Craigslist Pets Savannah Ga Free 2024

Craigslist PetsToday, you can find mules and donkeys on Facebook Groups, classifieds, Craigslist, and at auctions. There is no shortage of options. I want to talk to you about how to buy a mule or donkey on Craigslist or at an auction. Not all mules are equal; I don’t mean just different colours. Mules are unique from horses, and I want you to know what to look for, whether it is a mule or donkey you wish to buy.

Now, for those folks considering a mule or donkey over a horse, I want you to know you’re not alone. People from all around the world ask why they should believe a mule or donkey over a horse.

Maybe they’re thinking about buying one for themselves. Perhaps they are looking for an experience to share with their children. Maybe they want the family to join in on the joy of caring for, training, and riding an equine, and they’ve heard good things about the mule or the donkey. Yes, I want to tell you how to buy an animal at auction, but I also want you to know WHY these animals are amazing first.

Before I get too far if you’re convinced that a mule is your next buddy, I want you to consider purchasing my instructional video, So You Want To Buy A Mule. In this video, I answer every one of the common questions folks want to know when they will look at a mule they’re considering for purchase.

I’ll talk about the mule and the donkey throughout this article. I almost always use those two terms interchangeably. There are some instances where the donkey is different from the mule, but for the most part, you can also read “donkey” when I say mule.

Why Folks Choose the Mule and the Donkey

Everyone has different reasons for choosing the animal they do. For me, I encourage folks to choose the mule because they take care of themselves. The donkey is very self-sufficient, a trait passed along to the mule, too.

You can take a green mule and ride it on the side of a mountain, and because of the way their brain works (which they get from the donkey), that mule can take care of himself along the cliff. That mule will go in and out of rocks, see future danger, and decide to avoid risk.

There is a downside to this, though.

It is IMPERATIVE that when you ride, you are the herd leader. The downside of this fantastic benefit is that if you are not the herd leader, they will take you wherever they want. And boy, will they do that.

When it comes to being in the mountains, working, pulling wagons, and packing… they’re strong and consistent. They are a well-rounded equine. Moreover, they’re a tremendous all-around animal.

A Unique Animal that Stands Out and Catches the Eye

Folks in the equine community know the market has bottomed out regarding horses. It’s been this way since 2008. So, folks looked around and found that mules are unique and different. With an over-saturated horse market, mule and donkey owners now have something no one else has, and they have something they can show off!

The mule is a unique toy — very different. All these articles say, “Mules are safe. Mules won’t hurt themselves. Mules won’t overeat. Mules won’t…” and all of that sounds great. Mules become easy maintenance in their eyes. So now they have something they can show off, enjoy, and practically maintenance-free.

Except it’s not the case.

Yes, the mule is unique. Yes, the donkey catches the eye. Yes, they are consistent. Yes, they are brilliant. And these are just a few reasons why folks seek out the mule.

But get this in your head — they are still an equine. They all buck. They all bite. They all kick. They all run off. They do it because they’re an equine.

So please do not choose the mule because you heard someone say they’re maintenance-free (they’re not). Choose a mule or donkey because they are intelligent, consistent, and hard-working.

The Consistency Of A Mule or Donkey Over a Horse or Pony

Mules and donkeys are bright. They think about the next step they will take before they do.

Just look at the Grand Canyon.

They do not ride horses down the walls of the Grand Canyon. Have you ever stopped to consider why? Consistency. Mules are more consistent and sure-footed than the horse. Horses will tend to blow up and go into fright and flight. This would be considered inconsistent behaviour.

Fright and flight are typical for all equine. The equine is at the bottom of the food chain, so they start running or buckling.

But the mule is more apt to stop and look at something and figure it out rather than get themselves into a jam. They handle the heat (weather) a lot easier. They can go up and down these mountains easily and in the heat. They hold it pretty nicely.

They handle cool weather, too. Still, with the Grand Canyon, it can get freezing! It was eight degrees below zero the last time I was there packing freight. Our team handled it wonderfully. They can take the cold weather and even ice.

The surefootedness mentioned along the walls of the Grand Canyon, well, when walking on ice, they’re cautious about how they put their feet on the ground because they can feel it give. You will see them take smaller steps as a result. They are very, very careful about taking care of themselves.

It still has to be said that the mule is part horse, which means there will always be a horse in him… just how much? That can vary from mule to mule.

Today, mules are being bred very well, but they’re breeding for cow work or cutting, which is no good for the trail rider — the trail rider wants to go down the trail.

Cow work is incredibly fast-moving, and the horses have to think quickly. They also have entirely different muscle structures. In this scenario, the hip will be higher than the wither.

If we take a mule bred from one of these horses, the mule will have a downhill hip — if we use him for riding, it can be a problem. For a trail rider, we want the ride to be balanced, and if the rider is always trying to stay on and keep the saddle in place, it’s no fun riding on the trail. So, a downhill hip is going to cause you a lot of problems.

When you’re doing cow work, it’s highly fast-moving; the horses have to think quickly and have a different muscle structure. So the hip is higher than the wither. For a cutting horse person, they want to be down working the cow, moving it around. So, the mule’s hip is higher.

Why do you need to know this? You need to understand what is happening in the equine community and the current breeding practices to see what you’re looking at when inspecting an animal for purchase.

Yes, There’s a Difference Between Mules and Donkeys

Many people think that mules and donkeys are the same animal – they are not. They are both intelligent, calm, and hard-working, but donkeys are descended from the African wild ass and were first bred about 5,000 years ago in Egypt. A mule is a hybrid, the offspring of a female horse and a male donkey. A male horse and a female donkey produce a hinny, smaller than a mule.

Your donkey can be a variety of sizes: miniature, standard, and mammoth. A donkey can reproduce and has 62 chromosomes. A mule can also be a variety of sizes, but it cannot reproduce because mules have 63 chromosomes.

Now, let’s go back to this. The donkey doesn’t have the strength in the hip and the legs like a mule. The mule gets their hip and leg strength from their mama, the horse.

Why does that matter? If the average trail rider went out for a six-hour ride on a donkey, the donkey would be pretty pooped by the time you got back. Not so with mules. The mules have a more robust back end and legs. Yes, they do, and they can go on longer trail rides.

Just like us, donkeys and mules can work out. If you and I were going on a long hike, we wouldn’t just wake up one day and go on a 20-mile hike. If we were smart, we would prepare ourselves to be ready for that hike, strength-wise. So we’d be training. We’d be doing small walks, then longer ones, to prepare for the big one.

Well, it’s the same thing with mules and donkeys. You can strengthen them so they can move longer. Start by going on short trail rides, then longer ones; build them up so they can handle 6-hour trail rides. Even with trail riding training, the donkey can’t go on long trail rides and do well simply because of their muscle content.

Resist the Urge… Don’t Buy a Pretty Mule

I know you want the prettiest mule or donkey you can find.

  • Trust me. That’s not what you want to look for when buying an equine.
  • You may end up with a pretty mule, but there are a couple of other things you may wind up with that you didn’t bargain for. Namely, an unwilling disposition and a poor conformation. In other words, a problem mule.
  • A lot of folks will look at how pretty she is. So many owners call me saying, “Oh, this is a really pretty mule, but…”
  • This is what I call a “But mule.”
  • He’s pretty but has many bad habits that don’t work.
  • You want a mule or donkey with a good disposition.

What You Need to Look for When Buying a Mule

You want to buy a mule. You want a quality animal. You want an animal that you can work with and grow together with. Great decision.

It would be best if you looked for disposition first. Disposition is critical; if you have a willing disposition, you have the makings of a million-dollar mule.

After confirmation, you will want to look for a disposition. The disposition is how the mule is physically structured. Legs straight and an even back.

Finally, after disposition and confirmation, you want to look for training. Training is essential. However, you don’t want to take their word for it. You want to verify that the animal is trained.

In addition to the above, I always recommend a veterinarian check on your potential mule.

After confirmation, you look at the mule’s training. It’s essential, so always check for that. The last thing you do is have a veterinarian check out your potential mule.

Is It Okay to Buy A Rescue Mule or Donkey?

Be very careful.

Rescue organizations traditionally do not understand mules, and you will end up with junk that’s ready to hurt you.

I love mules and donkeys. I do. They have been so good to me, and the truth is that some humans have been so bad to these animals that the most compassionate thing you can do is to put them down. They won’t show you the pain they’re in. They will brace into pain, but underneath, they’re hurting badly.

What makes humans so unique is that God put his heart of compassion inside of us, and that compassion helps us rescue and save so many otherwise hurting animals… and people.

Unfortunately, the most compassionate thing we can do for crippled, beaten, and abused mules is put them down.

Often, you will end up with a bad experience, and an animal will be ready to hurt you.

Is There Any Good Place to Buy A Mule?

No, there is not a good place. There is not a safe place. Mules are big business, and just because a mule has been camping all over Colorado, kids ride him, and he’s got so many hours packing, it doesn’t mean he’s right for you. Please don’t buy into it.

The big thing is, when you find a mule that looks like it might be a fit for you, no matter what problems he may have, what can he do in a 10-foot circle? That’s the test.

If he passes the test, have a vet look at him and give you the sign that the mule is healthy inside.

I know people all over the United States selling mules — but I haven’t seen them ride them. I don’t know that mule. When I get time with the mule, do what I’ve described in this article, and then I can say, “Okay, I know this mule is well-trained.” It doesn’t happen very often, but I can tell you that it does happen, and I’ve helped people out over the years in this way.

Occasionally, someone I know will sell a mule, and I know they have good mules, which helps. So, relationships with the seller or the mule themself can help you make a good decision.

The best thing you can do is find someone who is done riding their mule or donkey. They’ve had this old mule for a long time, and it’s just been a good part of the family.

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