Representatives of the NGO, RESQ Charitable Trust, said her video was watched by many people on Facebook and Instagram.
Tina Mohandas from the NGO’s communications team told TOI that Emily (the donkey) was found on the streets of Pune in a critical condition after she had delivered a baby. “When we found her, she could barely stand and her baby had died. We rushed her to the RESQ centre, where we began her treatment. Initially, Emily was extremely skittish and aggressive. She did not like people or other animals around her, and was clearly in emotional pain, besides physical pain.”
It took persistent efforts to heal Emily. “Today, Emily gets along well with other donkeys at RESQ, and shows us the trust and love by breaking into a song,” said Mohandas. Recently, Harriet, a donkey, became a sensation in Ireland after a local resident posted a video of her singing on a social media site.
Neha Panchamiya, the president of RESQCT, said while she cannot offer any medical or scientific explanation as to why some donkeys sing but it seems that they break into a tune when they are very happy.
“Emily is extremely fond of food, and if is she is offered her favourite treats, she tends to serenade in the only way she can, which we believe is her way of saying thank you, and I love you,” said Panchamiya.
Veterinarian Jeya Bharath, who specialises in treating equines (mammals of the horse family), said, “Every animal has a way of expressing its emotions. In case of a horse, it bumps and runs, kicking the air with its fours when it is happy. Dogs run round and round when they are happy. This particular donkey must have developed a peculiar way of expressing its emotion by producing a sonorous sound while braying.”
Milind Hatekar, a veterinary physician in the city, said, “Such sounds show that the animal is expressing happiness over something. Even horses tend to produce a typical musical neigh when happy, unlike their typical neighing sound.”