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‘It’s a joy to see their relationship grow’: healthy lockdown foal born to rescued jenny

A foal born to a rescued donkey will have a “home for life” after his arrival on Easter weekend.

Lockie was born on Easter Monday (13 April) after his mother, Honeybee, was brought into the care of the Donkey Sanctuary Ireland as part of a rescue operation.

Laurence O’Sullivan, head of veterinary services at the charity, examined Honeybee on 7 April following her arrival at Hannigan’s Farm in Liscarroll and predicted her due date must be close.

“On Easter Monday, the Donkey Sanctuary Ireland’s head of farms, Declan Sexton, kept a close eye on the expectant mother, ensuring she was comfortable,” said a spokesman for the charity.

“That evening, when he went to put Honeybee into her barn for the night, he noticed a dark shape standing behind her. It was a foal. The foal was still wet — he had been born within the last hour or two.

“He was bright and alert and even though he shyly stayed behind Honeybee, he moved about easily.”

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Vet nurse Therese Riordan checked both were in good health and the colt was suckling well. The charity decided to name him “Lockie”in a nod to the lockdown restrictions in place owing to Covid-19.

“Lockie is thriving, he is full of beans and loves to bound around,” said Mr Sexton.

“He is still a little shy, but that is to be expected at this stage as he gets used to us being around. Honeybee is a great mother. She is very protective of her foal and shields him at all times. It is a joy to see the relationship of mare and foal grow as the days go by.

“The Donkey Sanctuary has a no-breeding policy, but all foals born into our care are guaranteed a home for life, either here at one of our sanctuaries or in one of our guardian homes.”

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