Help us to protect donkeys and mules


Join the adoption family and you'll have a friend for life


A unique way to support our ongoing work


Provide a home to a pair of donkeys

Donkeys at heart

Il Rifugio degli Asinelli was established in 2006 and is a subsidiary of The Donkey Sanctuary, UK founded in 1969 by Dr Elisabeth Svendsen MBE. It is only through her amazing devotion to donkeys and hard work that the Sanctuary grew to the international charity it is today. Over 50 million donkeys and mules exist in the world. Many need care and protection from a life of suffering and neglect, whilst others have a vital role to play in human survival and happiness; they are at the heart of everything we do here at Il Rifugio degli Asinelli.

Welcome to our family

We are delighted that you have decided to visit Il Rifugio degli Asinelli and that you share our love and compassion for donkeys and mules, such gentle and affectionate creatures. Our work is funded entirely by donations and legacy gifts. Your kindness and generosity will help us to care and protect one of the world’s most hard working and humble creatures and help enrich so many lives... for that we are truly grateful.


Sunday, 21 June, 2015 - 14:00 to 17:00

Let's celebrate Summer at Il Rifugio with Grooming Day!

From 2 pm, you will be able to learn more about donkey care and groom our gorgeous donkeys.

No booking required; free admission.


Back by popular demand the courses to learn more about the donkeys held by our Welfare Team!

Dear Friends, yesterday Italian Income Revenue Authority published the...

Office will be closed on Thursday 14th May.

Dear friends, in this time of the year our fields are covered by by buttercups , yellow flowers which are toxic for the donkeys (they...

Today, Wednesday 29th April, our Rifugio will close at 5 pm instead of 6.30.

We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause...

Dear friends, we're really happy to give you some great news: after a long trial, the judge in charge has definitely given the custody...