Donkey Hurt in Dragging 'Doing Good'

By: Houston Chronicle
By: Houston Chronicle

A young donkey is recovering from her injuries after a Splendora man allegedly tied her to the back of his SUV Oct. 25 and dragged her behind it, and a Conroe woman who visited the donkey three days later has set up a donations page for its feed and veterinarian bills.

Marc Richard Saunders, 30, of Splendora, was arrested and, as of Oct. 31, remains in the Montgomery County Jail on no bond, charged with felony cruelty to animals.

After learning the donkey, named Susie Q, had gotten out of his property and was wandering loose, Saunders went to retrieve the animal. The person who found the 2-year-old donkey secured her. Saunders and another man went to get her, and Saunders allegedly tied her with a rope to the tailgate of his SUV.

At first, the other man told Precinct 4 Livestock Deputy Constable Dwayne Morrow, Saunders drove the SUV slowly enough so Susie Q could keep up. However, Saunders allegedly sped up and the donkey sat down, straightening her front legs to try and stop.

Saunders then allegedly sped up as the other man pleaded with him to stop, and Susie Q fell over onto the road pavement on Acorn Hill Drive. The other man estimated Saunders was driving at a speed of approximately 40 miles per hour.

About 1.5 to 2 inches of Susie Q’s hooves were ground off, according to a Precinct 4 Constable’s release, exposing raw flesh and bone.

When Saunders stopped, the witness said, he walked to the back of the vehicle and when he saw the injured donkey, Saunders allegedly unhooked her rope from the SUV and fled.

Bonita DeRosa went to visit the donkey, who is back with her owners, and said the family loves Susie Q and wants to keep her.

“They decided to build her an enclosure,” she said. “The animal was getting out all the time.”

Susie Q is standing for brief periods, shifting her weight from side to side, DeRosa said.

“She’s very uncomfortable,” she said. “She’s eating and drinking a little.”

DeRosa also spoke with a veterinarian who stopped by Sunday to check on the donkey and help care for her – at no cost, DeRosa said -- and the veterinarian called another veterinarian to get the medications the donkey needs.

DeRosa has set up a donations page online to pay for Susie Q’s feed and veterinarian care, at http://helpingpets.chipin.com/donations-for-donkey.

All donations will go through PayPal to pay for Susie Q’s needs, DeRosa said.

“The good news is that Susie Q will recover from her injuries, but it will take time and many vet visits,” DeRosa states on the donations page. “The family is dedicated to helping their beloved pet get back on her feet though they know it will be a struggle.”

The goal for donations is $2,000, but that goal could change, DeRosa said, as Susie Q’s needs change.

DeRosa’s husband is a farrier – someone who shoes horses, mules and donkeys – and will make specialized shoes for Susie Q when she is able to stand for long periods.

“It is truly my pleasure to help Susie Q,” DeRosa said. “She is a very sweet donkey.”


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