Happy National Mule Day!

October 26, 2018

Photo 6867249 © Andrea Valle - Dreamstime.com

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Yes, there really is such a day! And it has been observed every October 26th since 1985. Why October 26th? Well, because the bill was signed exactly 200 years to the day that George Washington received a mule as a gift from from King Charles III of Spain. A male mule (known as a jack) that had made the trip from Europe on board the Spanish ship Royal Gift that was docked in Boston harbor.

Our first president so admired the mule (a cross between a horse and a donkey), that he became the first breeder of mules in America. Washington saw the mule as having the best traits from each of its parents. From the donkey, mules garner their strength, intelligence, patience, endurance, sure-footedness and even temper. Traits from the horse are the beauty, athletic ability, courage, vigor and speed.

Mule's get a bad rap as being stubborn, but that's not really the case. One of the more intelligent among the hoofed creatures, what may seem stubborn or lazy, is actually the sense to keep out of harm's way.