by Dr. Lawrence Wilson

© February 2021, LD Wilson Consultants, Inc.

All information in this article is for educational purposes only.  It is not for the diagnosis, treatment, prescription or cure of any disease or health condition.







Donkeys or burros are one of the most important animals on earth. They are found throughout the world, although they prefer warm and dry climates.

Donkeys are members of the horse family. However, they are somewhat smaller than standard horses with bigger ears and a more stocky body. You could say horses are faster, more sleek and sexy, but a lot more temperamental and dangerous. Donkeys are their less beautiful, but very cute, very docile and much safer cousins. Both horses and donkeys do a lot of healing on their owners.


Donkeys are used as beasts of burden because they are very docile, cooperative and have a more peaceful temperament than horses. They are also very sure-footed and are more disease-resistant than horses. They will also eat a wider variety of food than most horses.

They also make excellent pack animals because if they become frightened, they do not bolt, as do horses. Instead, donkeys will usually freeze and investigate what is wrong. They will not just drop a load of goods, and this is a great advantage of using them as pack animals.

In fact, donkeys are the main pack animal of the people of the earth. References are found to them in the Bible and in many other texts around the world.


Donkeys are also used to protect other farm animals from small predators. Donkeys are patient, will help out other animals, do not scare easily, and are fairly strong. They can stomp on small predators that threaten sheep or goats, for example.

Donkeys are also used, at times, for their milk, which is of excellent quality.


Donkeys make excellent pets, especially for children. They are quite safe to be around and will rarely kick a person. They love children and all of them do healing on every child they encounter. If you can afford to keep a donkey, and especially if you live in a warmer climate, we suggest having one as a pet.


Donkeys can be ridden like horses. It is okay for a child to ride a donkey provided the parent walks alongside the child and holds the child’s hand to make sure the child does not fall. This is very important because a donkey feels terrible if a person falls off and is injured, which happens often and easily.

Donkeys are really too small to have adults ride them. They will go along, however, and they are used for this purpose in some areas of the world. We do not advise placing an adult on a donkey unless absolutely necessary such as when a person is injured and cannot walk. Then donkeys are happy to help out temporarily.


If a donkey is fed correctly, it will develop – moreso and faster than most other animals. This is one of the reasons we are writing about donkeys.

Development. To develop, as we use this word on this website, means that the seven main energy centers on the body can open and grow larger. Other genetic changes can also take place that extend one’s life and improve one’s health. Development is the goal of the nutritional programs we set up. This is very different from other medical, veterinary, natural or other types of nutritional programs.

The sodium/potassium ratio. The ideal hair tissue sodium/potassium ratio of a donkey is about 0.7. This is higher than most other animals, whose sodium/potassium ratio is usually about 0.5.

A higher sodium/potassium ratio is an indicator that an animal’s brain is a bit more like that of a human being, which has a higher sodium/potassium ratio. Usually, this also means the animal can develop more easily than other animals. Other animals with a slightly higher normal sodium/potassium ratio are dolphins and whales.


Caring for donkeys is similar to caring for horses. Even more than horses, however, donkeys need human love and attention. In this regard, donkeys are more like dogs and love human company. So if you have a donkey, spend time with him or her.


This is similar to horses. However, donkeys need some fresh food, not just hay, for optimum health. If you have a donkey, please give it some fresh alfalfa grass or other fresh grass or you won’t have the healthiest animal you can have.

Carrots. However, do not feed a donkey other food except for carrots. Give all donkeys at least two medium to large sized carrots daily. Carrots are very important for donkeys. They are best raw, locally grown and organically grown, if at all possible.

Carrots promote development and have other excellent effects, just as they are helpful for human beings and many other animals. The orange carrots are best.

Which hay? The quality of hay or straw varies greatly. If possible, offer a donkey several kinds or brands of hay or straw. Allow the donkey to choose which one he or she prefers. This is quite important in some instances.

Feed only twice a day. For example, don’t feed donkeys treats during the day (see Treats below). Feeding more than twice daily is harmful for a donkey’s digestion and not needed.


Donkeys enjoy a choice of water. This gives them more choices and helps them keep their body chemistry balanced. Try to find a clean source of water for a donkey.


These are terrible for donkeys. We are not sure why, but they are all bad. Avoid their use completely. Carrots count as treats, and that is all that donkeys need as treats.


Supplement multiplication factor. When we set up development programs for animals, we first list the supplement amounts as though it were a human being. Then we multiply this by a number that corresponds to or correlates with the weight of the animal.

Donkeys usually weigh 500-800 pounds. For this reason, the multiplication factor from the human doses of supplements for donkeys is usually 5 or 6, depending on the breed and age of the donkey.

Supplement quality. Most prepared supplements for donkeys are pure enough, in our experience. They are often of lesser quality to keep the cost down. However, this is not ideal.

If you can afford it, give your donkey nutritional supplements designed for human beings. Your donkey will be healthier with these. If you can only afford the animal supplements, it is okay, however, and better than no supplements at all.

Do not give donkeys other supplements, which many veterinarians recommend. We do not find these necessary of helpful.


Donkeys are quite hardy animals. We do not recommend any vaccines for them on a routine basis. Also, we do not recommend using medical drugs unless absolutely needed. They are all somewhat toxic.


Donkeys love to live out of doors, if the climate is warm enough. They prefer not to be cooped up in barns or stalls if they can roam around outside in a fenced area. Unlike horses, donkeys usually will not jump over fences, so the fence does not have to be too high.

Donkeys need a warm place to live. Therefore, in cold climates, they definitely need a heated stall or barn. Leaving a donkey outside in the cold is a terrible idea if you want a healthy animal. It is quite cruel, in fact, and should not be permitted by law.

Donkeys like cleanliness. If your donkey is indoors, or even out of doors, try to keep the area clean and free of insects and other pests.


Donkeys are quite resistant to disease. This is one reason they are used around the world. Horses, by contrast, have many more health problems.

Wet hoofs. An important source of problems for donkeys are hoof problems if they are left in muddy grass or wet stalls. Never leave your donkey in a wet or very damp stall or location for more than a short time, and only if necessary. They much prefer drier locations. Check bedding in a stall or barn to make sure it is not too damp with water, urine or anything else.

Other diseases. We will not discuss other diseases at this time. Perhaps we will expand this article in the future.


Hair mineral testing is an excellent way to assess the balance of the minerals in the body of a donkey. The laboratory must not wash the hair for accurate results. This is uncommon in the world, today, however.

For this reason, we only recommend using Analytical Research Labs in Phoenix, Arizona, USA for hair mineral testing. However, this lab does not currently have a separate graph for donkeys and may not even want to run a donkey hair sample.

Therefore, tell them it is a horse hair sample because this is about the closest set of normal values they currently have. You will have to adjust the normal values, as described below.


Calcium 130 mg%

Magnesium 20 mg%

Sodium 7 mg%

Potassium 10 mg%

Iron 20 mg%

Copper 0.6 mg%

Manganese 0.8

Zinc 10 mg%

Chromium 0.01

Selenium 0.02

Phosphorus 50 mg%

Lead 0.2 mg% or less

Mercury 0.01 mg% or less

Cadmium 0.01 mg% or less

Arsenic 0.005 mg% or less

Aluminum 0.3 mg% or less

Nickel 0.015 mg% or less

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