Pet of the week: The Poitou donkey


What is it? It's a donkey of the species Equus asinus. The Poitou is a very rare breed with a long shaggy coat, and the most prized are the ones with the nattiest dreadlocks.

Donkeys kick, don't they? You'd be in more danger of being nuzzled to death by this chap. The Poitou is a most docile, loving and fun creature, though he is quite sizeable, capable of growing to about 1.5m, or 16 hands in the correct unit of height. Basically, more horse than donkey in stature, if not in temperament.

What does he eat? The usual stuff – hay, grass, carrots, apples, Polo mints, hedgerows, that sort of thing.

All right, smart ass, tell me something I don't know. The male is known as a jack, and the female is a jennie.

So, where do they live? You need a fair bit of space to accommodate donkeys. A paddock on your estate should do it, no less than an acre per animal, and they are great herding animals, so you will need a few to keep each other company. They will need shelter throughout the colder months, so a barn or stables is essential.

Can I ride him? In theory, yes, but no galloping.

How much is that donkey in the window? £2,500 – a tad steep, but worth every penny.

Why does he deserve a home? Their numbers are dangerously low – there are fewer than 800 Poitous worldwide – so they need all the help they can get.

Why you might think twice. Could be a little tricky to keep in a terraced street or second-floor flat.

Who would own a Poitou? Rock stars-turned-farmers – it's a hair thing.

Where can I get one? Unlikely you'll spot a Poitou on the pleasure beaches of Margate or Scarborough. Annie Pollock of Woodford Farm in the New Forest is the breeding supremo of the UK. She knows all there is to know about them and will arrange special tours of the farm by appointment (woodfordfarm.co.uk; 01590 626224). If you love donkeys, but your flat's a bit poky, contact thedonkeysanctuary.org.uk (01395 578222) to find out how you can get to know these lovable beasts.

Discover more property articles at Homes and Property
Suggested Topics
PROMOTED VIDEO
Property search
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Finance Director

£65000 - £80000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Finance Director required to jo...

Recruitment Genius: Medico-Legal Assistant

£15000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a unique opportunity fo...

Ashdown Group: (PHP / Python) - Global Media firm

£50000 per annum + 26 days holiday,pension: Ashdown Group: A highly successful...

The Jenrick Group: Quality Inspector

£27000 per annum + pension + holidays: The Jenrick Group: A Quality Technician...

Day In a Page

Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

The Interview movie review

You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

How podcasts became mainstream

People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

A memorable year for science – if not for mice

The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

Christmas cocktails to make you merry

Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
5 best activity trackers

Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

Paul Scholes column

It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas