Karoo Donkey Sanctuary
- Plettenberg Bay, South Africa
- Verified 2023-01-31
- Volunteer positions available.
- This sanctuary offers animal adoptions.
- This sanctuary offers tours.
Founded in 2015 by Jonno Sherwin on his private 17 hectare lifestyle farm in the picturesque village of Prince Albert in the arid Great Karoo region, severe prolonged drought in the area forced a mas-relocation and in March 2021, the sanctuary found a new home in The Crags, outside Plettenberg Bay on South Africa’s magical coastal Garden Route. From a life of dust and semi-desert topography, the new facility offers 70 hectares of lush grazing and ample natural water.
With the Chinese demand for donkey skins and the resultant theft, brutal bush-slaughter and skinning of donkeys across Africa that seemed to reach its crescendo in late 2016; the vast majority of our rescued donkeys were acquired via crowd funding at an auction for slaughter in January 2017 that took place in Hartswater in the Northern Cape province of South Africa. Over 500 emaciated, maimed and knife-branded donkeys and in the region of 150 horses went under the hammer by body-weight that fateful day.
It is our belief that all the donkeys had either been stolen or forcibly acquired by illegal traders in the underground donkey skins trade and that the auction was the result of a significant skins deal having been intervened. We were able to save 236 donkeys that day and while we had never had horses in our care, public donations and an outcry by the equine world availed our also saving 36 emaciated horses that were destined for the horse-meat industry.
All donations towards our crusade will go directly towards assisting us with the sustainable care of all the animals at our facility that are in need of permanent sanctuary.