Mule or donkey people I have questions

alliebaba

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Hi, as you can see I am from Australia. Donkeys and mules aren't that popular here...infact most people consider them an embarrassment. Not me though I reckon they are cute and different. I've often toyed with the idea of getting a mule. I've had my fair share of horses that were as stubborn as donkeys.

The question is.....if I want to breed my own mule do I need a mare horse and a stallion donkey or the other way around...or doesn't it matter?

And another question...so if all mules are a hybrid and therefor sterile does that mean a male mule will be docile like a gelding horse or will he still behave like a stallion with all the attitude? And will a female mule come into season even though there's no way she can breed?

But wait there's one more question.....what are mules like temperament wise? are they panicky like their horsey cousins? or more calm? What are they like to ride?
 

Electric

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Well, mules are more calm I find, and if you leave a mule stallion intact, he will still act like a stallion. It would be better to get him gelded. And I would go with a male donkey and a female horse. Hope I helped!
 

goodhors

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note, the website seems to have changed the A$$ word to "backside" so you can decipher my post!!

You get a mule when using a horse mare and a male from the Ass family, which include several types. Here in the States the Ass types would be donkey in several sizes from mini to about 50 inches, and the Mammoth Jacks which are the largest. The Mammoths are most commonly used for Draft mares, producing big mules for draft work. Might also be used on taller riding mares, to get larger riding mules.

If you breed using a female Ass, horse stallion, the result is called a Hinny. They are a bit more refined than the mules, but can be delicate as young animals. Not as sturdy as mules, so not bred for very much in the past. Most stallions will refuse to cover an Ass, though you could do artifical insemnation. It would be hard looking at a long eared animal, to tell if it was a Mule or a Hinny.

Both genders of Mules and Hinny's will come in season or act like a breeding stallion. Best to geld the males to prevent problems. Gelding young is even better, so they NEVER get the idea of acting that way. Both genders are usually sterile, but there are documented cases of the Molly (female) having foals, and the Jack (entire male) breeding and producing foals on mares or donkeys. A John mule is a gelding.

Jenny is what the female Ass is called, while Jack is the entire male Ass is called. The gelded donkey seems to just go on being called a Jack as well. You just want to check close to insure he IS REALLY gelded. Some entires will breed mares or Jennies, while others prefer mares or Jennies, won't cover the other if you are trying to breed more foals. The Jacks are VERY opinionated and you won't change it.

I would suggest you get a LOT of information about Mules before breeding or purchase of a donkey. The American Donkey and Mule Association is a source of MUCH information, the best place to start.

http://www.lovelongears.com/

Over the years we have met many extremely nice mules, a few hinny's. Oddly enough the best ones came TRAINED from down South, the southern USA. The people bought them, used them for years, but never actually TRAINED them do do anything new in that time! Another thing is that some folks can "get along" with mules and do very well. Most of them don't like horses! Consider horses dummies, wouldn't have a horse. Love their mules and their mules will do anything for them.

Mules come from the womb "different" than horses. Actually have little horse reactions to anything. Mules seem to need to be very confident in handler, what the lesson they are learning is understood WELL, before continuing forward in learning. They are not stubborn actually, but they may not clearly understand and wait for better explanations. They can appear very dumb, but again, not true. Just are NOT horses, don't think or react like a horse does. Some rumors are true, they will wait to get even if you are unfair in punishing them, almost always at the "worst" possible time. They KNOW where all their parts are, VERY accurate kickers. From the Ass side, they CAN kick from their muzzle, down the entire side and out behind. Do it faster than you can blink or escape!!

Mules will pick on smaller animals, cattle, colts, keeping them running or hutr them. Any of the Ass or Mules will try to kill dogs most of the time. And they WILL wait for the best possible blow to nail the dogs. Seems to be a species aversion to the canines. Mules bite like the Asses, which means jaws open big like Alligators. They can cause major damage biting, very powerful.

Not all folks are "worthy" to be mule owners. We just couldn't get around to her way of thinking. To a mule person, they can tell if the mule will like being ridden or driven or both. We had a driving mule we kept trying to ride!! She was NOT happy, and fought the whole process. Our mule friend came over and told us she never would ride, try driving her. She LIKED harness even that first time, ground drove like a champ, was going well in a vehicle quite fast. WAY faster than we would push a horse!! We didn't need a driving mule and sold her to a mule person who LOVED her. He used her for working his market garden, called her a "tomato mule" for her size, 14H, small bodied to fit in the garden. He called to see if we had more to sell!

I have learned bunches from the Donkey and Mule group, your best place to start for information. Expect to take a lot of ribbing if you get and ride a mule. Folks can't resist!! But know there are a lot (of Americans anyway) who admire and use mules exclusively. Wouldn't be caught dead on a horse!!
There is a huge celebration for Mules called the Bishop Mule Days. They compete in every kind of activity with mules only. Some folks breed mules to race them there! They are pretty fast and often darned attractive. The activities have been going on quite a while, just keep getting better.

http://www.muledays.org/

Mules are pretty neat, but not all of us can manage their eccentricities. Again, they are NOT HORSES and never will react like horses do. Good luck in your mule endeavors.
 

Weedchick

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Goodhors covered the subject very thoroughly, I would just emphasize that you get as much information as you can absorb before you get involved. Like goodhors said, mules are NOT horses, but they ARE wonderful animals. If are willing to learn you can do well. I would also reccomend reading Merdith Hodges book on training longears. She an excellent trainer and a very successful donkey and mule person.
 

currycomb

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just one more little tidbit, you only get one chance to "teach" a donkey something, so do it right. natural horsemanship works with them very well
 

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