POITOU DONKEY (Equus asinus)

Domestic donkey – a descendant of African wild donkeys, an equine soliped.  

Breed was created in the early 18th century in the Poitou region of France.

Distribution: France, Great Britain, zoos in the USA, Canada.

The first Poitou donkeys in the „Rakši” were imported from France in March 2018.

Weight: 300-540 kg

Height at the shoulders: for male 152 cm, for female 135 cm

Life Span: 35 years (camel – 50, horse – 28, human – 79)

Gestation:  11-14 months


* Donkeys were domesticated 3000-6000 years ago in Egypt or Mesopotamia.

* Today, there are about 44,000,000 domestic donkeys in the world, of which only about 1,000 are Poitou.

* Poitou donkeys are preserved as an outstanding and beautiful historical breed of donkeys.

* At one time they were widely used for obtaining especially good super mules (donkey and horse crossbreeds).

* Almost disappeared when, due to technical advances, mule breeding ended.

*In 1977, only 44 such donkeys were left.

* Used for riding, carrying loads, drawing carts, plowing, threshing.

* Rarely, but still grown for meat or milk.

* Extremely high risk of extinction.


* In France acknowledged as a national treasure.

* Huge stature and shaggy coat that looks like dreadlocks.

* Mane can grow up to the ground.

* Coat color varies from brown to almost black.

* Usually it is necessary to get rid of mane in the name of hygiene.

* Due to a special gene mutation, mane can be gorgeous even if the donkey is Poitou only for 1/8.

* Is more stronger than a horse of the same size.

* The position of the eyes allows him to see all four of his legs at the same time.

* There are rings of other colors around the eyes and muzzle.

* character is very friendly and submissive.

* They are not stubborn, but may decide not to do something that seems unsafe.

* In France, on the island Ré, every morning pants are put on donkeys – they protect against insect bites.