A young donkey who was put on death row after he was born with deformed hind legs has made a miraculous recovery.
Vets advised the owners of Raphoe Donkey Sanctuary in Co Donegal that they would be better off putting down Timmy the donkey foal when he was born in July last year.
But owner of the sanctuary, Danny Curran, decided he would try and give Timmy a chance.
The little foal was fitted with prosthetic shoes which were glued to his tiny hooves using a special adhesive.
And now, against all the odds, is 95% on the road to recovery as he comes up to his first birthday.
Danny said “We were initially advised to put him to sleep but we never entertained that idea.
“We got him fitted with the prosthetic legs and that gave him a fighting chance but he had a tough winter.
“We put him outside in March and we honestly thought he would not make it outside.
“But he has proven us all wrong and has come on leaps and bounds. Our farrier has told us that he is 95% normal and you couldn’t ask for more than that,” he said.
Now Timmy is enjoying a normal life as he runs around the fields of the sanctuary with his mother Twilight from whom he has never been separated.
Danny estimates that more than €30,000 has been spent keeping Timmy alive and helping him lead a normal life but that most of that work has been done voluntarily.
“Without the good will of our farrier, our physiotherapist, our vet and our volunteers, Timmy would not be here today. It’s that simple.
“He looks brilliant and hopefully he will have a long life now. People come into the sanctuary and look into the field for Timmy but they can’t spot him because he has made such a great recovery,” said Danny.
To mark Timmy’s amazing recovery, the Donegal Donkey Sanctuary is hosting a first birthday party/coffee day for the donkey which has now become their unofficial mascot.
The events takes place at the sanctuary on Sunday, July 23rd between 11.30am and 4.30pm with free admission.
The Donegal Donkey Sanctuary is a non-profit making operation that helps rehabilitate and rehome distressed and unwanted donkeys. They post regular updates on Timmy and all the other donkeys on their Facebook page and run an adoption programme so people can sponsor the care of the animals. Click here to donate to Little Timmy’s Care fund.