Overweight Tourists Are Crippling Donkeys in Greece

Jul 31, 2018

This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

Animal rights activists in Santorini, Greece, are saying that overweight tourists are crippling the island’s donkeys.

Santorini, with its iconic white homes and villas lining the hills, attracts millions of tourists each year. But the narrow streets — and areas with more than 600 steps — make it impossible to drive around in some parts. People often resort to riding a donkey or have the animal carry their bags.

Activist groups like Help the Santorini Donkeys, which has more than 17,700 followers, and The Donkey Sanctuary are saying enough is enough and are demanding the Municipality of Santorini to do something about it. The Help the Santorini Donkeys group created a petition advocating the end of animal abuse for the island’s equines and donkeys and has more than 68,000 signatures.

“These donkeys are forced to stand around in the sun in their own faces at the side of the path and all they do is go up and down, up and down carrying people who are too lazy to just walk or take cable car. In addition, the farmers give them lashings to make them go faster up the path when carrying tourists etc,” the petition reads.   

The Donkey Sanctuary, which rescues UK donkeys from neglect and abuse to an international animal welfare organization, works with 35 countries worldwide, has 10 sanctuaries around the UK and Europe and cares for more than 6,000 donkeys and mules.

“Poor quality saddles and bridles are often used, and safety guidelines are regularly ignored, placing tourists at risk of injury. Donkeys can be made to travel long distances in harsh climates and tough environments,” the charity explained on its webpage.

In a successful meeting on Saturday, the Municipality of Santorini met with representatives of animal welfare societies, animal rights group and animal owners and agreed to make aimed immediate changes and improve the welfare conditions of these animals progressively and steadily. The municipality decided to extend and improve shaded areas to protect the animals during Greece’s hot summer months, which average around 85 degrees Fahrenheit. Additionally, the Municipality of Thera will update the legislation regarding how much weight the animals can endure, which should be no more than 20% of its body weight.

Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card

Earn 90,000 bonus miles after you spend $3,000 in purchases within the first three months of card membership. Plus, earn a $200 statement credit after your first Delta purchase within the first three months. Offer ends 7/28/21.

With Status Boost™, earn 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, up to two times per year getting you closer to Medallion Status. Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels, 2X Miles at restaurants and at U.S. supermarkets and earn 1X Mile on all other eligible purchases. Terms Apply.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Limited Time Offer: Earn 90,000 Bonus Miles after spending $3,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months and a $200 statement credit after you make a Delta purchase with your new Card within your first 3 months. Offer expires 7/28/2021.
  • Limited Time Offer: Plus, get a 0% intro APR on purchases for 12 months from the date of account opening, then a variable 15.74%-24.74%. Offer expires 7/28/2021.
  • Accelerate your path to Medallion Status, with Status Boost®. Plus, in 2021 you can earn even more bonus Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) to help you reach Medallion Status.
  • Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels.
  • Earn 2X Miles at restaurants worldwide, including takeout and delivery and at U.S. supermarkets.
  • Receive a Domestic Main Cabin round-trip companion certificate each year upon renewal of your Card. *Payment of the government imposed taxes and fees of no more than $75 for roundtrip domestic flights (for itineraries with up to four flight segments) is required. Baggage charges and other restrictions apply. See terms and conditions for details.
  • Enjoy your first checked bag free on Delta flights.
  • Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®.
  • Enjoy an exclusive rate of $39 per person per visit to enter the Delta Sky Club® for you and up to two guests when traveling on a Delta flight.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees.
  • $250 Annual Fee.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees
Intro APR on Purchases
0% on purchases for 12 months
Regular APR
15.74%-24.74% Variable
Annual Fee
$250
Balance Transfer Fee
N/A
Recommended Credit
Excellent/Good
Terms and restrictions apply. See rates & fees.

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.