A donkey named Shock was found on a farm in Ireland. A rope was tied around his neck so that the animal would not run away. Apparently, because of the wrapped rope, ulcers appeared on the poor fellow’s skin. The owner of the donkey, being completely ignorant, poured bleach on the donkey’s skin, thinking it would help him.
Then a new life began for the donkey, a new chapter of life, which was so different from the previous one. Shock has a real home, away from abuse and neglect. The animal was brought to The Donkey Sanctuary in Birmingham, England.
In this shelter, sick animals are cared for and animals become therapists. It was in this shelter in 2003 that the donkey met a 2 year old girl, Amber. She had problems with speech, she did not utter any sound.
The girl and her twin were born prematurely. Amber underwent surgery to survive.
The girl needed a trafeotomy so she could breathe. However, as a result of this operation, access to her vocal cords was blocked and she became deaf.
“She tried so hard to sit up and stand up, but she couldn’t. Her body didn’t obey her. Then we were advised a special therapy for such children with special needs and we decided to try”, Amber’s father, Julian Austwick, told The Dodo.
Previously, the girl had no animal therapists, and for Shock, too, she was the first patient. From the first minutes they felt a certain connection between themselves. They were both happy for each other. Donkey, trusting the young patient, brought his head closer and allowed Amber to hug his neck.
Parents were worried about Amber, since the donkey was much larger than the girl, and yet anything can be expected from the animal, but the result that they saw with their own eyes calmed them down.
Thanks to communication with the animal, the girl became more active and learned to ride a donkey. Time passed and she became ready for the next therapy – speech.
In November 2021, being still speechless, she once again came to the donkey, hugged his neck and said, “Donkey, I love you”.
“We were very glad. Finally our daughter was able to speak. Miracles happen!” the girl’s parents told the DoDo.
Now Amber is already going to school, growing up a strong and smart girl. And of course he does not forget about her old friend, Shock!
They walk often and like to spend time together. Before meeting each other, they both had a difficult life, but now, fortunately, they are doing well. They have healed each other!
Amber’s story has inspired many and made parents of children with disabilities believe in the power of animal therapy. And Amber’s parents even wrote a book about their impressions and experiences.
Do you believe in this kind of therapy? Have you heard of such cases?