July 22, 2004
If mules could talk, LaVonda would surely thank her caregivers.
LaVonda spent most of her 33 years working as a pack mule with the Payson Forest Service, carrying supplies for range technicians fighting forest fires.
Wildhorse Ranch Rescue in Gilbert adopted LaVonda upon her retirement. Earlier this summer, she became sick and almost had to be put down.
The ranch spent nearly $3,000 for medical treatments to pull LaVonda through her illness. Although the mule is doing better, the ranch is now hurting.
"We’ve already paid the vet bills, so now we’re broke," said Kim Meagher, president of the Gilbert ranch. "We need all the help we can get."
To raise money, the ranch is selling raffle tickets for a chance to win a baby pygmy goat named Skippy, who was adopted last weekend.
For $10, folks can enter three people into the raffle for a chance to win the goat. However, those people can buy "goat insurance" to get out of the raffle.
The raffle’s winner gets the goat and a T-shirt, but for a $10 donation, the ranch will take the goat back.
"Of course if someone wants to give it a good home, that can happen too," Meagher said.
The drawing will be Aug. 27 to coincide with LaVonda’s 34th birthday party.
All raffle participants will be listed at the ranch’s Web site. To enter the raffle or buy goat insurance, visit www.mudpony.com or call (480) 926-1795.
Meagher also assures that no goat will be harmed in the process of this raffle.