below is an assortment of stories we have heard about jacks - regarding their
at times completely unexpected transfomation from wonderful, docile pet to
a vicious, biting, killing attack monster.
all the stories are true. these things did happen.
they happened to people who least expected them - people who loved their donkey.

From: Linda
To: DONKEY-MULE-PHOTOS@onelist.com

I have been reading the conversation about jacks with interest. I got my donkey about 6 months ago.. and have been on this list since I got him. I bought him from a man who just had him out in his back field and could care less who bought him or what they did with him. But he did assure me that a jack would be better for guarding goats than a jennet. I figured he should know what he was talking about.. :-(

After I had him a month or so I asked a question on one of these lists.. and in my email mentioned that my donkey was a jack. Camilla immediately told me that the first thing I should do is have him gelded unless I was experienced with a jack, and offered to send me the jack attack file she has. I received the file.. and was convinced I wanted him gelded. I talked to my husband about it be he was hesitant. Although I wanted him gelded.. just to keep the peace, I decided to wait and see how it went.. but was very careful to not turned my back to him.

He was the most lovable donkey. He had never been petted or hugged by the man that I bought him from, so I was amazed at how tame and friendly he was. I was a little weary about him being intact.. but not scared of him. Then one day my husband and I were walking in the pasture with him.. he was just walking along beside us.. then I walked a little bit out in front.. and before my husband or I knew what was going on.. the jack jumped on me from behind. My reaction to it was so fast that I didn't get hurt.. I jumped forward very fast.. and turned around swinging. I hit a lot of air.. but never did make contact with him.. but my husband came running.. and I guess that scared the jack and he took off the other way... with my husband running after him.. and me screaming at my husband. My husband (who didn't want the jack gelded) now wanted to kill him. But I got to my husband before he got to the jack.. so the donkey never got hit. :-) However, my husband quickly changed his mind about gelding. The sad thing is.. in some of the stories Camilla sent me.. these jacks are just doing what comes natural.. and end up being hurt or killed because of that.

I have since had the donkey gelded..(and he still doesn't like my goats) but because of what happened I am still hesitant to go out in the field with him by myself. I hug him and kiss him and pet him thru the fence, but the only time I go out in the field with him alone is while he's eating. Other than that I only go out there when my husband is out there with me. And that makes me very sad because I read about all the neat things you all do with your donkeys. And I want to do these things also.. but too scared to get out there with him by myself.

So.. as a "newbie" myself.. to any other newbies on these lists.. please, please have your jacks gelded!
Linda :-)


Kris Anderson,  Williamstown, MA

....... My current jack Zak was [also] quite subdued when he was younger, but
he's gotten progressively more enthusiastic as he's matured. .......when I first got him I was misled into thinking he was going to be just like Dennis.  It wasn't until after he came close to permanently damaging one of my ponies when I was gone one time, I realized that he wasn't going to be as low-key as Dennis had been.

IOW, all jacks are different in their personalities and behaviors. 
Many of them go through their entire lives without causing any problems, some start out steady and easy-going and then get more aggressive as they mature, and others may only have one aggressive episode in theirentire lives and never have another one. 

Unfortunately, the sweet, quiet, well-mannered jacks/bulls/dogs usually end up doing the most damage when they do get aggressive, because people learn to trust them and then tend to put themselves in vulnerable situations when they're around them.

Kris, a public service message from the "Watch Your Back While You're With Your Jack" Foundation, Anderson


To: DONKEY-MULE-PHOTOS@onelist.com
From: vicki/ladywife <ladywife@b..........>

I have a story to add to the jack-attack file. 
An experienced horseman fixed breakfast for his wife who had been up most of the night with their week old baby.  He hugged his wife and gave her a kiss, then walked out to the barn to feed the animals. 
Their sweet, lovable, gentle pet donkey cornered him and stomped him and bit him.  He escaped by crawling out of the stall under the hay manger.  He suffered broken ribs, a compound fracture of his left leg, a severe concussion and it took 60 stitches to reattach his scalp. 
The pet donkey was a jack.  It smelled the scent of his nursing wife on his clothing and was determined to prove his dominance on what he perceived as a male interloper (the husband).  I was the paramedic on the box that made the emergency run to the farm.  The bleeding and in shock husband laid in the barn for over an hour before the wife realized he was going to be late for work so she ran out to the barn to find out what was taking him so long.  The jack was still in a frenzy trying to rip the hay manger apart to get to him. 

I went back later that evening to pick the jack up and bring him to my place until they decided what to do with him.  He was sweet, lovable and gentle when I stepped into the stall, put a halter on him and lead him out and loaded him in my trailer without a fuss.  At my farm he acted as if it had never happened.  The vet came the next day and gelded him. 
But it was too late, his owners were afraid of him and were concerned he would go off on someone else so they insisted he make the trip to Shipsewana where they refused to sell him to anyone but the meat buyer.  Was it his fault?  No.  It was his owner's fault for leaving him intact. 
They didn't need a jack.  All they wanted was a pet.  A donkey for pleasure.  It would have cost them about a $100 give or take a little to geld that donkey, but they didn't and it almost cost Ferguson his life and in the end it did cost the donkey his life.


Kathy Dynge, Klamath Falls, OR

Well, sorry to say but, here's another addition to Camilla's jack attack file.  A man in the next town had bought a standard jack a few months ago. 
He was warned not to put him in with his gelding and jennet that he already  had.  Since the jack was so friendly and sweet, the man didn't listen to the good advise and put the jack in with the other two. 
All last week, the jack and gelding fought.  One of the man's kids even told her dad that she thought they should be separated because of the fighting.  The man didn't want to build another pen for the jack so he didn't separate them.  For a whole week the two fought.  Now, the gelding is dead.  The jack succeeded in ripping the throat out of the gelding.  I'm just thankful the man had enough sense not to let his kids in the same pen with them.  Now, the jack is for sale.  So sad.

All My Friends Have Longears


this is an abbreviated version of the 'jack files'. 
for the complete file send an email to camilla

don't miss:

 ~~ Camilla ~~

a poem by Connie Rossignol 

rated pg ;-)




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