He was, as far as we know, the world’s oldest donkey. Eeyore was just shy of his 55th birthday when he passed away peacefully last week at the Hunters Moon animal sanctuary in England.
Last year, when Eeyore’s previous guardian said she could no longer take care of him (she’d looked after him for 50 years), Selwyn Demmy, founder of the sanctuary, offered to take him in.
Eeyore, named after the rather gloomy Winnie the pooh character, was never a party animal – he preferred the quiet life. But he made instant friends with other animals at the sanctuary, especially the llama, Buttons.
Demmy, who, at age 79, is no spring chicken himself, runs the sanctuary through the profits he made from his business as a bookmaking tycoon.
“I take on all underprivileged animals here, despite what kind they are,” he said. “I do this on my own to help the animals. If for whatever reason I can’t keep them, such as they don’t get on with the other animals, I get them re-housed elsewhere.”
According to Guinness World Records, the oldest donkey in the world, named Suzy, was from New Mexico. She died in 2002 aged 54.
A donkey called Lively Laddie, who gave rides to children on the beach at Blackpool, on the English west coast, was said to have reached 62, although his age was never formally verified. He died in 2005.
Happy heavenly pastures, Eeyore!