Target: Nikolaos Zorzos, Mayor of Santorini
Goal: Give working donkeys in Santorini minimum standards of welfare
The island of Santorini is a tourist hotspot for people venturing to Greece. However, it is also known for its donkeys and notorious for the cruelty that these animals suffer. Complaints have been rampant for years about the condition of the donkeys and the treatment from their drivers. A study last year found that these donkeys are still subject to abject lives and horrible mistreatment, despite numerous operations by animal welfare groups. Petition the Mayor of Santorini to take action, and protect these donkeys from neglect and misery.
As well as leisure rides, donkeys in Santorini operate as ‘taxis’, ferrying people and luggage around town. Not only do the donkeys have to carry many overweight people, but they are expected to carry cases of heavy luggage simultaneously. They are denied shade, water, and rest for hours at a time, leaving them exhausted and dehydrated. Medical care is something unheard of for most of these donkeys, and with poor quality equipment that cuts into their skin, these animals suffer horribly with their daily toil: treatment like this equivalent to cruelty.
We must persuade the Mayor of Santorini to take action and enforce standards for the donkeys’ welfare. Sign this petition to protect donkeys in Santorini from the neglect and cruelty they suffer on a daily basis.
Dear Mr. Zorzos,
After reading of the mistreatment that donkeys in Santorini suffer, I am compelled to write in their favor, and ask that you enforce minimum welfare standards on their behalf.
Donkeys in your town are subject to terrible neglect, which amounts to animal cruelty. They are denied shade, water, and rest for hours at a time in blistering heat. Moreover, they suffer through all these carrying passengers and luggage that are far above their pain threshold.
Organizations have tried to work with drivers in the past, but have been unable to ensure a longstanding change in attitude. I ask that you take action. Complaints against the way donkeys are treated in your town have been ongoing for years, and these will only increase if no change is taken and more people are made aware of it. This could lead to a decrease in visitors and deficits in your tourism industry: more than this, freeing animals from lives of pain and suffering it is the decent thing to do.
I ask that you give Santorini’s donkeys basic needs: access to fresh water at all times; a minimum rest period; regular shade; a maximum weight-bearing limit; and veterinary care and inspections to ensure cruelty does not continue. These are small things to ask, but will mean the world to these overworked and neglected creatures. Do the right thing for Santorini and the people who visit your island will thank you for it – as will the donkeys.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: veesees via Flickr