Ending unnecessary suffering
A muleteer’s mule is his livelihood, enabling him to work and provide for his family. Understandably they are keen to prevent their mules from wandering away where they could get lost or hurt. To prevent this, the mule is often tethered – tied off to a tree by one leg.
Plastic, nylon and chain tethers are sometimes used as they are cheap and durable. However these materials are very rough on the mules skin, made worse when the tether is too tight and too short.
Many mules you see will have a white or hairless band around their legs. Some even have open sores around the entire leg. This is a friction burn from the tether. There can also be unseen damage to the tendons underneath.
We are aiming to minimise the amount of time mules are tethered for. When they do need to be tethered we will make sure they have access to shade from the hot Moroccan sun, and water when they need it. It is important the mule is still free to stand up and lay down when tethered.
We are supporting training for the muleteers in mule care which includes better tethering practices and the use of humane tethers.
We are promoting an initiative to introduce humane tethers.
Using old donated climbing rope the local Women’s Cooperative have been making tethers that are wide, covered in soft leather and non constrictive.
Our teams have been distributing these to local muleteers who are happy to have a strong, secure alternative that will not injure their mules.
We love how this part of the project involves the local women, the muleteers, and the climbing community.
If you have any old climbing rope then please get in touch, we will gladly take it off your hands and put it to very good use.