Breaking Donkey's

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CSC

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I have been braking calves by hand my entire career, but I am getting ready to purchase a jenny colt as a calf protector, and I would like to train her to break difficult calves as well. Are their any good sites or materials that explain how to train a donkey to break a calf.
 

Bigfoot

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They don’t need trained. May run across one every now and then that’s too timid for the job.
 

cowgirl8

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That's how we use to halter break our kids show calves.. We made a harness for the donkey where the lead rope attached to at his wither.. Worked good, on one occasion though the rope got tangled in the donkey's back legs and hurt him pretty bad.. but most times it was injury free...
 

Boot Jack Bulls

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Search this topic at SteerPlanet. There are people there who are pros at using donkeys. My personal experience is:
1. Not every donkey is meant to be a calf breaker. Like cattle dogs, a good one is worth it's weight in gold, a bad one is worth a 9mm round!
2. They can be a pain to have around when not in use. Keep in mind that one that is a great calf breaker may not pasture well with other stock. They also have very different nutritional needs than most show cattle.
3. There are ways to rig their breaking set-up so they don't kill themselves or the calf.
Good Luck!
 

Philip-TX

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Boot Jack Bulls said:
Search this topic at SteerPlanet. There are people there who are pros at using donkeys. My personal experience is:
1. Not every donkey is meant to be a calf breaker. Like cattle dogs, a good one is worth it's weight in gold, a bad one is worth a 9mm round!
2. They can be a pain to have around when not in use. Keep in mind that one that is a great calf breaker may not pasture well with other stock. They also have very different nutritional needs than most show cattle.
3. There are ways to rig their breaking set-up so they don't kill themselves or the calf.
Good Luck!
#4 They will open gate latches, make all of them "donkey proof"
 

Boot Jack Bulls

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Philip-TX said:
Boot Jack Bulls said:
Search this topic at SteerPlanet. There are people there who are pros at using donkeys. My personal experience is:
1. Not every donkey is meant to be a calf breaker. Like cattle dogs, a good one is worth it's weight in gold, a bad one is worth a 9mm round!
2. They can be a pain to have around when not in use. Keep in mind that one that is a great calf breaker may not pasture well with other stock. They also have very different nutritional needs than most show cattle.
3. There are ways to rig their breaking set-up so they don't kill themselves or the calf.
Good Luck!
#4 They will open gate latches, make all of them "donkey proof"

Yes! They are actually highly intelligent animals... sometimes too smart!
 

darcelina4

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I think that is a recipe for disaster. It just isn't hard to halter break a calf by tying them, brushing them, leading them with cattle cubes for encouragement. All of my cattle are halter broke. 22 of them now but we have halter broke every calf we raised and only didnt halter break an old cow we had a few months and a bull we only planned to keep a few months. Use the cattle cubes as motivation and it is easy to train them.
 

76 Bar

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I am getting ready to purchase a jenny colt as a calf protector
Halter breaking calves aside, its my understanding a donkey who proves to be adept at guarding livestock will at best be a nusiance and more likely, pose a grave danger to your working or pet dogs. Same applies to LGDs, llamas, etc.
 

cypressfarms

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76 Bar said:
I am getting ready to purchase a jenny colt as a calf protector
Halter breaking calves aside, its my understanding a donkey who proves to be adept at guarding livestock will at best be a nusiance and more likely, pose a grave danger to your working or pet dogs. Same applies to LGDs, llamas, etc.

15 years ago, no one around my area kept donkeys with cows for protection. Coyote population got large, cattlemen started losing 4 to 5 calves each year to coyotes. Hearing that donkeys have a hatred for all canines, I bought a Jenny for $50 at a stockyard sale. She took to the herd naturally. Since bringing her on, we did not lose ONE calf to coyotes. Now, not only is she still in the pasture, but her three daughters as well. They may be loud, and look a little funny, but it's hard to argue with zero loss. They also forage on what the cows won't eat. I've seen them eating briar leaves in the winter. Require almost no maintenance. I have dogs as well. They learn quick to stay clear. From my experience, they're very intelligent. I trust walking around them more than my most tame horse. They do not "horseplay" (pun intended) around people.
 

Ebenezer

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CSC said:
I have been braking calves by hand my entire career, but I am getting ready to purchase a jenny colt as a calf protector, and I would like to train her to break difficult calves as well. Are their any good sites or materials that explain how to train a donkey to break a calf.
The old way was to tie the lead ropes from halter to halter and give them about 2.5 or 3 feet between. If the donkey is smaller and the calf is larger the next best was a rope in a padded wrap, like a old fire hose around the donkey's neck and a halter on the calf.
We always had good success for starts to put a halter on a calf and let it drag the lead road and step on it to come to a halt. We even added more rope so that back hooves would stop them, too. It is a good start and beats tying to a post to jump and jerk. And it teaches them to not spook too much from the rope dragging.
 

76 Bar

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We always had good success for starts to put a halter on a calf and let it drag the lead road and step on it to come to a halt. We even added more rope so that back hooves would stop them, too. It is a good start and beats tying to a post to jump and jerk. And it teaches them to not spook too much from the rope dragging.
IMO, excellent advice. Applies to colts as well.
 

sstterry

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This is why I like this board. I knew about donkeys as protectors, but never knew they could be used to halter break a calf.
 

gizmom

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Our son Jacob purchased a breaking donkey a year or so ago she is awesome. He has a video on our Gizmo Angus Facebook page of her breaking a calf that is over 800 pounds. The video is first day hooked up the calf was a handful but Lacy just does her job and after a few days of being worked Jacob will start leading them around. If they give him any problem he will put them back on Lacy for a little longer. I was skeptical at first but have to admit it works great. https://www.facebook.com/107999509230648/videos/1505523892919211/

I don’t know why the video won’t play but you can go to the Facebook page to see a couple minutes worth of it. The calf was not happy!

Gizmom
 

ccr

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gizmom said:
Our son Jacob purchased a breaking donkey a year or so ago she is awesome. He has a video on our Gizmo Angus Facebook page of her breaking a calf that is over 800 pounds. The video is first day hooked up the calf was a handful but Lacy just does her job and after a few days of being worked Jacob will start leading them around. If they give him any problem he will put them back on Lacy for a little longer. I was skeptical at first but have to admit it works great.
I don’t know why the video won’t play but you can go to the Facebook page to see a couple minutes worth of it. The calf was not happy!

Gizmom
couldn't see it here, went to your facebook site and seen it (very cool), then spent the next 45 minutes looking at all the neat pictures on your page.

didn't think you would mind if i posted this one of lacy
 

gizmom

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ccr

Not at all, Lacy is a sweet girl our granddaughter loves her and I think Lacy loves her! All Ella has to do is holler and here she comes. When you hook her up to work she is all business.

Gizmom
 

gizmom

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I think I figured something out the video works on my computer but not my ipad. The heifer was a twin that mamma wouldn't take last year, she turned out pretty dang good for a twin.

gizmom
 

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