Greece has banned obese tourists from riding donkeys after activists said the animals suffered spinal injuries. This decision comes after shocking images of lambs climbing the narrow steps of the Greek island of Santorini with obese vacationers on their backs.
Greek lawmakers have since pledged to do more to help animals.
The country’s Ministry of Rural Development and Food has released a new set of regulations regarding donkey welfare after receiving several complaints following the July media coverage.
State donkeys who drive tourists to Santorini should not carry a load greater than 100 kg, one-fifth of their weight.
As a result, animal activists on the island claimed that donkeys were forced to carry increasingly heavy loads while working long hours, seven days a week, without shelter, without rest and without water, leaving them with spinal injuries and open sores due to poorly fitting stools.
Santorini is known for its steep terrain and donkeys have always been used to transport people to the famous stepped areas that vehicles can not access, such as in the capital Fira.