When a young girl called Amber met her therapy donkey Shocks, neither of them had any idea how much they’d influence each others lives.
Immediately bonding over the rough starts they both had in life, this duo were set to make drastic changes and form a friendship like no other.
Shocks the donkey was discovered with a rope tied around his neck, and the effects of being tethered had caused lesions and sores to cover his skin. Thankfully, he was rescued and taken to The Donkey Sanctuary in Birmingham, England where he would later be introduced to Amber in 2013.
When Amber first met Shocks she was unable to make a single sound. Unlike most births, Amber and her sister were born prematurely and Amber was rushed away to have a surgery that would save her life. Sadly the consequence of this surgery cut off the airflow from her vocal chords and made her mute.
Not only was she mute, but Amber also had cerebral palsy which made it very hard for her to move around.
She may not have been gifted with a normal start in life, but Amber’s life was about to change for the better.
“It was fairly immediate to see they had a bond together, as they were both so gentle with each other,” Amber’s mom Austwick recalled. “They really seemed smitten!”
As if by magic, the girl’s muscles became stronger and her health improved drastically. Shortly after Amber had another surgery with the hope that it would bring back her ability to speak, and it wasn’t long before Amber spoke her first words: “I love you, Shocky.”
“It was such a proud moment and of course a massive relief to know that she could speak,” Austwick remembers. “I’d say they healed each other.”
Amber wasn’t gifted with the same start in life like most other children, but she was a fighter and refused to give up on living a great life.
Amber looks super happy whilst cuddling her plush donkey toy, although nothing compares to her therapy donkey and real life best friend Shocks.
All images curtesy of Amber’s Donkey.