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Old 07-29-2011, 11:34 AM  
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Male Horse, Female Donkey?

My Uncle has just called me with a question about a "mule" baby. He has recently purchased a female donkey that was bred to a male horse. I have heard very little about this, and was unsure what to tell him. Will this baby the the same as a mule, and is it even possible for it to happen?
Information please!!!
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Old 07-29-2011, 12:39 PM  
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Yes, it's possible ! But, when the breeding is done that way, the offspring is called a hinny, which is less common than a mule http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hinny. A mule is the result of a male donkey breeding a female horse http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mule.

Any idea of when the foal would be due?
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Old 07-29-2011, 03:32 PM  
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yup its a hinny. Depending on the size of the jennet the hinny might be a tad smaller than mule since jennets are usually smaller than mares.

I've also read that their faces are a bit more horselike than a mule, and their ears a tad shorter than a mules, but still longer than a horses.

click on the wikipedia link on alberta's post, theres a cool thing about 'dragon foals' that are 75% donkey and 25% horse. crazy
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Old 08-07-2011, 12:39 AM  
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I'm actually thinking about the idea of breeding my Jenny to a Pony colt in a couple of years.
And yes, the results would be a Hinny.
Penny is a large standard, about 11 1/2 hands, so I figure a pony would be ideal as a mate.
Might have to do AI though, as I'm told that few pony stallions will normally mate with a donkey.
Plenty of time to think about that though.
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Old 08-07-2011, 12:47 AM  
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From what I've read, the hinny is a lot harder to get than a mule because the jenny's body is more resistant to foreign protein (sperm from another species) than is the mare's. So be sure you get a guarantee of a live birth which ever way you decide to go.
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Old 08-07-2011, 12:53 AM  
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From what I've read, the hinny is a lot harder to get than a mule because the jenny's body is more resistant to foreign protein (sperm from another species) than is the mare's. So be sure you get a guarantee of a live birth which ever way you decide to go.
Hmm, I have not seen that info. will have to research it a bit more.
I'm fairly new to long ears myself, was never actually around any before last march.
I have ben around horses a bit at various times.
Still learning new stuff at 72
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Old 08-07-2011, 06:03 AM  
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From what I've seen a hinny takes on more characteristics of a donkey whereas the mule is more like a horse.
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Old 08-07-2011, 07:49 AM  
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You have to consider the imprinting by the mom. Packers and military needed an animal that would be managable and work well with horses, besides being strong. A mule is almost almost submissive to horses and bonds closely with a mare. When gathering up the pack mules early in the day (dark), all the army had to do was gather the bell mares and her string of mules would follow. If a packer pickets the bell mare, the mules can be let free and they won't wander far. This characteristic is highly valuable when working with large numbers of animals.
From what I understand, hinneys tend to be more independently minded than mules - more like their donkey moms. They are usually smaller as well, so not as valuable as mules for heavy packing. However, that is not to say the hinneys cannot be top performers. I can't remember the name, but there was an article a while back on a top reiner mule which was actually a hinney.
So basically hinneys have 3 strikes against them (meaning reasons why they were not bred and used as much as mules) - smaller size, less apt to follow a horse's leadership, and difficulty breeding.
I have a friend who had a small hinney she used for driving - cute as a bug and very sweet.
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Old 08-07-2011, 12:02 PM  
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in the pic below I think the little one may be a Hinney. As the owner has a dun stud out with the herd of donkeys. They seem to reproduce just fine lol and then come to our house!



You can somewhat see the tail in this picture. I must have deleted all the other pics.
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Old 08-07-2011, 06:33 PM  
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Is the donkey the mom in that picture? The little one sure is cute. Is her tail more like a horse or a donkey? I've heard hinneys may have more of a donkey like tail.
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Old 08-07-2011, 06:37 PM  
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Aaaaah, that would explain it! I remember seeing the picture in the thread about them being lost and found. At the time I thought that little one looked just a bit odd from what I'm used to seeing for muley faces. I didn't think of a hinney. It seems oddly roundish to me. (Of course, the glowing eyes don't help its appearance much.)
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Old 08-07-2011, 08:30 PM  
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It has more of a donkey tail. And sorry for the glowing eyes lol, was using my moms camera and it insisted that it needed the flash. I will see if I have any back end pics of them. I didn't know about the Hinney thing so I called it a mule. I learned something new today

I think that may be a boy donkey, the owner is claiming that the stud and boy donks are fighting and that's why they are going through the fence....
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Old 08-07-2011, 08:43 PM  
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Can Hinney's reproduce?

And sorry for the giant pic
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Old 08-07-2011, 11:26 PM  
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Nope. Hinneys are sterile, as are mules. However, they still have all the equipment and hormones. The females come into heat and the males need to be gelded. The sterile part comes from getting 32 chromosomes (half of 64) from the horse and 31 (half of 62) from the donkey. That leaves the mule with a total count of 63. 63 is not divisible by 2, so they are not able to split off an even number to pass on in the meiosis process (remember BIO 101?). HOWEVER, every once in a great while a mule actually has a foal. What happens is that she is somehow able to split off the horse mare half and if bred to a stallion, the baby can be geneticallly 100% horse.

BTW, the first equine clones were mule triplets!
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Old 08-08-2011, 07:53 PM  
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hmm and I learn even more. Thanks for the info and sorry for stealing the thread OP.
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Old 08-09-2011, 09:21 AM  
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Nope. Hinneys are sterile, as are mules. However, they still have all the equipment and hormones. The females come into heat and the males need to be gelded. The sterile part comes from getting 32 chromosomes (half of 64) from the horse and 31 (half of 62) from the donkey. That leaves the mule with a total count of 63. 63 is not divisible by 2, so they are not able to split off an even number to pass on in the meiosis process (remember BIO 101?). HOWEVER, every once in a great while a mule actually has a foal. What happens is that she is somehow able to split off the horse mare half and if bred to a stallion, the baby can be geneticallly 100% horse.

BTW, the first equine clones were mule triplets!
That is so cool! Do you have any more info on that or links to pics? You just blew my mind.
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Old 08-09-2011, 04:55 PM  
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If you google "mule gives birth" you will find several cases of mules who had babies. A recent one is in the Denver Post, 7/26/2007. It's a pretty informative article with pictures, too. It explains what happens and is called "hemiclonal transmission," meaning that the mare's genes cancel out the stud's genes. A mule bred to a horse may produce a horse (mare genes plus stallion genes), but when bred to a jack may produce a mule (mare plus jack). Kind of interesting, too, that the Romans had a saying, "cum mula peperit," meaning "when a mule foals," or in other words, "when hell freezes over."
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Old 08-10-2011, 11:59 AM  
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If you google "mule gives birth" you will find several cases of mules who had babies. A recent one is in the Denver Post, 7/26/2007. It's a pretty informative article with pictures, too. It explains what happens and is called "hemiclonal transmission," meaning that the mare's genes cancel out the stud's genes. A mule bred to a horse may produce a horse (mare genes plus stallion genes), but when bred to a jack may produce a mule (mare plus jack). Kind of interesting, too, that the Romans had a saying, "cum mula peperit," meaning "when a mule foals," or in other words, "when hell freezes over."
Thanks! That was some very interesting reading, absolutely fascinating.
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