Generally speaking, miniature donkeys are “easy keepers" and may be used for many things. On the farm, donkeys have traditionally been used for plowing, hauling heavy loads, pulling wagons, and protecting livestock. Although smaller in stature, mini-donkeys do all these things, with proper training and some adjustments for their size. They also make wonderful pets. With free access to shelter, they pretty much take care of themselves. You won’t have to go get them and bring them into the barn if it storms, they will come in on their own. If they have green grass to eat, they generally don’t need additional feed. So, providing water for them is the main concern during the warmer months of the year. In colder months, or whenever there is not enough green grass for them to eat, you will need to supplement their diet with a grain mix and/or hay. Miniature donkeys should have annual vaccine shots. You will need to consult a veterinarian to find out which vaccines are recommended for your area. Although mini donkeys are very hardy and have few health problems, it is always wise to have an association with a local veterinarian who will be available to treat your donkeys if necessary. Also, your donkeys will need regular worming and hoof trimming. Worming is easy. You can buy equine worm paste at most feed stores. It is administered by mouth, according to weight, approximately every 3 months. Regarding hoof trimming, most people can learn to do the trimming themselves if they want to do so. However, you might want to call a professional farrier. A farrier is a person who studies equine hooves and anatomy and knows how to properly trim your donkey’s feet or treat problems. Something else to keep in mind is that a donkey’s environment will affect its daily needs. For instance, in very wet areas, you may need to keep your donkeys inside part of the time to keep their hooves healthy. Or, in spring when there is lush green grass, you may need to keep your donkeys penned part of the time so they won’t get too fat. In conclusion, whether used for work or as pets, responsible owners will be attentive to the health and welfare of their donkeys.