would do away with the dogs and get a Jenny. We have 8 Jennys total here with the sheep and goats. The key with them is NEVER let them in the same field together. You have to make them want to stay with the animals. We tired a couple years back to put two Jennys in with each other. Well the bonded to each other and the heck with the sheep. They went to the wayside when they did that. So, we keep one Jenny per group that is all. Also, we never have a problem with the lambs or kids with them. Infact they are more protective over them than the older stock.

    We used dogs for years, but found its harder and harder to find a good dog. Now granted we have more acres to cover than most people. That might have something to do with it also. Most of the fields are 20+ acres. The dogs worked fine in the smaller fields but, in the larger ones they just got lost. The best dog we had, was a stud Komodor. He was just down right mean. We never touched him after the day we put him in with his group. The same as we did with all the dogs. I feel if you touch them then they want up in yard. That is one thing we did not have is dogs running loose in the yard. So, we never touched them. But, to me the Donkeys are just a better way to go.

    Also, with Jenny's you have to get one that has never foaled, and never plan on breeding them. Then they will be good for years.

    Ken in MO
  9. laughter777

    laughter777 New Member

    Just curious as the why never foaled? Also I have a Jenny that has never foaled, considered breeding her, but haven't. I am wondering if I could keep her with the girls when I move them to their front 2 acre pen. She lives with horses now, would moving her in with goats be a problem? I had her in the front pen, when I brought my 2 new does and kept them in the front pen away from my other girls. She stayed with them sometimes, but prefered to be away from them (not like a dog) is this normal? She would sleep near them and would get between them and the fence on the road when dogs would walk by.

  10. ozark_jewels

    ozark_jewels New Member

    Which all just goes to show that both work well *if* you get the *right* one. :lol
    I always had my LGD's on large acreages and they have always done a great job.
  11. BlissBerry

    BlissBerry Guest

    That is a very old school way of thinking. It is no longer recommended to not touch the dogs and just drop them off in the pasture.

    Reputable LGD breeders feel you should have contact with your dogs. If they are wild you have no way of doing vet care, etc. Having contact with your dogs does not lessen their ability to be excellent guardians.

    We have 80 acres and 2 wonderful LGD's. The second one was added last winter as our older Pyr, Lily, is getting up there in age and we wanted her to train the new puppy. We love Diesel our Anatolian. They have different guarding styles but I wouldn't trade either of them for the world.

    Just because a dog is born in the barn and barks doesn't make it a LGD. Not all dogs in a litter make good LGDs and if the breeder tells you differently, look elsewhere. Getting the right dog for your farm is important. Talk with breeders, tell them what you are looking for and they will help pick the best dog for your situation. We did that both times we picked our LGDs and couldn't be happier with our dogs.

    Donkeys and llamas are too unpredictable in my opinion. I have personally witnessed (at a friends farm) a 'guard' donkey kill one goat and almost kill another.

    My dogs would lay down their lives for my goats and us.

  12. coso

    coso Guest

    IMO it is getting the right one also. Dad has a donkey,gelding, and he was just plain mean to the goats. Then he has a 1/2 Pyr/1/2 St. Bernard(don't ask) that would lay down life and limb for the goats and stays out with them. I have his sister and all she want's to do is stay at the house. She does go after anything that comes near the house and barn though and the goats don't really go out that far to browse, she just didn't ever bond with them like he did.
  13. Sharpgoat

    Sharpgoat New Member

    I use Dogs Anatolian crosses my land is brush and woods and a donkey would be left behind.
    The dogs hunt in the brush and win they smell a fox other wild life they are on the hunt.
    And they stay with the goats when they kid and I know that they are safe.
    Dogs are what works for me I couldn't do it with out them.
  14. stacy adams

    stacy adams New Member

    My sis has been trying for years to take one of her gelding Llamas as a guard animal.. uh, no. I prefer having a "predator" guarding the flock. Then about a month ago, 3 stray dogs came into her pasture, killed a pregnant female and a spring baby, and tore up 3 other adults and a youngster... she was devastated to say the least. I think I'll keep the dogs! With just the barking, nothing ventures over here. :D
  15. Anita Martin

    Anita Martin Senior Member

    I think I would avoid buying a donkey as a guard also. We have three full sized horses, and one miniature horse. Our male goats and sometimes the females, when we switch pastures, stay with the horses, and I feel that the horses do provide at least a small amount of protection, especially the minature that will chase everything else out of the pasture. But I have know plenty of donkey's who were simply unpredictable, much more than the horses, probably in part due to their handling at a young age. It's hard to know what a large animal like that might do, especially in a new situation. They can kill goat sized animals easily and do. We have a labrador and a part border collie and between the two dogs and the horses, we've never had a preditor problem...yet. I've been thinking about getting a LGD, and probably will when our older lab crosses that rainbow bridge. He stays outside and barks a lot at night...I think that keeps cyotes and mountain lions and bears away, which we have around here. Plus we have electric perimeter fencing, although only 4 strands of high tensile, might deter a preditor that was only slighly hungry. Our barn is only about 100 feet from the house, with a large outside light on a pole that stays on at night....maybe that helps too. Good luck on finding the perfect guard....and be wary about getting a donkey that is untested around goats..and might be hard to handle.