A local rescue is working hard at finding homes for animals who have been left behind. This time it's not horses that need the help, it's donkeys.
The word donkey has been associated with ignorance for hundreds of years, and at times, their namesakes are treated the same way.
"We've fallen in love with the breed," said Scott Shehan, Vice President of Lusco Farms.
Shehan and his family have set up a donkey rescue in Malvern, Iowa.
Scott Shehan says they started with a horse rescue, but quickly saw the need to find good homes for neglected donkeys. There are over 2,000 rescue donkeys in the U.S., he says.
His family run farm is fostering 6 of them between the ages of 3-and-8, some of which were abandoned after a producer sold off their herd of cattle.
"The donkeys really are very affectionate and loving animals and it's just unfortunate there's no other value for them other than companionship and I think that's whey they're left out," said Shehan.
There are 16 satellite locations for Peaceful Valley Donkey Rescue, the Shehans operate the only one in the Midwest, the nearest one being more than 400 miles away, near Oklahoma City.
Scott's daughter, Stephanie Shehan says she initially thought the animals were stubborn, but quickly changed her tune. "I fell in love with their personalities, they're sweet natured, they're hilarious, they have a sense of humor."
Now the family says it's time to find good homes for some of the rescued donkeys. "Maybe a family that's wanting an equine, but not wanting the cost of an actual horse or the upkeep of a horse. A donkey is a much cheaper animal to have and raise," said Scott Shehan.
On Sunday, October 30th, the Shehans are having an open house for anyone who's interested in adopting a donkey, or helping foster an animal.
It starts at 11 a.m. in Malvern.
To learn more about the Shehan's rescued donkeys, check out their Web site.