One year ago, our Welfare officer Fabrizio Massa received a complain about two donkeys, living with a mare and two ponies in a town in the Alps, Bardonecchia.
All of them had awful hooves and the area where they lived was dirty and unhealthy.
With the support of the State Forestry Corps, Fabrizio found their owners: after a long talk, he understood that the bad treatment of their animals was not a matter of cruelty, but it was a consequence of poor knowledge of donkeys and horses’ needs, which reflected in a totally wrong diet (bread, etc); in addition, a sense of embarrassment created a kind of vicious circle: at first they could not find a proper farrier, so the hooves grew hugely; and they grew so much that the owners did not dare to call other farriers, worrying that he could criticize them.
Considering that the owners were actually interested in their animals and available to learn, and considering also that donkeys & Co. had a lot of space in a beautiful environment, Fabrizio didn’t press charges, but stood by their side, provided them a lot of information and brought one of our farriers, Nicola Scalzo, who shown a lot of proficiency and patience: for one year, every 2 months, he reached Bardonecchia to trim and shape those deformed hooves.
His careful work, together with the change of diet, made a huge improvement, and now the donkeys, the mare and the ponies are finally healthy and happy – just like their owners.
Helping animals and humans is our job and it’s always a great result when we experience that education can make a huge, ongoing improvement in lives.