Why Start A Rescue??

Turning Pointe Donkey Rescue, Inc. (TPDR) has been operating as a Michigan based non-profit organization since October 2004.  TPDR’s mission is to rescue, rehabilitate, and rehome donkeys and mules as well as educate the public on proper care, handling, and training.  TPDR does not discriminate, so we have rescued some short ear equine over the years as well.  Although our goal is to rehome the equine that we rescue with amazing families, we do have some equine that we provide permanent sanctuary to due to chronic health issues. To date we have rescued from several states:  MI, OH, PA, IN, KY, NC, TN, VA, AR, NJ, NY, MD, TX, MO, KS, OK, MS, LA, CO.  We love to collaborate with our network of equine rescues and rescuers to help extend our reach and rescue more donkeys and equine through teamwork.


Who We Are And What We Do

Donkeys come to the rescue from a variety of difficult situations. We rescue them from the slaughter pipeline:  auctions, kill buyers, and traders.  Sadly, donkeys are taken across the border and slaughtered for meat and for their hides.  We also try to intercept donkeys before they get into the slaughter pipeline through ads for free or low-cost donkeys that traders and kill buyers often prey on unsuspecting owners by deceiving them into believing that they will give them a loving home.  In addition, we have taken in donkeys and mules from abuse and neglect situations as well as from animal control seizures or intakes at their request. 


We also have a “Safety Net Program” whereby we take in owner surrenders with no questions asked to keep their donkeys out of auctions or out of reach of traders and kill buyers.  We do not judge the owners even if the donkeys come to us in poor condition.  We keep their information private.  It has become increasingly hard for people to reach out for help for fear of being ridiculed which sadly happens all to often when the owner is trying to do the right thing for the donkeys.  This treatment only prolongs the animals suffering.  Life circumstances can change quickly, and people need to feel safe asking for help.  Our safety net program provides a safe landing for donkeys of owners who truly love them but can no longer take care of them for a variety of reasons:  old age, death of owner, physical and mental health conditions, financial crisis, divorce, relocation for job or family emergency, and many more.  There are many different reasons that owners find themselves searching for a new home for their long-eared friends, and our goal is to make that search easier on everyone and provide comfort that we will protect their beloved long-ears for the rest of their lives.


Education is a big part of our mission.  Donkeys and mules are very misunderstood and have distinct differences in their veterinary care, handling, and training.  We work with the local veterinary university to teach vet students through on hands training, how to anesthetize and castrate donkeys and mules as there are very important differences than what is required for horses.  We work with individual owners through phone calls, texting, facebook messaging as well as providing on hands instruction at our rescue and in the homes and facilities of donkey and mule owners in our surrounding areas. We also provide education tours for anyone wanting to learn about donkeys.  We are in the process of setting up a UTube channel to discuss all things donkey in hopes of reaching a broader audience. All our education and training is done at no cost to the owners, potential owners/adopters, or individuals just wanting to learn more about donkeys and mules.


Turning Pointe Donkey Rescue is operated by 2 full-time staff and volunteers who are committed to Donkeys and giving them a second chance, a Turning Point, in their lives. We have a 501(c)(3) status as a tax-exempt non-profit organization, so donations are tax deductible to the extent of the law. All donations are used to rehabilitate and care for rescued donkeys and mules. We depend on donations to provide veterinary and farrier care, and feed for the donkeys that are rescued, until they can be matched with a forever home.


We have lofty goals for the future of our Rescue.  As we grow, we plan to add crisis intervention grant fund programs to help donkeys and mules stay in their loving homes when temporary crisis strikes.  A few of these grant programs include a hay/grain fund, emergency veterinary care fund, castration fund.


Turning Pointe Donkey Rescue 
(aka TPDR and/or the rescue) is a 
Michigan based non-profit organization 
dedicated to the health and welfare 
of miniature, standard and mammoth donkeys.

Through the rescue, we promote the 
humane care and proper training of 
these long ears. We strive to provide 
the public with a better understanding 
of their true nature.

Our efforts will be directed towards 
education of perspective and 
current donkey owners.

Donkeys come to the rescue from 
a variety of difficult situations. 
They will be matched with the most 
compatible, compassionate and 
supportive environment.