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We'll Miss You, Eeyore

A much loved miniature burro in our sanctuary dies

The Humane Society of the United States / The Fund for Animals


    Eeyore was a miniature burro who lived at the Cleveland Amory Black Beauty Ranch in east Texas. /HSUS

  • Over the years, The Fund for Animals rescued thousands of burros from being rounded up and killed by the federal government. Eeyore was one of those burros. Michelle Riley/HSUS


    Eeyore, left, had a special bond with long-time resident Scar, middle, and Friendly, a ranch icon and possibly the last of the original group of burros rescued in 1979 and brought to the sanctuary. Michelle Riley/HSUS


    Eeyore died earlier this month, leaving a hole in the hearts of those who knew him. J.P. Bonnelly

Eeyore was a miniature burro who came to the Cleveland Amory Black Beauty Ranch at least 15 years ago. He was one of thousands of wild burros to be rescued over the years from public lands by The Fund for Animals, an affiliate of The Humane Society of the United States.

Without the intervention of The Fund and its founder, Cleveland Amory, the burros were destined to be rounded up by the federal government and killed.

Eeyore, while a bit of a loner who sometimes patrolled the sanctuary grounds on his own, endeared himself to everyone he met. There were those who thought he looked sad—which may be true from afar—but up close, his lips were drawn up into a sweet grin.

We’ll miss our friend who died suddenly and peacefully earlier this month of age-related causes. Eeyore is buried near the memorial for Amory, who died in 1998. Read Mike's message»


Holly, sanctuary office manager

I once heard a story about Eeyore and a young boy who came to visit.  The boy, who was about 4 years old, walked up to Eeyore and put his arms around him. They took their tour as buddies, walking arm over neck the entire time. If the little boy thought a rock was interesting, so did Eeyore. 

Another time, we had a few children come for a tour. They saw horses, and chimps, and buffalo and at the end of the day, I asked them who they loved the best. Their response was a cheerful “EEYORE!”  I can’t blame them; he was gentle and sweet and a friend to us all. 

Being relatively new to the ranch, I hadn’t known him nearly as long as the rest of the staff, but I miss him very much. 

Pamela, volunteer

Eeyore used to love to follow the equine groomers around, especially on the grooming training days. He knew treats were never far behind.

We had to keep an eye on our grooming tools and any treat bags because he would get into them looking to steal a treat. He would deliberately hang out until the end of each grooming, knowing that we couldn't give treats to just one animal in the vicinity. 

I once had to pull his head out of the treats bag, which resulted in a new rule to all groomers:

Keep treats in the visitors center until all grooming is complete, and if you have treats with you, keep them out of reach of Eeyore. He was a very lovable rascal.

Dawna, sanctuary caretaker

Eeyore had a tendency to want to be where he wasn’t. If he was on the inner acreage, he wanted to be in the pasture. Any one of the staff who saw him standing firmly, gazing out, would open the gate and set him free. Later, after socializing with the population roaming on the largest part of 1200-plus acres, he would return to one of many gates leading back to the center hubbub of the visitor center open area.

His best friends were Friendly and Scar; they were often seen in a secret huddle. Although Eeyore was gelded, he tended to be the lover boy, often romancing, or at least pretending to, the jennies, all of whom were bigger than him by far. Our sweet demeanor and inquisitive little friend will be missed by us all.

Diane, sanctuary director

Eeyore = a tremendous amount of sweetness and love in a tiny package. We'll forever remember his tiger-striped legs, soft gray muzzle, and gentle soul.

Deb, HSUS animal care centers director

Eeyore was often found trailing behind Friendly and Scar, two of the first burro residents of the sanctuary. Eeyore would patiently wait his turn for affection, unassuming and reserved, but once he had your attention, he leaned into you with a gentle pressure that laid claim to your heart.

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