A mule, terrified and exhausted, is rescued by the Fondouk team, after he fell in a manhole

I’ve often said no two days are alike at American Fondouk. After the events of the day, I’m sure you’ll understand why we don’t want this to happen to another animal ever again!

Here’s what happened…

A mule who had been treated at American Fondouk for respiratory problems had been picked up by his owner and they were traveling home. Since the man lived 12.5 miles away and couldn’t afford to rent a truck, he’d ridden his only other mule to retrieve his recovered mule.

Not used to the noise of the city, the mule the owner was riding got scared and made a backward turn, forcing the recovered mule to fall backwards into an open manhole!

I’m sure you can imagine the animal’s instant fear and panic!

A police officer who witnessed the incident told a nearby boy to run to the Fondouk and get help. Fondouk staff members came quickly and took charge of the rescue.

First, a tranquilizer was administered to calm the frightened animal. Then a man was lowered into the hole to pass two ropes around the mule’s hindquarters. A carpet was used as protective padding between the flanks of the mule and the rope.

With the help of onlookers, eight people used all their strength to pull the 882 pound animal from the hole!

The mule was brought back to the Fondouk, where our veterinarians treated the mule for some leg injuries. After anti-inflammatory medication, food, water and rest, the mule was able to stand!

The desperate owner was grateful the Fondouk was able to rescue and provide the care his mule needed.


But, most importantly, saving that mule also saved his family!

As you know, mules like this one are a lifeline for poor working families in Morocco. Without his precious animal, the owner could not have completed daily life-sustaining activities. And, when crops are not harvested or goods do not reach the market, families are left without food on the table.

Because our loyal supporters care so deeply about the welfare of working animals, American Fondouk is able to provide free veterinary care for animals who would otherwise suffer and often die from preventable illnesses and injuries.

Of course, we don’t see dramatic scenes like this one every day. But, it’s good to know that when emergencies arise, American Fondouk will be there to help. Even better, the daily veterinary care we’re able to provide, thanks to our supporters, helps treat and save thousands of hard-working animals — and the families who depend on them — every year!

Knowing we can depend on our supporter really does mean the difference between life and death for animals. If you’d like to make a gift today to the support the hard-working animals of Fez, please click here.

–Dr. Gigi Kay Director

P.S. The lives of the horses, mules and donkeys we treat are often difficult and your gift of any size means they can work without pain, be free from illness and provide for the families who depend on them each day.

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