Goat dairy farms, UT farm animal hospital come to aid of ill baby donkey


KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — A donkey foal named “Pimento” is on the road to recovery after being taken in a week after its birth by the East Tennessee Miniature Horse and Donkey Rescue in Loudon. The baby donkey’s veterinarian bills, coupled with its inability to take formula, prompted the nonprofit to reach out to the community for help – and goat milk.

Pimento, which means “pepper” in Spanish, is a male miniature donkey that was brought into the miniature equine rescue group on July 21 when he was a little over a week old. He was taken to the Large/Equine Farm Animal Hospital at the University of Tennessee College of Veterinary Medicine in critical condition and they worked to keep him stable and run more tests. Pimento’s mother was not producing milk and he had infected joints and low platelet counts.

In order to keep up with the costs for the baby donkey’s treatment, the East Tennessee Miniature Horse and Donkey Rescue held yard sales and online fundraisers. By Monday, they had reached their fundraising goal thanks to the community and a matching donor. Apart from the money, Pimento also needed milk.

“Everybody’s just rooting for this little boy and for these complete strangers that don’t know us, we don’t know them, just for them to say we want to help and be a part of this, it’s amazing,” Angela Devine, with East Tennessee Miniature Horse and Donkey Rescue, said.

The baby donkey was refusing to take mare replacement formula and had been relying on a feeding tube. The nonprofit’s director reached out on her personal social media page asking for milk donations for Pimento, which is when local goat dairy farms stepped….or trotted up.

“We want to say thank you to our new friends at Stout Udderly Entertaining Farm, Loanoak Farm, and Abiding Acres Dairy Goats. They have joined forces and are going to keep little Pimento in milk! Thank you.”

Pimento is still recovering at UT Large Animal Hospital and East Tennessee Miniature Horse and Donkey Rescue leaders say he is improving daily. He can now walk without assistance. They are hoping for a full recovery.

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