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January 12, 2009

So, Can a Mule Have Babies?

And what is a hinny?

Thanks for your emails! You have sent some very good questions.

You may have heard from some people that mules can't have babies, and heard from others that mules can. Actually both are right ... sort of.

Mules are a hybrid cross between a male donkey and a female horse. Most mules are sterile, and cannot reproduce.

However, there are a very, very few documented cases where a molly mule (female mule) was bred to a horse stallion or donkey jack (male horse or donkey), conceived and gave birth to a baby.

The American Donkey and Mule Society has more detail about this on their FAQ page at http://www.lovelongears.com/faq Just scroll down to the heading "Can Mules Reproduce?"

Here is another great story about a mule who gave birth to a foal in 2007.

Now for the second question - What is a hinny? A hinny is a lot like a mule - the cross between a donkey and a horse. But this time the daddy is a horse and the mom is a donkey (the opposite of a mule's parents).

So how can you tell the difference between a hinny and a mule? Well, it's usually quite difficult unless you actually see the momma donkey give birth to the baby hinny. Hinny's generally look much the same as mules, and there is no way to tell which it is unless you know for certain who it's parents are.

Kristie Jorgensen

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Posted by Kristie Jorgensen at January 12, 2009 08:13 PM