What's New: Save Your Ass Long Ear Rescue

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First Time Donkey Owner?


The following is from Save Your Ass Long Ear Rescue:


Save Your Ass Needs A Forever Home

After graciously housing the rescue for over 15 years Ann and Jeff are ready to have their property back and enjoy a peaceful retirement together. We have also outgrown our home and need more space so that the rescue can stretch its legs and expand. If you own a property or know of someone who may have the perfect fit.

Click Here To Read More

What’s New At The Rescue?

We have a full house right now of rescues and are currently housing 15 equines, and have quite the waiting list to come in. It’s very important to us to keep a manageable amount of animals as to not take on more than we can care for physically and financially. That being said there are always the unexpected vet bills and animals who come in with unknown behavioral issues that need training. Right now we have 3 animals in training with us that need some help before they’re able to be adopted.

If you’d like to read more about their stories and see who’s available you can do so by clicking below.

Available For Adoption

Save The Date!

June 3rd we are having an Open House from 11am-4pm. We will have light refreshments, snacks and our kissing booth will be set up with a long ear or two for smooching.

You can RSVP through our Facebook page under the events tab.

Our address is 23 Saw Mill Rd South Acworth NH 03607
Hope to see you there!

Bringing home donkeys for the first time can feel daunting. But we’re here to give you all the info you need on bringing home your first pair of donkeys.

Read Full Article

Save Your Ass Rescue Newletter


The following is from Save Your Ass Long Ear Rescue:



Need A Long Eared Valentine?

Let’s give some love to the rescues this Valentine’s Day! All the long ears at SYA are looking for you to be their date on Valentines Day!

It costs $20 a day to shelter and feed one rescue donkey. With a $20 donation you can take one long ear of your choosing on a donkey date day! Thank you for being their date on a day where they don’t have their own home yet. Because of you and your support they will soon!

Take A Donkey On A Date!

Thank you for your help and support to get the long ears this far, we couldn’t do it without you! We hope your day is filled with love and donkey hugs. ❤️


The SYA Crew and all the animals! Paloma, Bunny, Apollo, Athena, Benjamin, Finley, Fern and Stephen.

2023 Calendars are 20% off now through the end of February.

Take Me To The Shop

2023 SYA Calendars Are Here!


The following is from Save Your Ass Long Ear Rescue:

The 2023 Calendars Have Arrived!

Thank you so much to the folks who participated in our calendar photo contest! We are very happy to say that the calendars have arrived and we are shipping them out daily so they hopefully get to everyone before Christmas.

Order a 2023 Calendar Here

When you go to the site to order a calendar it will say it’s a 2022 one but it’s really a 2023 calendar.

Thank you all very much for your orders!

Open Shop Tomorrow

Rain, sleet or snow we will be open to the public!

The One Eyed Medicine Hat Horse


The following is from Save Your Ass Long Ear Rescue:


Ears the latest from SYA

First we would like to thank you all for your outpouring of kind responses to our last email in regards to our non profit status being lost. We have met some of the best people through the donkeys and mules and it is definitely one of the biggest perks of what we do. So from the bottoms of our hearts, thank you!

Its a.. GELDING!

Some of you may remember the little intact Jack, Apollo that came to us July of this year. The end of September was the big day he’s been waiting for…ok ok that we have been waiting for. 😁

We brought Apollo to a gelding clinic at that was hosted at Gerdas Equine Rescue Inc. The procedure went smoothly. It will take between one and two months for his hormones to settle down and for him to be safe to be in with other donkeys. After that Apollo can finally have donkey friends! It was quite an adventure of a day and we are very grateful to GER for hosting and to the vets, vet students and vet techs from Tufts University who did all the castrations today and took such great care of our spunky little boy! Congrats Apollo, onto a better happier life with many donkey friends in your future!



Athena came to the rescue as Apollo’s companion. She was in need of some groceries in addition to vet and farrier care. She is feeling like a new mare now thanks to all of you. We do not usually take in horses, however sometimes they do come with donkey friends. We try to take them in with their ‘ear challenged friends’ to ease everyone’s stress, the owners and the animals peace of mind are what is most important to us. We also took a blood test to make sure there was not a mule baby brewing in her belly, and thankfully there was not. 😊

Galdalf and Wichahpi

Gandalf and Whichahpi are part of the 4 equines we took in from a neglect case in NJ. They went from an auction to a sanctuary that was supposed to give them refuge. But instead they were yet again neglected and watched more of their friends die of neglect. We are very thankful they are with us now and will never know mistreatment like that ever again.

Wichahpi had started becoming progressively more lame as his time went on with us. He’s been gaining weight but loosing muscle mass and was increasingly sore and stiff on one of his back legs.

Wichahpi was seen by our vet to have radiographs done of his leg and back. The consensus is not the good news we were all hoping for unfortunately. Wichahpi has an old injury on his spine that now resembles kissing spine. In addition to this there is severe arthritis in his leg, and an eye issue that is most likely cancer. These are most likely the ‘reasons’ he was originally dumped into the slaughter auction pipeline years ago.

Right now our boy is on some heavy pain killers to help him to stay comfortable. But there are also two other major factors that need to be taken into consideration. His other leg has been bearing all/ most of his weight to compensate for the other injured leg. His “good” leg is breaking down and failing now as well. In addition to that a New England winter would not be kind to put him through with these kind of injuries.

It is only a matter of time before he will not have the chance for a peaceful goodbye, that we beleive all animals deserve.

We will be letting sweet Wichahpi go at the end of October, he will be surrounded by people who love him very much.

Thank you all so much for donating to my Birthday fundraiser last week for Wichahpi.  You all made it possible to get the X-rays and blood work done that he needed and a few rounds of his pain meds.

Feed a Hungry Mule/ Donkey

Bad News


The following is from Save Your Ass Long Ear Rescue:


Unfortunate News

The BOD of SYA was shocked to learn that we have lost our non-profit status. This has happened due to the fact that our FORMER treasurer had not been filing paperwork properly or in a timely manner.

To say we are shocked as well as devastated does not come close to describing our feelings.

We are making this public because as always we want our business to remain transparent to all of our supporters.

We are in the process of  having our status reinstated as an honorable and trustworthy 501-c 3.

We WILL regain our non-profit status. This temporary setback will not impact our donors who have donated or continue to donate to SYA.

We understand that we will probably lose some of our valued supporters due to this unfortunate business. This could not have come at a worse time as donations are at an all-time low and it is the time of year when many folks need to surrender their animals.

We will keep you informed as things progress, and will continue with our normal updates on the farm.
Thank you in advance for your understanding, and for sticking with us through thick and thin.

Ann Firestone

Our website will be out of date until further notice for our website to be updated and remodeled into the 21st century!
If you have any questions or would like to know who is available for adoption please visit our Instagram or our Facebook pages where we regularly post who is available. Or if you have any other questions please contact me (Hannah) by email: SYALER@icloud.com
or by phone Monday – Friday between 9am and 5pm at 603-762-2073 (call or text).
As most of you know the rescue is going through big changes. Ann is in the process of retiring after running and housing the rescue on her and her husbands property for close to 20 years, and Hannah Allen is continuing to take over and continue Ann’s amazing work of rescuing long ears after learning from Ann for the past 7 years.
In addition to this the rescue will be looking for a new location, and we have started a savings account to buy the rescue it’s own home. Ann and Jeff are staying on their current property, they are not moving.
The goal is for Hannah and her husband to buy a piece of property to live and house the rescue.
👕 You can still order merchandise through our merch page, if you have any problems doing so please reach out to the contact info listed above.
If you would like to follow us on social media, see our Amazon wish list or want to check out our website and testimonials, please click the link below that will take you to our Linktree.

SYALER Linktree

Welcoming New Arrivals 🐴


The following is from Save Your Ass Long Ear Rescue:


 Welcoming Fern

Welcoming our newest member of SYA, Fern.

Fern was bailed from auction by another rescue who kindly quarantined her and gave her a safe haven at their rescue. She unfortunately is completely feral and petrified of people. Giving where she came from I can’t blame her one bit, she came from one of the worst kill pens for animal abuse and torture that we know of. She is safe now and will be treated with the kindness and the respect she deserves.

Fern has already realized that she is in a safe place. Her “bubble” when she first arrived last Monday was 20 feet. She would bolt away from any of us and stare back at us with wide eyes. Just one week later thanks to the help of Laura, Lauren and one of our training volunteers, Mike Fern let me sit with her while she ate her dinner on Friday. Creating positive associations right off the bat is so important. She sees people- good things follow. A history of  positive reinforcement and she will be our best friend hopefully soon. The more time I spend with her the more I see that she is just scared but also very curious, you can tell she wants to be helped and loved. It will not be a quick process but we are here for her and we will stick it out with her until we have earned her trust.

Volunteer Mike Dunham sat outside her pen for close to an hour in 90 degree weather last week and Fern just hung out with him. Until she decided to lay down and take a little sun nap in his presence. How sweet is that?

Two other new arrivals at the rescue, Athena and Apollo.
Athena is a very sweet grey mare, and Apollo is a stout little intact jack. After Apollo is gelded and has a behavioral exam he will be available for Adoption. His gelding date is September 24th. Apollo is 4 years old and a very active guy who will need to be adopted out to a home with another donkey gelding who likes to play.
Athena needs to continue to eat her groceries before she will be available for adoption as well. She came to us about 200 lbs. underweight and with a critically low Vitamin E level, which will need to be rechecked in another 60 days.
It’s been 5 weeks since their arrival and both have shown to be outstanding citizens, who love to be groomed and loved on. Athena is just a little over 15 hands and is just a baby at 3 years old. She has been learning ground manners while she’s been with us and  is an incredibly smart gal, and a quick learner.

Esme and Hojo are a very sweet miniature pair of donkeys who are here at the rescue with us due to their owner passing away. It’s always very sad when this happens but we are happy to be here as a safe haven for people’s donkeys, to ensure they continue to get the care they need and deserve. Hojo especially was very depressed when first arriving, we believe due to the loss of his owner. Hojo was also severely underweight due to his lack of grinding surface with his teeth and ability to chew hay. While Esme was dangerously overweight due to eating all of Hojo’s meals.

Since being here for over three four weeks now Hojo has gained an appropriate amount of weight, and Esme has lost quite a bit just by running around her dry lot with her friend. Hojo does have Cushings disease and is going to be put on medication to help manage this. His feet are also in rough shape due to the cushings, but we believe will continue to improve over time.
Both Esme and Hojo have had their dental, vaccines and their first hoof trim. Both these two cuties are senior donkeys in their 20’s and will be looking for their retirement home to love and dote on them. Both are great with kids and love ear rubs, to be groomed or to just sit and be talked to.

Welcoming Travis and Betsy! These two came from a neglect case in NJ where a sanctuary who was supposed to give them refuge, left them without adequate food or water. They are safe now and will be given the care and attention they have always deserved and needed. Both of them have had their hooves trimmed and will be seen by our vet before the end of the month. Travis, the Appaloosa pony is completely blind as far as we can tell and will most likely need at least one of his eyes removed surgically. Betsy is Travis’s seeing eye mule. She is very underweight and was very scared upon arriving, but has settled down very nicely. Betsy needs a dental exam/float, to be dewormed, and needs some serious groceries. We will also have her vitamin E levels checked as well since she’s having a hard time gaining weight. We suspect this will improve once her teeth have had some TLC. Once Travis and Betsy get healthy and sound they will be available for adoption. We realize they will probably be here quite a while due to Travis’s blindness, so we welcome anyone who would be willing to sponsor their stay with us. ❤️


Donkeys and Mules for Adoption

Merchandise Shop

Happy Spring


The following is from Save Your Ass Long Ear Rescue:


Happy Mud Season!

It is officially false spring in New England! While we are itching for warmth what we are getting is snow and ferocious winds. Soon the sun will be shining and the daffodils will be peeping out of the ground. The donkeys have already started to enjoy more daylight hours by playing ‘dead donkeys’ in the pastures. We are just as excited for longer, warmer days ahead of us. Ears the latest news..

New Kids in Town

The month of March seems to be flying by and spring can’t come fast enough for us and all the animals at the rescue. We have been soaking up all of the warm days as have the animals, who frequently have been playing dead while napping out in the middle of the fields.

We have some new faces to introduce as we’ve had an influx of owner surrenders again the last month almost close to what happened this past fall. We believe this is due to the price increase of gas, feed, shavings and hay that are most likely going to continue to skyrocket.
Due to this we can not take in anymore animals until a few more go to their new homes, we are expecting to have more room mid to late April if all goes as planned with adoptions.

Violetta and Dusty

Violetta is a new owner surender who is with us due to no fault of her own or her owners. She was and still is so dearly loved. Our long time resident, Dusty who has been with us for almost a year now has bonded with Violetta and they are now inseparable! This is fantastic news as they’ve both already been adopted and will be going to their new home together in Rhode Island Mid April.
Some of you may remember the infected access Dusty had surgery on last fall when she was returned to the rescue. She has fully recovered and has received a clean bill of health from our vet. Dusty and Violetta have a long life ahead of them and are going to have a great life with their new family.

NuNu is another donkey who has been with us close to a year now due to some issues she was having with her feet and her body condition. She is now on the up and up and is a much happier, healthier donkey! Since NuNu has been here she had not bonded with any other single donkeys, until this month when we picked up a plucky 3 year old fellow named Martin. Martin and NuNu bonded almost immediately, greeting one another with enthusiastic and long brays. They have been inseparable since. Marty and NuNu are now a bonded pair and will not be separated. They both enjoy sunbathing in the sand, playing and chasing one another in the paddock and sharing their breakfast. What is not to love about these two?

Both Marty and NuNu are the only two animals we currently do not have any current adoption applications. If you are interested please shoot us an email.


Spring Fundraising Online Auction
April 3rd – 10th

We are having our annual online auction this year though Facebook, to see updates and the rules to the auction please like and follow the auction page by clicking the button below.
This is one of our biggest fundraisers and helps pay for everyones spring shots, vaccinations, dentals and deworming programs!
Every year we have tons of fantastic items donated. This year we have an array of especially interesting donkey collectable items, even we have never seen before!
So join in the fun, get competitive and get ready to bid for a good cause!

Open House
Mark your calendars! For the first time since 2018 we are finally having another open house! We are very excited to announce that our open house will be held on June 25th 2022! We are beyond excited to see everyone in person again

Saying Farewell


The following is from Save Your Ass Long Ear Rescue:


Saying Farewell..

We hope everyone and their animals have been faring well through the crazy mood swings of mother nature this winter. Here in Acworth NH we have been battling the frigid temperatures, where we have had weeks on end of below zero temperatures. For us at the rescue it has been brutal. Brutal on us and our bodies, mentally, and of course for the animals in our care who are always our first priority.

Last Monday while doing morning chores and check ups we noticed one of our newest rescue additions, Andele was acting off. As most of you donkey lovers know, when a donkey who is stoic by nature seems off something is very wrong. We called our vet immediately to see Andele the mini donkey.
After examining her and doing an ultrasound on her intestines it was clear she was colicing but nothing that was a clear sign it couldn’t be fixed. Our vet took a quick blood test to see if she had any kind of infection going on in her body. This determines the severity of the colic. She did not have anything major going on.
Our vet then tubed her, which is where a small tube is placed up the donkeys nose and into their stomach to give them the fluid they need with electrolytes to hopefully clear the colic and get them hydrated.
In addition to this we gave her some IV fluids and some pain killers to help with her discomfort.
On the second day we came out to do chores, to Ann’s mule flat out laying down in her pen. Again we called the vet immediately and she came out to treat Gertie for colic.
For four days straight our vet came out every day to check Andele and Gertie and to administer medication and tube/ give IV fluids. We made mashes for them every day at least 3 times per day.
Andele seemed to be doing much better, she spent Thursday morning out in the pasture walking around with her companion Wally. she laid in the sun, wandered about in the woods and explored the snowy field together with her buddy.

Gertie also spent part of Thursday seeming to feel a little better, so we let her out in the pasture with her companions Sprocket, Gusto and Slick. (Her goat, horse, and mule companions.) It was good for her to get out and walk about while we observed her to make sure she didn’t eat anything bad for her.
Gusto and Slick put on quite a show for Gertie as she watched them on the hillside next to the barn. Both Slick and Gus kicked, galloped, bucked and tore up the field as the sun set behind them. My sister who had come to help with Gertie’s care watched with me in amazement as we both cried. Animals always know when something is askew. I think we all knew at that moment that that was their way of saying goodbye.Im not sure if any of you have seen the classic movie black beauty or read the book. But it was almost exactly like the ending of the movie where they ‘danced’ to say goodbye to one of their friends. What a privilege to witness.

That evening we said goodbye to Gertie and Andele as we released them from their earthly bodies, and ended their suffering. The colic they were battling was too severe and we did not want them to suffer any longer.
We know we tried our hardest with both of them, and they were so loved and adored. But somehow it does not ease the ache in our hearts that their absence has left. I don’t think I will ever see another sunset and not think of our sweet Andele and Gertie.

Andele’s vet bill alone added up to over $3,000 which we were able to pay thanks to all of your support, from buying things from our shop, to sending donations large and small it all makes a big difference. Thank you all so much.

We are heart broken over these unfortunate events but the rest of the animals at the rescue still need to eat and chores still need to be done morning and evening every day rain or shine. Thank you all for your ongoing support, and helping us to change the lives of donkeys and mules, even when sometimes we have a few very bad no good days.

Stay warm, spring is just around the bend!

Hannah and Ann

Gertie, Ann’s affectionate mule watching Slick and Gus run around in the field as the sun goes down.

Andele with her companion, Wally walking around the field enjoying some space and exploring.

Happy 2022! 💚


The following is from Save Your Ass Long Ear Rescue:

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year from all of us at SYALER. What a weird year it has been. Between trying to keep the rescue up and running thru a pandemic, dealing with the price of everything skyrocketing, and having more than the average number of animals coming to us in need of veterinary care it has been trying, to say the least.

In the past year, we have taken in 36 animals into the rescue.

We have placed 28 animals in wonderful new approved homes.

Two animals had to be humanely euthanized.

We currently have 17 animals waiting to find their forever family’s. ️

This past year we have incurred over $25,000. in veterinary bills.

Many of the animals we have taken in have been in need of serious veterinary work, including major dental care. One needed a trip to a large animal hospital in Vermont for a hoof surgery, and many needed blood work done to determine health issues and know what meds and supplements were needed.

All of this has been made possible due to the generosity, kindness, and compassion of our wonderful support team of donors. Hannah and I thank you so very much. We appreciate you more than words can say. So many animals truly would not be where we are today without your help. We know the donkeys and mules in our care are extremely grateful as well.

We wish you all a very Happy New Year and good health and happiness in the coming year.


Ann and Hannah



SYALER eNewsletter


The following is from Save Your Ass Long Ear Rescue:


Happy Autumn

Hello again! Remember me? Apologies for the lack of newsletters. To be honest, I have just not felt up to writing. The current state of affairs in the world has knocked me off my perch a bit. I do miss writing about what is going on as a LOT has been going on at Broomtail Farm, home of Save Your Ass Long Ear Rescue.

It’s been quite stressful dealing with the increase in the price of just about everything we need. Supplies are more expensive; feed is more expensive; our hay price went up by 3.50 a bale! Hopefully we will be able to find enough to get us through the winter. Our Shelter Logic buildings all bit the dust this year so new hay storage sheds were required. We figured even though the initial investment was much greater, a shed will last a heck of a lot longer.

Hannah has been working like crazy and the results are apparent. We have taken in quite a few animals in need of medical care and training. All the animals that came in as “unhandleable” are now enjoying physical attention. All have had their VERY PRICY medical issues taken care of. Thank you, Hannah!

We have been getting a lot of calls from folks needing to surrender their animals. So many that we currently have a waiting list as we just don’t have the room or resources to take in more at this time.

We have just made the sad decision not to have our Open House again this year due to the pandemic. The Delta variant has been prevalent in our area, and we do not want to put anyone at risk. We are not doing Equine Affaire this year also due to the pandemic. We miss seeing our friends and supporters in person, but it’s not worth the risk of having anyone become ill.

For a wee bit of good news, we will be getting some new merchandise in for your holiday shopping. We have recently got in a few adoption applications, so there is a light at the end of the tunnel.

I thank each and every one of you for your kind words and acts of support. We could not do what we do without you.

Stay well.


Merlot and Grayson say have a happy fall!

Save Your Ass Rescue Newletter


The following is from Save Your Ass Long Ear Rescue:


A Very Thankful Giving Tuesday

As many of our newsletter supporters know, last year was very challenging for SYA and all involved. We went through a major farm pandemic, whereas this year we are navigating through a worldwide pandemic. There is no way we would have been able to get through last year without all of our caring supporters to help us, financially and with your kind encouragement.
So to those of you who are reading, thank you from the bottom of our hearts for helping us to continue to save donkeys and mules in need. We could not do it without you.

Some of you may remember Walton and Hobie, who we rescued just a year ago this month. They could not have landed in a better home. These guys have gotten the happy ending they so deserved.

By Hobie
Oh, hi! My name is Hobie, and I’m living in a dream!
My BFF is Walton, we are such a happy team.
But it was just a year ago we knew that we would die
Without some help from folks like you, and let me tell you why.
I wasn’t always happy! I was used for basketball.
My bones and knees still show the scars of many slips and falls.
Walton was a fine show-horse, somebody’s pampered boy
Until the day they let him go, discarded like a toy.
We landed in a killer’s lot, lost, shivering, and scared.
We were starving, cold, and wounded, and it seemed nobody cared.
The other horses on the lot were fighting for their lives.
Their circumstances were as bad as those we have described.
They kicked and bit and drove us off so we could never eat.
My gentle friend could not defend us from their teeth and feet.
Our coats were thin, our teeth were bad, our ribs were caving in.
We thought that we would never have a loving home again.
A kind man found us just in time and took us from that hell.
He kept us safe until he found a place that suited well.
Hannah came and fetched us, and we really made her cry;
And then Ann and Hannah fed us and they made us warm and dry.
They fixed our teeth and trimmed our feet and made us whole again.
And then they found our great new home! And here we will remain
To roam a big green pasture with soft beds and piles of hay,
And eat warm mush and many treats, and petting all the day.
So if you wonder if it counts that you support our cause,
remember what you’ve done to save many lives like ours.
Thanksgiving is the day that we say thanks to SYA
Because without your help, we would not be alive today!

Click here to help feed a donkey or mule monthly!



Save Your Ass Rescue Newsletter


The following is from Save Your Ass Long Ear Rescue:



 A Breath of Fresh Air to Your Inbox

We are finally into our first couple days of spring! In South Acworth NH our first day of spring we were covered in a couple inches of snow, it was a beautiful morning and all gone by the evening. We genuinely hope our farm updates and stories in this news letter help to distract you from what is going on in the “real” world right now. Ann and I made the decision on Friday to close the farm to visitors for at least the next two weeks. We believe this is the socially responsible thing to do. We hope you all stay healthy and happy!

Our annual Cabin Fever Auction is ending tonight at 9pm on Facebook. We had lots of awesome items donated this year such as tack, tasty food, a safari trip, and lots of hand-made items and art! This auction helps us to pay for a lot of our much needed grain supplies, de-wormers, annual vet care for vaccinations, dental work, blood work, and fecals, fencing that needs to be replaced, and hoof trims.

Our online auction is only accessible through Facebook, we are sorry about any inconvenience this causes you.


Whats new on the farm?

We have quite a few new animals on the farm since our last updates. It is always exciting getting to know and love each individual. Below are all of the new rescue faces!

This past Wednesday we had our veterinarian out for a full day of dentals, spring shots, blood work and donkey and mule check ups. A lot of the animals we take in need some serious dental work, unfortunately for our wallet this time around was a full day of mostly dental work.
Each animals vet work, shots, fecals, blood work, tests, dentals, check ups etc. cost us roughly 500 dollars per equine. We do NOT skimp when it comes to the animals well being, if something needs to be done that our vet recommends and that we think it is best for their health and happiness, we do it. That is why we post so much, why we spend so much time fundraising, Its all for the animals.

Hobie and Walton’s progress

Manny of you have been following the story of the horse and the donkey who we rescued last November. They were nothing but skin and bones, maybe a week away from death. We are happy to announce they are both now thriving! Both of the boys are at a healthy weight and are on arthritis medicine. They are like spring chickens now! Walton runs around the field tearing it up like a wild man, and Hobie takes comfortable walks around the field, and has enough spunk in him to boss around a Belgian draft mule. Not too shabby for a 25 year old horse and a 35 year old donkey! Walton was recently diagnosed with third eyelid cancer, we are working very closely with our vet to monitor him and make sure he is comfortable and not in pain while waiting for his eye ointment to come in. If the new ointment does not work, we will have surgery done where his third eyelid will be removed. Fingers crossed!

A Tribute to Our Mascot 

This is incredibly difficult to write but of course we need to share with all of you. On Saturday we lost our mascot Marlin to colic. He was 36 years old and in excellent health. This loss has taken its toll on all of us at the rescue. Marlin was more than his huge physical presence. He grounded all of us, including the other animals. Gertie his companion is suffering his loss along with us. They were joined at the hip and she is grieving.

I saw Marlin’s picture online in 2009. He was going to ship to slaughter on Christmas Eve. The gentle expression in his eyes reached out from the computer and I knew I had to have him. I had always advised folks against purchasing an animal sight unseen, but I disregarded my own advice and bought him and had him delivered. He was a retired Amish work mule. He knew how to drive, but not go under saddle. I took riding lessons on him for about six months. He became a rock solid trail mule. He became such a well-loved fixture at the rescue that we made the decision to keep him as our mascot. A decision we have never regretted.

He was truly a gentle giant. He touched so many lives. He gave confidence to unsure riders, to little kids, proving that big doesn’t necessarily mean scary, playing his part as SYA’s mascot was a roll he loved and played to a T.

We will miss you forever Marlin, Rest In Peace.

Click Here to See Marlins Tribute Video


Thank you all very much for your continued support and help though all of our tough times, better and warmer days are right around the corner!

With gratitude,
Hannah Exel

Announcing the 2020 Save Your Ass Long Ear Rescue Cabin Fever Auction!



The following is from Save Your Ass Long Ear Rescue:


Dear friend of Save Your Ass Long Ear Rescue,

We’d like to begin by thanking you for your past donation to one of our online Cabin Fever auctions!  The auction has become one of our most important and popular annual fundraising events, with the proceeds helping to cover the rehabilitation, medical, and nutritional needs of the mules and donkeys that are in our care.

With your support, we were able to find wonderful homes for many mules and donkeys in 2019, and to care for those who needed extensive health care and quarantine. We are off to a good start and hope to accomplish even more this year!

We are excited to announce that the 2020 Cabin Fever online auction is scheduled for the end of March, dates to be announced soon. Would you please consider again supporting the rescue with a donation of an item or service? We are hoping to offer a variety of items and want to make sure you are included! Items or services do not need to be donkey or animal related, and all add to the fun and excitement of the bidding. The value of your donation plus shipping costs is tax deductible, and we will send a receipt for your tax records.

If you are interested in donating an auction item or service this year – thank you! All you need to do is send us the following info (we need all of the seven items listed below in order to process your donation) by March 6, to: syaauction2020@gmail.com

If you have already contacted us regarding a donation– thank you also! And please make sure that we have your complete information and photo as well.

1. Item Name.
2. Item Description.
3. Image of your item for auction listing (photo, logo, business card, etc.)
4. Link to URL, if you’d like.
5. Value (include estimated shipping, please.)
6. Suggested Starting Price.
7. Contact information.

We ask that you be willing to ship your item to the winning bidder.

Your information can be sent as a reply to this email at


If you have any questions you can also call me at 413-559-8414.

Thank you so very much for your support of our auction and the SYA rescue!

Best wishes,

Joan Gemme

Save Your Ass Long Ear Rescue


Save Your Ass Rescue Newletter



The following is from Save Your Ass Long Ear Rescue:


What Does It Take to Save Your Ass?

It seems as though the hot topic on donkey groups in social media is: “What do I feed my donkey?” We get asked about donkey nutrition a lot so we would like to share a little bit about what it takes to rehab donkeys and mules in need from a rescue’s perspective.

As a rule donkeys are very easy keepers because they are browsers, which means they require walking long distances for very little food. A lot of donkeys in the US are overfed, which is just as negligent if not more so than a donkey coming to us underweight. There are a large number of risks when a donkey is overweight; their liver or kidneys could fail, they could become hyperlipemic, they could founder, and/or get laminitis. It is more natural for a donkey to be thin than it is for a donkey, who is desert species, to be fat. Over the years we have had to euthanize animals due to complications from obesity. If you are reading this and thinking “oh my gosh my donkey is a chunky monkey!” don’t panic, you’re not a terrible donkey owner! We are strong believers in meeting people where they are. We can’t be upset with people who simply do not know. That’s why we are writing this and constantly trying to educate people on proper donkey welfare.

If you would like more info on getting your donkey to a healthy weight, visit https://www.thedonkeysanctuary.org.uk/what-we-do/knowledge-and-advice/for-owners/feeding-your-donkeys The Donkey Sanctuary is great resource for donkey care!

We do all the major medical and behavioral procedures for the donkeys and mules that come in so when they get adopted they have the best possible start in their new life. When you adopt a donkey or mule from us, all the routine care has been done so the new owner doesn’t have to worry about anything besides bonding with and enjoying their new long eared friend/ friends. Secondly we do this so the new owners are aware of what they are getting into ahead of time. This is very important to us as Ann and I are animal owners ourselves, and we understand that one has to be practical when it comes to adopting a large animal into your care! It can be overwhelming for first time owners so we do our best to give them and the adoptee guidance in the right direction.

We have talked a lot about our process of taking in animals so I’ll keep it short and sweet. When we take in a new donkey or mule we let them settle in first and foremost. When we feel they are stable enough and not stressed or anxious we have our veterinarian out to give them a health check up. This includes getting their routine vaccinations, dental exam/ dental work, and if any abnormalities are found we have blood work and/or tests done.

Then we call the farrier to have their hooves trimmed and get them on a schedule for every six to eight weeks.

Since a lot of animals come to us in varying conditions, we mimic the environment, and feeding care they have been getting in their previous home, to reduce stress related issues such as colic. Once they are settled in we make a feeding plan for them depending on their condition. Typically this consists of switching them over to a mineral supplement. We use California Trace mineral Supplement, and first cut hay in slow feeder hay nets. Donkeys need to be fed small amounts, frequently.

Since we are a non-profit and are always in need of donations we believe it is important to share with our amazing supporters where your donations are going, transparency is very important to us.

This is what it costs us to take in a pair of standard donkeys from the time they arrive at the rescue until the day they are adopted. This is a generalized tally as it would be totally different for a 1200 lb. 30 year old mostly toothless draft mule! We had quite a few of those those in 2019. A pair of standard donkeys if healthy and trained, stay at the rescue an average of 3-4 months before being adopted. What do you think the total cost of their stay which includes all their routine vet work, vaccinations, dentals, health check ups, health certificates, having their blood sent out for a coggins test, worming, hay, supplements, a salt block, shavings and farrier trims, would be? This does not include emergency vet calls or medications that they may be on. For two standard size donkeys who are here for four months, the cost for us to get all of their routine care done is $1,158.08! If you’ve seen our adoption fees, you know that we do not make money from adoptions. The adoption fee helps us, yes. Our primary goal is to get the donkeys and mules healthy and happy, and making love matches between long ears and humans; which makes it all worth it.

Raise a glass and toast yourselves, you amazing ass saving supporter!

We thank you all from the bottom of our hearts, and we wish you all a wonderful new year full good health and happy brays.


Hannah, Ann and the SYA Team


Click here to see our animals for adoption!

Hobie and Walton Update

Hobie, the once wobbly little donkey is feeling fierce and full of life as of late. If you are in the pen with him, he is sure to follow you around, right at your heels. His favorite thing to do is to is sun bathe when the sun is just right in his stall overhang, and of course, breakfast.

Walton has also been full of life lately and was allowed access to the big field to play with his next door pasture mate, Vinny. Walton took advantage of all the space and trotted the entire perimeter, and then cantered back to all of his friends. He had a blast! Where Walton once had cuts, and open festering wounds, he now has new healthy skin with little baby hairs growing in. <3

Some of things we are in always in need of to continue their healing process can be found below.

-Chopped Alfalfa
-Vitamin E (Elevate)
-Purina Senior
-Hay nets with 1&1/2 inch holes

Thank you all for your kind thoughts for these two amazing equines!

“We should never doubt that a small group of committed people can change the world.”

-Ruth Bader Ginsburg


SYALER eNewsletter


The following is from Save Your Ass Long Ear Rescue:

Its the time of year we run our annual appeal!
We set a goal for our greatest need and create a fundraiser. When asked what we need we don’t normally know what to say besides the normal hay, grain and supplements. This year it has become quite apparent that we need a more adequate shelter for our quarantined animals. We have done a lot of research on what would best suit our needs, and that is a 12×24 shelter with two stalls. We would like the second stall for storing hay grain, etc. so we don’t contaminate the rest of the farm by bringing items back and fourth.

The shelter we have been using really took a beating in the last wind storm we had when it went belly up. We think the animals that are rescued by us should have a better welcome than this. The Shelter we are currently using has been good as a temporary emergency shelter. It was put up in the middle of last February before bailing two Belgian draft mules from the kill pen. The rain, wind, and snow still get into the shelter, which waists shavings that should be dry. We think the incoming long ear members of SYA deserve to have a cozy shelter to welcome them into our embrace. With a new shelter we could ensure they will be safe, warm and dry. This is very important to us as the first couple of weeks we spend with the donkey/mule are a sensitive time. We let them adjust, we do not force them to be friends with us. We show up, we are present and we give them what they need to heal physically and emotionally. Eventually this helps us to better get to know them when they are in a more comfortable state. When an animal comes in this time of year, it increases the risk of colic and other issues significantly.

In addition to raising money to purchase a new shelter for our fur babies, we are trying very hard to replenish our bank account to stock up on things like grain, hay, supplements that we need or the daily care of the animals. We believe it is our purpose and calling in life to make a difference in these equines lives. We have all the love in the world to give, but unfortunately love does not pay the vet bills, farrier bills, the animals groceries, and shavings. It takes a lot of time and money and heart to do this work, and of course dedicated supporters like yourselves.

Last year we did not reach our goal, we are very hopeful this year that we will. Please help us by supporting our cause!

Happy Holly-brays!


Hannah, Ann, & The SYA Team


Save Your Ass Rescue Newletter



The following is from Save Your Ass Long Ear Rescue:


Emaciated Horse and Donkey Become Best Friends 

As some of you may know, on the 7th of November Trevor and I went on a rescue trip to pick up a donkey and horse. (Ann was working hard for the rescue at Equine Affaire, otherwise she would have be with us!) The donkey and horse have since been given the new names Hobie and Walton. Both of these animals are completely emaciated and have been starved. Long story short, the gentleman we picked them up from today went to a farm in VT to buy horses. When looking at the horses he was going to buy he noticed a donkey and a horse in a separate pen and noticing their awful condition inquired about them to the farm owner. The owner told him in few words that they were no longer being used on his “ranch” and he was going to dispose of them in the next couple of weeks. Bless this man, he bought them on the spot.. Hobie the donkey has been used the majority of his life for donkey basketball events, which is exactly what it sounds like. People dragging donkeys onto basket ball courts, jumping on their backs for “fun and entertainment.” This is in no way enjoyable for the donkeys, and in our opinion, and many others it is 100% abuse and taking advantage of the donkeys calm and stoic nature. But more of that at a different time. Hobie and Walton bonded as a result of both of them being completely starved, bullied and beaten up by other horses.

When we first arrived to pick them up, both Hobie and Walton were standing separate from the other horses in the herd. Hobie was the first to say hello when we called to him. He was facing away from us, his ears were limp and didn’t move or twitch when we called. Instead he turned his whole body around slowly and stiffly to greet us, nibbling at our pockets and hands through the gate. We melted into a puddle. While petting him I looked around the farm to find a chestnut horse standing in the middle of the paddock, not with Hobie and not with the horses. He was standing alone and looking forlorn.  Walton, noticing that we had started to talk about him, came over, ears pricked forward, glossy eyes, and dragging feet to say his greetings. Instant tears. Instant boiling rage. How someone can intentionally starve two sweet animals to this point is just unimaginable, and there is a special place you know where for people who do such things in our opinion.

Trevor with Hobie in hand, and I with Walton hopped right onto the trailer. As we told them we are going to take care of them from here on out, this is a new beginning. The gentleman who saved them and took care of them for a month said his goodbyes and gave some treats to both of them.

We headed for our two hour ride back to the rescue. Poor Trevor had to listen to my ranting through (mostly) choked back tears of how horrible people can be to living creatures. The whole drive back I was antsy thinking about all I was going to do to, treat his infected wounds, heal the rain rot covering his back, keep him warm tonight, get rid of the lice, configuring his meal plans in my head, what to pick up at the grain store in the morning etc.

Once we got home (or to the rescue I call home) we haltered and blanketed Hobie and Walton before they stepped out of the trailer and into the rain to keep them as dry as possible. Last night it was freezing, a low of 20 degrees and snow flurries. Not the most welcoming weather, but thank goodness we have so many mismatched old blankets! We found two that some-what fit and got them cozy. We unloaded them. Hobie the brave shaky little donkey stepped off the trailer first almost falling down. Onward to their new pen across the street, where we quarantine animals for 30 days. Even thought they have current health certificates and negative coggins, we like to take every precaution to protect the other animals on the farm.

Hobie and Walton are getting small frequent meals throughout the day; five meals to be exact of warm mashes with all the supplements to help them get healthy.

To address the elephant in the room, no this is not a donkey, mule or hinny. Yes we are a donkey and mule rescue. As with everything there is the exception to every rule, and Walton is an exception right now. We would have said yes to taking him into the rescue if this sad equine friend had long ears, medium ears, short ears or even no ears! We are sure that all of our supporters stand behind us on this decision. We could not have seen any animal in that condition, and left them behind.

We will keep everyone updated as we help these two brave friends recover. If you are able to donate to the care these two are going to need we sure would appreciate it. To donate please click the link below.

Thank you to all who have given and continue to support Save Your Ass Long Ear Rescue and the work we do!

Hannah & Ann

SYALER eNewsletter


The following is from Save Your Ass Long Ear Rescue:

July, 2019

Ears the news…


I apologize for the lapse in newsletters. For those of you who do not visit us via FaceBook, you don’t know what has been going on here so I will begin with an update.

In April we took in six donkeys from a sale barn who came to us very, very ill. Our vet prepared us for the fact that they might not all make it. The donkeys  were diagnosed with  influenza and another virus. One of them, only a baby herself, aborted her foal. Two weeks after that the mules who were not even near the donkeys, came down with strangles. (The donkeys did NOT have strangles) The whole farm was put in quarantine. We beefed up our bio security big time; hazmat suits for all, foot covers, gloves, bleach to clean EVERYTHING anyone touched. Foot baths outside every entrance to every barn, and a change of suits; clothing EVERY time we changed locations.

I am happy to report that the donkeys have all recovered. After being brought up to date with vaccinations and having their hooves, which were in horrid condition trimmed they will soon be ready to be adopted.  We have negative test results on three of the mules, and two more will be tested next week. Hopefully they too will have negative results and be ready to go to new homes.

This ordeal has been incredibly stressful emotionally. It has seriously impacted our financial footing as well and it’s not over yet. We have incurred close to 9,000 in vet bills. We have been blown away by the amazing generosity of our loyal supporters.  If not for this wonderful group of people I don’t know how we would have made it through this. I don’t have the words to adequately express our gratitude.

I would be remiss if I did not thank our amazing vet Kristen Clapp and uber technician Remington Morancy; they have been phenomenal. Thanks to State Veterinarian Steve Crawford for working with us as well.  Of course super star Hannah Exel stepped right up to the plate and did whatever needed to be done. The help of our part time worker Kim Nelson and our Farm Fam pal Pomme took a bit of the load off as well. Wonderful SYA  volunteer Pam Kissel willingly dressed in hazmat gear to make sure all the animals got groomed and some cuddle time.  Those suits are like a wearable sauna. NOT FUN.  In the thirteen years of running the rescue I have never had to deal with anything like this and hope to never have to again!

I hope to get back on track with regular newsletters.




President & Shelter Manager



SYALER eNewsletter


The following is from Save Your Ass Long Ear Rescue:

April 20, 2019



Our new employee is Kim Nelson… NOT Wilson!  So please join me in welcoming Kim Nelson to the Rescue’s Staff!




President & Shelter Manager



SYALER eNewsletter


The following is from Save Your Ass Long Ear Rescue:

April 19, 2019


Ears the news…

I apologize for the lapse between newsletters. It’s been a rough winter. I recently lost my first donkey Lula at age 28 . That was a tough one for me. Jeff got her for me as a gift and we brought her home in the back of a van when she was 16 weeks old.  It is because of Lula that I began to reach out to other donkey owners, read everything I could get my hands on about donkeys and their care, their nutritional needs, behavioral needs, and what it takes to start a rescue. The rest is history.

We have taken in a lot of animals with medical issues, those needing a lot of “fattening up”, and those with severe hoof issues.  The weather has been challenging as well. Thankfully we are finally getting some warmer, sunny days and  life is looking a bit more optimistic.

We have recently said farewell to two of our devoted board members, Joan Gemme, and Jean Cornish. They will be missed. We wish them well in their new endeavors. Thankfully Joan will still be volunteering to help with the auction and side projects for which we are very grateful!

We are in the process of looking for a new treasurer for the BOD as well as someone gifted in the art of fund raising. If you or anyone you know might be interested please let me know.

We currently have several adoptions pending and several in the works, just waiting for i’s to be dotted and t’s to be crossed. Shadow will be going to a wonderful home where she will have the company of many other donkeys of varying sizes. Sol and Luna will be going to their new home next month, as hopefully will be Ruth and Ezra.  We have people interested in Molly and Shadow, so hopefully all will be in new, loving homes before long. We love having them here but it is no substitute for being doted on by forever owners.  I am keeping my fingers crossed for the adoption of Manny and Sibley as well.

We are having our annual Open House on May 18th this year and hope to see you there! It’s a fun day to hang with the animals, other like minded folks, share food and a good time.  It will be held from 11:00 to 4:00. Please join us and bring your friends!

I would also like to publicly welcome’s our newest employee, Kim Wilson who now works weekends. I get a day off!!  Kim is a hard worker with a wonderful sense of humor; paramount for this job, and a great love for the animals.  We are happy to have her on board!

I will do my best to get back on track with the timely writing of this newsletter.



President & Shelter Manager



SYALER eNewsletter


The following is from Save Your Ass Long Ear Rescue:

December 28, 2018


Happy Holidays to all of our friends and supporters!

There are only a few days left for us to reach our goal-won’t you please consider a donation?

At SYALER, ALL of your donated funds go directly toward the care of the donkeys, mules, and hinnies, as they wait for their forever homes. We only have one full time paid employee, the rest of the work (and it’s a lot!) is done by a dedicated team of volunteers. Your support is essential to continue our mission!

Please consider a donation of any amount.  Even $5 will buy a bale of hay, $35.00 will pay for a hoof trim, and $70 will cover a farm call by one of our wonderful veterinarians.

And now, with our fearless leader Ann Firestone out of commission with a broken leg, funds are also needed to hire temporary barn help until she gets back on her feet.

We wish you all a wonderful holiday season, and send a heartful thank you for your continued support ️






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