Judge hopes Derry death row donkey can be rehomed
Derry City and Strabane District Council has been granted a court order to either rehome or have put down a donkey found abandoned in a field earlier this year.
The animal was discovered in poor health and with severely overgrown hooves in a field at Crockmore Road in Claudy last January.
A council solicitor told Deputy District Judge Brian Archer at the Magistrates Court yesterday that an animal welfare officer who was alerted to the condition of the donkey placed a notice on the gate leading to the field as part of his efforts to locate the owner.
However, when the animal welfare officer, accompanied by a vet, returned to the field several days later on January 20, the notice was still in place.
The solicitor said it was not possible to ascertain the owner's identity, and he added that the animal was currently in temporary council care.
The solicitor applied for a court order to enable the council to rehome the donkey in an animal shelter.
Failing that, he said the donkey would have to be euthanised.
The Deputy District Judge said a friend of his, a solicitor, worked with a charity-based donkey rehoming shelter.
He said in granting the council's application for the order he hoped it would be possible to re-home the donkey in an animal welfare shelter, rather than have it destroyed.
"I am sure the council will make all the efforts it can to rehome this unfortunate animal and that it will not be necessary to have it put down," he said.