Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Continuing Education

A few weeks ago, I noticed an announcement on Facebook about a free webcast called "The Feeding and Care of Mules and Donkeys." It was being offered through Michigan State University's "My Horse University" program. Since the presenter was a veterinarian and I'm a sponge for all things donkey, I registered and took the class last night.

I had never participated in a webcast like this before, and now I'm thinking I've got a lot of catching up to do. The things you can learn without ever having to leave your house! For free! This internet is amazing.


I was able to listen to the presenter and follow along with the slides. It was just like being in a classroom. One of my fellow donketeers and I even set up a chat room so we could pass notes without the teacher catching us. Hi, Danni!

Having cared for donkeys for awhile now, I was familiar with alot of the information, but there were a few eye-opening tidbits that I thought I'd share since many of you are horse and/or donkey owners.

Like this one. There are almost as many donkeys and mules in the world as there are horses. Who knew?


I also learned that it is not uncommon for donkeys to eat plants high in tannins, and tannin is often found in plants that are drought-resistant. I think this might explain why George, Alan and Lucy love to eat cholla cactus, but I'll have to do a little more research to be sure.

And this other thing that I learned is something I've wondered about from the moment I brought George and Alan home. Justina has wondered about it. Danni has wondered about it. Any of you with male donkeys has probably wondered about it. There are these certain mysterious parts of a male donkey's anatomy that ... well ... are kind of weird and I've always wondered what they were. Now I know.


Just in case you're viewing this on a small monitor, let me repeat that for you.
"Teats are found on the sheath of male donkeys."

How weird is that? If I can figure out a tasteful way to photograph this for you some day, I will. For now, you'll have to trust me that they're there. Unfortunately, the Q&A session at the end of the webcast wasn't long enough and I didn't get a chance to ask if they served a practical purpose. The presenter did give us her e-mail address, though. Inquiring minds need to know.

19 comments:

  1. Velllllly interesting EH!! I will trust you about the teats ;P

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  2. Oh, how I wish I'd known about this seminar. As a new mule owner of just 36 hours or so, icm sure there's so much I have to learn. I've read books, but still... Never too much info! Stop by & fall in love with Josie at http://shadowlakefarm.blogspot.com. she has the cutest little whinny-squeak!

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  3. Thats very interesting! Who knew. I could see it on Mules since they are hybrid...

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  4. Well, I thank you, as do my two male donkeys. I thought that somehow their sheaths were slightly... ahem... deformed!

    Albeit in a very symmetrical way.

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  5. Wow - I have been involved in 'painting' and 'small business' webinars, but ones on donkeys/mules, now that's cool! The WWW is such a great tool for learning about all kinds of things. When you learn about why male donkeys have teats (it's probably something in their ancient history), I know you will pass it on.

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  6. Yes indeed you learn something new everyday, thanks for my something new today lol!

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  7. I suppose it the placement of the teats that make it notable--lots of male animals have "itty bitty titties."

    @shadowlake--I believe My Horse U. archives all of it's webinar. You won't be able to interact, but can get the primary information...

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  8. Oh the interesting things one learns here at 7MSN. This is way cool that you and Danni got to pass notes and learn new things about the most fabulous animals on the planet. It tickles me that you actually called yourself a donketeer.....hmmmmmm. Oma Linda

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  9. Carol in Colorado12/7/11, 8:34 AM

    Oh my I read that circle note about the teats and thought oh no, Linda is going to try to crawl under one of the boys to take pictures to show us all. Whew, glad you didn't!! Although, your boys would be good and allow you to take said photos.

    I will have to let my dd know about Donkey U.

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  10. o.m.g. - my jack donkey has those teats! and I've always wondered about that too. So thank you, now I know I'm not (the only one) completely weird. HA!
    I could take a photo, but like you said, um tastefully? perhaps not, lol.
    You are so funny Carson. You just crack me up all the time!

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  11. Today was the first time I saw everyone with a Santa hat at the top of the web page, what fun!

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  12. Now that fact is kinda disturbing, but neat you found such a valuable info source.

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  13. This post was FASCINATING! You know, I learn something new every day just by being a blogger. But, you are right, online educational opportunities are great, especially when you need practical information and advice about things you deal with on a daily basis. Glad you found this site!

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  14. Only in the blogosphere could I learn such things!

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  15. Well, if that isn't a cliff hanger, I just don't know what.

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  16. too funny; and if you knew my history with various pets sheaths and privates, you'd laugh too!

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  17. Yay for the Doneketeers (we missed you, Justina!) and yay for Oma Linda for coining that wonderful phrase!

    Thank YOU, Carson, for letting me know about this webcast. It was fun, informative and NOW we've got gmail chat all set up! yay! :-)

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  18. Oooooh, this would have been fun. I haven't found many books that contained things that made me go hmmmm. I did wonder about the teats on Ripley but wasn't gonna try and get down there for a closer peek. (he's a mini)

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  19. I am picturing in my head all of the donkey owners staring at the private areas, scratching their heads and wondering what the heck that could be. I could feel the sighs of relief from the comments that they are not alone...However, being the curious type that I am, I can't help but wonder why. I may have to visit "Mr. Google". Like you, I am a sponge for knowledge. The information super highway is a modern miracle.

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