I spoke to my brother today, who happens to live on a ranch in Eastern Washington State. (They have compost to die for over there, which is the only link to gardening that this post contains, but just bear with me, okay?) He has a wide assortment of different animals on the farm, including some horses and a couple of mules.
We had an interesting conversation, and I thought it would make for an informative post the next time you happen to come across some mules and want to make a good impression on them.
We present . . .
These tips are tested tips. The participants in this particular study are seen below:
The cute redhead on the left is Lady the mule. The black mule beast center stage is Mulysses S. Grant, and the piebald to the right is Grady the horse (don’t let the shortness of the ear’s appearance on the mules fool you–it’s just the angle at which this photo was taken–trust me, the two on the left are indeed mules.) Those conducting the research were my brother and my nephew, Charlie.
This is what they determined, after running several tests with this group of willing participants:
Mule Tip #1: Mules like peanut butter sandwiches. At least one of these tests was done using sourdough bread. Is it the flavor of the flour grain, the peanut butter, or what that appealed to them? Who knows–they’re not talkin’. They were not given any milk to wash the sandwiches down, either.
Mule Tip #2: One out of two mules likes peanut butter and chocolate chip cookies. This is apparently not a taste treat for every mule, but for those who enjoy it, it’s a winner.
Mule Tip #3: One out of two mules likes blue Jolly Ranchers. If it’s not blue, apparently it’s a deal breaker, but Lady the mule dined on these with apparent relish.
Mule Tip #4: No mules like cheese. If you want to disgust a mule, feed it cheese. The test participants were lulled into thinking this was something they would like by the presence of bread in a cheese sandwich, but they became very disgruntled by the aftertaste of the cheese. They stuck their upper lips into the sky, as well as their tongues to show their displeasure. Maybe it wasn’t their preferred brand or type of cheese–further testing may need to be conducted, but it will apparently take a lot to convince these test subjects to give it a second try.
Grady the horse has a less discerning appetite than the mules. He prefers green grass, with apples and carrots mixed in for treats now and then, and he’s good with that.
We may bring you other Mule Tips in the future, as well as feature certain others of my brother’s large barnyard menagerie.
Stay tuned, and put these mule tips to good use the next time you meet a mule in your travels.
Till next time,
I’m participating at: