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March 25, 2007

Temporary Shelter

Here is a nice donkey shelter that can be put up quickly in a pinch.

Last winter I had a new donkey coming in, and needed to keep her quarantined seperated from my others for a couple weeks. All of my other paddocks with barns were already in use, so I had to put up an panel pen for her and come up with some kind of quick shelter that would keep her warm and dry in the winter storms.

Here is what I came up with. I went down to my local Lowes and bought several sheets of the cheapest 1/2" plywood that they had (they were about $11 per sheet). I then set up panels and fence to make 3 sides of a 6 foot by 12 foot "shelter" area. I have pipe frames that I set up with shade cloth to cover our show pens at the summer shows that we go to. So I adjusted the way I had the pipes screwed together so that them made this nice frame over the 6x12 foot "shelter" space.


Then we cut the plywood to size, and drilled holes through it for tying it to the panels. Once the plywood was ready, I threaded baling twine through the holes and tied the plywood up nice and tight to the panels. Please note that we made sure as little twine as possible was on the inside of her shelter. The holes are drilled in pairs, with the two holes about an inch apart. This leaves only about an inch of twine inside her barn for each place where we tied the plywood to the panels. The rest of the twine is carefully tied up outside of her shelter. There are not donkeys in the area right outside her shelter (remember it was set up for her to be in quarantine). I would not want loose pieces of twine in an area where the donkeys could reach them as they might run the risk of getting caught in them somehow. So please keep this in mind and be careful to keep that part well out of their reach!


Then we put a big tarp over the top for the roof of the shelter. It took Star only a day or two, and she was used to the tarp roof flapping in the breeze, and was happy to eat her meals in her new "princess house".

So if you ever need to set up a shelter in a hurry, here is an idea of one that worked well for me. For larger donkeys or mules, you might want to extend the size of the shelter to a full 12x12 feet, but for little Star, I thought she'd be cozier in a smaller shelter.


By the way, if it rains or snows, be sure to dump any extra accumulation off of the tarp before it gets to heavy!

Kristie Jorgensen

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Posted by Kristie Jorgensen at March 25, 2007 10:57 PM