Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Mete Pete

Pasado's Safe Haven in Sultan, WA is one of my charities. I send them money, they send a thank-you note and I get quarterly issues of their newsletter. I get a warm fuzzy feeling knowing I'm supporting a compassionate shelter. And...I know my donation helps to continue the cutting edge animal cruelty legislation Pasado's spearheads on behalf of the critters.

A few years ago we decided to reduce the numbers of horses and llamas on our place in preparation for the 1600 mile exodus to New Mexico and our retirement home. I found homes for 3 horses and 5 llamas. We were whittled down to 2 miniature horses, an easy cargo for the long trek to the Southwest.

One evening in mid-December 2007, Bruce and I were chatting as we mucked stalls. He remarked, "Have you looked at the Holiday issue of the Pasado's newsletter that came the other day?" "Nah"...muck, muck, muck. Then, stone-faced, picker in hand, he paused and said, "Well, there's a little donkey in the newsletter. I think we could give him a home for Christmas!"

"WHAT?!" This is the man who'd "suggested" we take only the little guys to New Mexico. This is the guy who, I know, breathed a sigh of relief when the last llama was placed in a good home. Now he is willing to give a home to a donkey for Christmas? Who was I to question his kindness? "Sure, that sounds fine to me," I said calmly, all the time thinking, "YES!"

After a six page adoption application and final approval we went to "Mete Pete". He was darling and definitely a donkey. If you stood still for more than a few seconds, Pete would maneuver his head under your arm so you magically had your hand in a scratching position. He had learned all about treats and demanded them non-stop (we have since curbed that bad habit!).

We were told Pete's story (don't they all have one?):

Pete had been dumped into an 80 year old man's pasture, by his former owners, in the middle of the night. The gentleman had grass that needed eating and didn't mind the companionship so he let Pete stay. Unfortunately, what the man didn't have was the knowledge necessary to care for a donkey. He didn't provide shelter or veterinary or farrier care. Just grass, LOTS of grass. Pete's feet eventually looked atrocious. He couldn't stand to graze and would lie on the ground and eat around himself until he ran out of grass. He'd painfully hobble to another spot, plop down and start the cycle over.

Neighbors brought Pete's plight to the attention of Pasado's Safe Haven. Folks from Pasado's visited Pete and convinced the gentleman, now 83, they would find a good home for Pete if he was agreeable to giving him up. The day Pasado's picked Pete up they learned "Pete" was short for "Pistol Pete". He had been named after one of our country's real athletic heroes, LSU basketball player "Pistol Pete" Maravich (1947-1988). (Back when being a sports hero had something to do with playing well!) Maravich is still the leading NCAA Division 1 scorer with 3667 points scored and an average of 44.2 points per game.

Pete came home, to his forever home, in early January 2008. Just like his namesake he's a winner on our team and is quickly achieving rock star status. Thank you to Pasado's for making this funny little longears...ours.


Bruce Tuesday, May 19, 2009 4:18:00 PM  

That's my boy. I'm sure glad we brought him home.

the7msn Wednesday, May 20, 2009 6:33:00 AM  

What a great story! I'm likin' this Bruce guy more and more with every post. And as for Pete, what a lucky fellow to have found a forever home with you two. Can't wait to meet him in person!

penni Wednesday, May 20, 2009 10:06:00 AM  

Even though Pete put you over the limit, I think you should keep Bruce.

clairz Wednesday, March 16, 2011 11:58:00 AM  

Ah, this is a wonderful story! Glad you mentioned it.

"Pistol Pete" is the NMSU sports mascot, too!

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