Leeds donkeys can't get wood

Donkeys like Rosie are famous for their love of apples and carrots.

But as times get tough in the run-up to Christmas, there's one essential nutrient that the donkeys at the Elisabeth Svendsen Trust in Leeds can't do without – and they desperately need your help.

The 17 donkeys at the centre in Eccup, which provides riding lessons for children with special needs, need kind-hearted gardeners to donate herbs and logs, to help keep their teeth fit and strong.

Riding instructor Kirsty Christmas said: "We're really grateful to everyone who helps us here at EST Leeds and we get lots of people bringing in apples and carrots for the donkeys, which they love. But at the moment, we've got a shortage of logs at the centre and the donkeys really need bark to chew on.

Entertainment

"It's good entertainment for them, it helps to keep their teeth in shape and provides essential minerals.

"We can also use branches, with leaves if still attached, to hang up around the yard for added chewing and entertainment."

The friendly creatures also require herbs like parsley, thyme, lavender and rosemary for medicinal purposes, particularly hoof ailments, which occur frequently as they live far away from their natural desert habitat.

And Rosie and chums, including Kelly, Simon, Boris and Hector, undoubtedly deserve a treat - they've helped hundreds of youngsters with special needs since EST Leeds opened in Eccup nearly 10 years ago.

Logs can be donated from a variety of trees, including ash, beech, hazel, sycamore and any fruit tree. To donate logs or herbs to the centre, call 0113 261 9249.

For more information about EST Leeds and sponsoring a donkey, visit www.elisabethsvendsen trust.org.uk/leedsvideo, call 0113 261 9249 or email est.leeds@elisabeth svendsentrust.org.uk.

Professor Peter Moizer, Dean of Leeds University Business School

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