Dogs and cats may be more affectionate companions, but Bart the donkey has been around for as long as Lynda Lennox’s adult grandchildren can remember. That has to count for something.
Bart has lived with Lennox and her husband Richard on Scheuber Road near Centralia for around 27 years. The duo owns Cascade Trader, a logging equipment company.
Bart was gifted to them by Shawn and Andie Hamilton, who also lived on Scheuber Road, after they had him for two years. The Hamiltons purchased Bart at a livestock auction and their guess is at the time, he was about 7 years old.
By this rough estimate, Bart is at least 36, and very possibly older. The average donkey lives to about 27 years, though they have been known to live to 40 years or more.
“I don’t know anything special about him, but he’s special to us,” Lennox said. “He’s sweet. Whenever we have anybody around he wants to be right in the middle of whatever is going on.”
She added he’s a sociable animal who brays every morning when he realizes his owners are out and about.
At his advanced age, Bart nearly didn’t make his scheduled interview with The Chronicle, according to Lennox.
“We thought he was going to die,” she said, referring to a recent day where Bart was not standing up.
After an appointment with a farrier, he has been on a slight upswing. Still, he has yet to be quite like himself, according to Lennox. The grizzled ass is accompanied by a rescue pony named Little Bit. Both are kept solely as companions and good entertainment for the couple and are spoiled by alfalfa and carrot treats regularly.
While Lennox says Little Bit is a “pill,” the pony does love Bart. On occasion, the two beasts have escaped their fence, but Lennox just needs to get ahold of Bart to get Little Bit to follow.
“He’s not going to last a whole lot longer, but he’s had a good long life,” Lennox said.
If you or someone you know has a donkey older than Bart, or any old creature worthy of an article, email firstname.lastname@example.org.