Hey, donks! Why are you in your stall on this very beautiful day? Why aren't you frolicking in your paddock?
Well, Frenchies, have you seen our paddock lately? We are on grass rationing because we tend to overeat and gain weight. When that happens, we can get a condition called laminitis, a complex disease that can cause severe pain and damage to our feet. Betsy only lets us out for a short time each day in a different field until our paddock is ready for us.
Well, here we are in the donkey paddock and, yes, indeed, something major is going on.
The guys have the grass covered with black plastic sheeting.
Ah ha! Very interesting! The grass beneath the plastic is turning brown and seems to be dying off. The heat of the sun must be baking it.
Francesca, it seems to me that they're intentionally browning the grass so the donkeys won't be able to overeat. You know, at this time of year, rapidly growing grass is very rich and contains high levels of sugar, which tastes great to donkeys. When they overeat and put on weight, their entire digestive systems become irritated.
One week later -- well, here we are in our nice brown paddock.
You can see that our restricted diet has given us a healthy, lean physique. Take a look at Clive behind me. He's found a bit of grass on the fringes of the paddock. I think I'll go and join him.
You know, this restricted diet really isn't so bad. Betsy feeds us healthy food, and we get plenty of exercise. We feel great and have no problems with our feet. We do, however, miss all of that deliciously rich and sweet grass. Oh well!