The Sanctuary Residents
As at June 2020, the sanctuary in Israel is home to 49 donkeys and 3 horses, most of them rescued in Israel or the Palestinian West Bank from appalling circumstances, abuse or because they were abandoned, plus 5 rescued cats and 2 rescued dogs. Here, we would like to introduce you to some of the equine residents and their stories.
Click on the relevant picture to see a short story about the donkey
Once open, you can scroll through the gallery by using the arrows to the right of each picture
Stevie was rescued by a kind Bedouin man in Southern Israel who had seen local children riding and abusing this donkey. He offered the youngsters money just to get Stevie away from the daily torture he had to endure. Though still young, Stevie has some an eyesight degeneration and has had to live his life at the ‘mercy’ of his abusers, despite the fact that he can barely see. His body is covered in scars but despite all he has been through, he’s calm and seems to appreciate a gentle human touch.
Gideon was rescued after two kind people spotted him stranded in the heavy pouring rain and floods with ropes around his neck in January 2020. He was soaked to the bone and turned out to be an ungelded male with a round tummy, rather than a pregnant female as his two rescuers first believed! After settling in, he was gelded a couple of days later. He was named after Lucy's beloved rescue donkey Gideon who has been missing since the arson attack on the old sanctuary in the summer of 2017.
Dear old Arnold was terribly abused at a market after being left abandoned in torrential rain. He was found by youngsters who decided to torment him and stone him and it took a week or so to secure his rescue. He is so grateful to be at the sanctuary, despite the abuse he’s suffered and the discomfort of his wounds and scars. He is a gentle and calm little donkey who has immediately found his place within our herd.
Harry (the darker boy) and Paulo (the lighter) were rescued in July 2019. These two working donkeys were found being severely beaten next to a village that backs onto the Palestinian West Bank. They were confiscated by the Israeli army and Lucy was called to their rescue. Both had scars and wounds that are thankfully now healing. They were brought safely to the sanctuary during the night and are very attached to each other - possibly because of the trauma they both suffered & their joint rescue.
Alan had been hit by a car and left stranded and wounded by a busy roadside in the Arab town of Qalansuwa in late May 2019. The police called Lucy who found out that Alan had already been there for a few hours. He had lost a fair amount of blood and was bleeding from his nose, he also had various cuts on his body as well as above his eye and he was dehydrated. Thanks to Lucy's loving care, he's now healing and settling nicely in the sanctuary.
Taylor was rescued by Lucy in early April 2019, along with Valerie, who we believe was his mother (Valerie sadly passed away at the sanctuary in June 2020 after suffering from a tumour). They were both being viciously beaten and Lucy was called to rescue them, They were rescued right before a bad storm hit. Taylor has scars and injuries, showing what a hard life he must have endured before his rescue.
Zachariah was found in the Golan Heights area of Israel in April 2017. We know nothing about his history and for all we know he could even have somehow made his way across the border from Syria. He had both eyes gouged out in an act of unspeakable cruelty and has what look like old stab wounds on either side of his neck. It has taken months and months of patience and care, as, understandably, he was terrified of people at first. But now he enjoys cuddles from Lucy - a massive step forward!
When Lucy first saw Ben Hur, he was being savagely beaten and galloped uphill at top speed. And he had had his right eye gouged out. Unsurprisingly, he was quite vicious and intent on harming people after Lucy rescued him. Despite his past and the fact that he can get a tad boisterous sometimes with the other boy donkeys, he has come a long way and definitely enjoys the occasional cuddle from Lucy. He is a war torn hero and a truly loveable character.
Fiona came to Lucy's sanctuary because her owner in the Palestinian village of Deir Istia, about 20 miles west of Qalqilya, wanted to 'throw out' a baby donkey who was disturbing her mother from carrying out her daily work! Separating such a young foal from her mother was heartbreaking, but had Lucy not taken her, her fate would have been terrible. She's grown into a happy, healthy donkey and has many donkey friends at the sanctuary, especially Fresco and Sam.