Can a donkey safely eat a human finger?

Is it a given that a donkey will choke to death if it attempts to eat a human finger? Would a donkey even have any interest in eating a human finger?

Do you have any cites or links to anything that suggests that this is a commonly-held belief, or a “given”? I have never heard of this donkey/finger/choking thing.

This is apparently a plot point in a recent Oscar-nominated movie. I haven’t see the movie, so I don’t know if it’s a major spoiler. I’m going to flag this in the hope that a mod has seen the movie and will know.

Or if anyone else has seen the movie maybe they could contact a mod to figure out what to do if just asking the question is a huge spoiler.

If this is about the sign we have in our barn, it’s a joke. My gf has a sign she bought that says something like “Please do not feed horses your fingers, they will choke”.

If this is a factual question, the factual answer is “no”.

Was this question prompted by some news article? I would have assumed

  1. a donkey is a vegetarian and is not especially interested in eating a human finger
  2. if they happened to try, it would do them no harm.

I have read that deer, who have a great need for calcium when they grow new antlers, have been known to eat the bones from birds who had been trapped (so the deer could get at them). Hmm, this says that deer eating birds is more common than I realized.

Researchers Document Deer Eating Birds | Field & Stream (

Moderator Note

This thread may contain spoilers for a recent movie (2022) from this point onward.

I haven’t seen the movie, but this is a reference to the recent movie The Banshees of Inisherin.

There is a problem in equids called “choke”. In fact, my gf had a very old gelding that had choke several times in his later years. Some old horses reach a point where they can no longer chew their food due to dental attrition.

Her horse “Mac” was thirty something and could no longer eat regular food. We fed a special diet that we added water to make a soup. Every so often he would suck down his soup too fast and a bolus would lodge in his esophagus. It was my job to pass a tube into his nostril and down his esophagus, using water and force to move the bolus along.

The vet taught me how to do this and how to insure I was in the esophagus and not the trachea. She said the final determination I’d done it correctly was noting whether the horse seemed happy and relieved after I was done, or dead.

Your vet obviously didn’t read chapter 9:

“Safe” for whom, I wonder.

Need answer fast?

It definitely would be risky for a zebra to ingest a human arm.

Can a society become ill or die because of internal divisions? Sometimes a cigar is a penis.
ETA: FQ; not Cafe. Sorry.

Horse eats a live baby chicken (15 seconds, not gory): Horse eats baby chick - YouTube

Deer eats bird (1:30, a bit more graphic): Deer eating a Bird - YouTube

I did always wonder if the warning about scorpions was ever getting through to the frog community.

Would eating a human finger hold any appeal to a donkey? Do donkeys eat just about anything in front of them (like, say, goats)?

Or, to put it another way, do donkeys eat meat?

Donkeys do bite. I’d be more worried about the other end.


Goats do NOT “eat everything”.

Donkeys like other equids are vegetarians. They may bite you but that would be in anger, not hunger.

I don’t think a finger would actually poison a donkey.

Choke. Not poison. Have you seen the size of Brenden Gleeson’s fingers?

Okay, sure, choke. Horses are bigger than donkeys, usually, and they can choke on a carrot. Horses can’t vomit, probably donkeys can’t either.

My mother owned a standardbred trotting horse, that prior to her ownership, had bitten a man’s finger off. He (the horse) spit it right out, but that didn’t really do the man any good.