Donkey One Up-man-ship

These donkey stories are just too absurd to ever be made up so what I am reporting to you is completely factual.  Many times donkeys practice the theory that I will get you before you get me and if you get me first I will get you back!  To those who observe donkeys this information is nothing new.  To those who have never been around donkeys, I’m sure you are thinking I’m a little coo-coo in the head! Just to prove to you that I’m not here are some random examples. 

 Picture this…  it’s early in the morning and time for the boys to receive their daily beet pulp mixture.  Galahad knows this and is prepared.  As soon as he hears the door swing open and the clanking of the feed buckets he quietly heads to “feed jail” where the fellas receive their goodies.  Everyone else; Luc, Merlin and Hank look up from the hay feeder to see that Galahad on his way.  Absolutely no one wants to be last to get their bucket so Luc swings into action with Hank and Merlin hot on his tail.  As soon as Galahad sees them coming he slows down to let them pass.  Once the gang is safely in the feeding area, Galahad makes a 180 degree turn and ends up in his favorite spot and still receives the first bucket!  Mission accomplished!

Here's Galahad waiting in his favorite feed spot just outside feed jail! Click photo to enlarge

Second example:  Jim has just brought the boys a fresh new round bale.  All the fellas’ attention is locked on Jim while he deposits the  hay during which they remain secured in feed jail.  Getting that first bite is a huge one up-man-ship and sometimes requires a “Happy Dance” to the feeder where the head is lowered, ears are laid back while the heels are kicking up.  Normally Luc is always first out the gate but on this particular feed morning Galahad and Merlin are blocking Luc’s escape route… and I mean bodily blocking it completely!  There is just no way for Luc to be first to the bale.  Jim opened the gate and proceeded to give the kids more than their fair share of attention.  Meanwhile Luc is behind them trapped in Merlin and Galahad’s no passing zone and crying his little heart out.  Galahad and Merlin are soaking up this “Gotcha Luc Moment” staying extra long for ear scratches.

It’s the weekend boys… the weekend… I know you want fed but it’s still early… except in Luc’s world where he wants breakfast right now!  In feed jail we have gates to separate this area into pens.  One morning not knowing he was being watched Luc worked the chain free from the panel that holds the gate closed.  He then proceeded to pull on the chain until he figured out how to swing the gate into the isleway.  Instead of leaving the gate open, he pushed it back up to the panel with his face as if nothing had ever happened, alright he’s got this one all figured out and he is thinking that no one is the wiser.  We were wondering what is Luc was going to do with this new found knowledge and it didn’t take long to find out!

Because of Luc’s ability to open and close gates with chains all the gates leading outside of their pasture have either double snaps or carabineers to ensure the boys stay on the correct side of the fence. But Luc being Luc now thinks he can outwit those chains.  His idea was that he could hurry up feeding time by going into feed jail and opening the main gate.  He picked up the gate chain with his lips and jerked it upwards, then he pulled on the chain.  With his front hoof on the gate he pushed it back and forth at the same time he continued to work the chain with his lips.  I could see how frustrated he was getting and how he was sure that he knew how to get that gate opened!  Luc you’re just not going to do it, not only is it secured but it’s double dare ya Luc secured!

One more story…For the past few months we have had horrendous winds.  On top the mountain nearby gusts were recorded up to 68 mph.  Coming home early from work one day Jim glanced out into the wheat stubble field to the west of the house and there were four big donkeys on a far hilltop watching him.  He stopped, got out of the truck and hollered at them to get their asses home!  With Luc in the front and in single file they came across the field then proceeded to where they needed to step over the fence line that was now lying on the ground flattened by two large trees.  Talk about some guilty looking faces, those boys knew they were not supposed to be out wandering around. 

 A four wheeler ride following their tracks showed Jim all the places they had traveled to during their great escapes.  It was a well orchestrated plan as they never missed a morning feeding and always loaded up at the hay pile before going out for their daily adventure and back home every single night for bed check!  With working many long hours we had no idea what our foursome had been up to. Teamdonk once again is secure, may be that should read the neighborhood is once again secure from Teamdonk!!

Gee wonder how all those feed buckets just fell of the fence? LUC! Click photos to enlarge

 We have many more stories of donkey antics but will save them for another time.  If you are lucky enough to be owned by donkeys watch and learn, they are out there playing the Survivor Game… to outwit, out play and out think you every time!

The Teamdonk Cast of Characters:

RMS Lippyluver Luc (Luke)

RMS Magical Merlin

OK Sir Galahad

 Handsome Hank Bishop


About Teamdonk

Teamdonk is all about Kristi's three driving and riding donkeys. Join us as we share our adventures. Meet the boys Luc, Galahad and Merlin. Don't forget to visit the older blogs at, 2010, 2011, 2012 13 & 14 add the year like this
This entry was posted in Farm Related, Teamdonk #1, Teamdonk #2 and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Donkey One Up-man-ship

  1. Amie Ebert says:

    Hhahaha, they are almost as inventive as my sheltands!
    I will never forget the night I was on foal watch (watching camera feeds inside the house) and kept hearing a strange noise out in the barn, kind of a rattle rattle rattle …. would get up and check.. yup everyone in there place. go inside, few minuets later *rattle Rattle rattle* . check camera feed, to make sure it is not a outside noise… nothing. finally went out to check on some of the other stalls and found that one of my Shetlands had his stall door unlatched. the silly boy had unlatched his stall door and was going to some buckets over by the foaling barn looking for something he could get into (the rattling noise was him rolling them trying to get the lids off),,, then rushing back into his house and pushing the door shut when he heard me coming out of the house. He probably could of kept up this game if he could of only relatched the gate! He EARNED a second clip on his gate that night….

  2. Deb Clifford says:

    That is so funny! The other day our goat gate was open and their water bucket was empty. Ralph our Mini would not look at me. Guess, he was feeling guilty! Yesterday he showed his new buddy(Lily, our white standard baby) around the pasture, not leaving out the muddy spot where he dust bathes. When I got home she was covered in mud and so was he. I swear he was smiling at me!

    • Teamdonk says:

      Love these stories everyone, keep ’em comin’! Deb, that is so cute! Looks like Ralph is happy to share his mud with Lily, she’s been fully accepted into the family!

  3. Mel N.Y. says:

    A good sense of humor is a big help when you love donkeys ! I spend lots of time just watching the donkeys “horse” around.

  4. Nerissa says:


    I’ve been following your site for about a year now and I’m wondering if you have any Washington resources? I’m interested in having donkeys in the future but wanted to start really learning the differences between donkeys and horses and spending time around donkeys in general.

    I’m interested in driving, and plow work primarily but am struggling to find anyone in W. Wash with similar interests/experience. If you knew anyone you could point me towards that would be wonderful.

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