There are some facts you need to know, before you go spouting off encouraging words about using any animal, much less a donkey for Pete’s sake, for entertainment for this cruel, selfish, all-about-me species we call humans. The Journal’s story about donkey basketball encourages more animal abuse and cruelty. When does an animal’s suffering for the sake of entertainment ever become right in your mind?
As a rescuer of donkeys and horses who have found themselves used as an entertainment venue for events in which they are the entertainment, let me assure you that donkeys are not meant to be used in this manner. Putting rubber booties over their hooves as they trot and canter across the floor while students try to throw a ball through a basketball net is not cute, funny, or entertaining. It endangers these highly intelligent animals so much that when their “careers” are over with this cruel sport, they are usually sent to slaughter because of their horrific distrust of the human species. These donkeys are injured, both physically and mentally, for a lifetime.
Is this the message you want to send kids – that it’s OK to abuse and humiliate animals, which in turn leads to them learning to humiliate and bully those who are weaker than they are? It has been proven that children who are exposed to animal abuse learn that cruelty to any species is acceptable.
No matter what the owners of the donkeys tell you, these animals are mistreated. Providing them with feed and water after the events in no way makes up for their mistreatment since feed and water are what any normal donkey owner would do every night. The owners of these donkeys are in it for the money, so they will say and do whatever it takes to encourage groups to participate in this animal abuse event.