Echo, the donkey had been walking with his twisted and overgrown hooves bearing all the pain in the world in a muddy field in Ireland, heaven knows for how long. If not years, he had surely been in the painful condition for months.

The Donkey Sanctuary

“The neglect of his hooves stands out as one of the worst cases that I have witnessed,” Jane Bruce, a welfare adviser for The Donkey Sanctuary, reflected, nearly a year after rescuers first found him. “He was shifting his weight from one foot to another in order to alleviate the pain.”

The Donkey Sanctuary

Echo was brought to The Donkey Sanctuary’s rescue centre, Ireland, on Christmas last year. He was given a complete medical examination. He was certainly very scared and skittish and was hesitant to trust people. There was a long way until he could finally recover from the physical and emotional trauma of abandonment.

The Donkey Sanctuary

Because he had really long hooves, Echo’s rescuers had X- rays of his legs to get an idea of the amount of damage in his body. It was possible that he could take a long time to be able to walk again. A farrier was called to get his hooves trimmed. This must be the first time he had them trimmed, ever.

“He could now walk free from pain for the first time,” the sanctuary wrote after Echo’s hooves were down to a normal size.

The Donkey Sanctuary

Echo has now spent a year at the sanctuary and has improved a lot. His caretakers, nevertheless, still remember his miserable condition same time last year.

The Donkey Sanctuary

“He was in a shocking state,” the sanctuary wrote. “What a sad and lonely Christmas Echo must have endured.”

The Donkey Sanctuary

Echo’s rescuers think that his traumatic memories are becoming more and dimmer as he enjoys running and playing in the fields, sleeping on cosy hay and eating content meals.

The Donkey Sanctuary

He has also met a lot of other rescued donkeys like him and loves grazing with them.

The Donkey Sanctuary

The shelter’s unconditional amount of love has finally worked its magic.

“Echo [received] the patient, loving care he had sadly never enjoyed, and which he so desperately needed to build his emotional confidence,” the sanctuary wrote.

The Donkey Sanctuary

Because it’s a harsh truth that working animals like donkeys and horses get abandoned so frequently, sanctuaries like Th Donkey Sanctuary have become essential for these innocent animals.

The Donkey Sanctuary

“He’s really come out of his shell,” Bruce added, “and is learning to trust humans again. He will now come up to me for feed and treats and is far more accepting of being handled and fussed over. He really is a lovely, friendly boy.”

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