‘A busy donkey is a happy donkey’ proclaims society

Ann-Marie Harrison leading Freddy with Cassy Mulcahey on her first donkey-driving lesson. Picture by Bill Tetlow
Ann-Marie Harrison leading Freddy with Cassy Mulcahey on her first donkey-driving lesson. Picture by Bill Tetlow

The Northern Region of the Donkey Breed Society (DBS) held a carriage-driving day at Judith Webb’s farm, just south of Alnwick, on Saturday.

The instructor was Rosie Mould, a vet with Alnorthumbria Veterinary Practice and a qualified UK Coaching Certificate Level 2 Carriage Driving Coach. Twenty DBS enthusiasts and members of the public took part, alongside the most important attendees on the day – three standard donkeys and one miniature donkey.

Rosie Mould, second from left, demonstrating how to harness Fancipants correctly. Picture by Bill Tetlow

Rosie Mould, second from left, demonstrating how to harness Fancipants correctly. Picture by Bill Tetlow

The DBS is a registered charity, founded in 1967, and seeks to encourage a fuller and more active life for those donkeys which are much-loved family pets or companions to other animals.

Lorraine Rae, chairman of the DBS Northern Region, said: “The DBS believes that a donkey is not just an ornament for a paddock and that a busy donkey is invariably a happier donkey and that participation in events such as today’s carriage-driving day benefits not only the donkeys, but also their drivers.

“Saturday’s event was sponsored by the DBS as part of its educational brief; Rosie’s instruction covered activities such as long-reining, lunging, ‘tacking up’ the donkey correctly and how to harness the donkey to the carriage in the proper fashion.

“Rosie was particularly careful to explain these activities from the veterinary perspective and we all had an opportunity to have a go at each activity.”