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Animals get virtual presents

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A Leeds-based horse and donkey sanctuary has seen a hundred-fold increase in sales of its ‘virtual gifts’.

Hope Pastures, on Weetwood Lane, has witnessed a surge of gifts in lieu of a present , such as a bale of hay or a salt lick for the ponies. There has also been an uptake in pony and donkey adoptions and the chance to get ‘hands-on’ with the animals with a Hope Pastures’ experience or on a pony day.

These gifts start from as little as £2 for a bale of straw and the purchaser receives an e-certificate which they can print off and give to the recipient. Pony and donkey adoptions are £15 and include a photo of the adopted animal, a printed certificate of adoption and a letter about their rescue story. The sanctuary is free to enter and is open every day from 10am to 2pm in winter. See www.hopepastures.org for more.