When you think of the sunny beaches and white-washed buildings of Santorini, the first thing that trots to mind is probably not an overweight tourist on a mule. However, up until recently, the Greek island’s “famed” donkeys were expected to take rides along the steep and narrow terrain, with ice-cream chomping visitors on their backs.
Activists have been raising concerns over the animals’ well-being for a while, and yesterday the Greek government passed a new law, putting a limit on how much the donkeys can carry.
As USA Today reported, “Tourists wishing to take a ride… must now weigh less than 220 pounds (100 kilograms), or one-fifth of the donkey’s body weight.” In addition, the animals “Should not be loaded with a weight excessive in size, age or physical condition,” said the Greek Ministry of Rural Development and Food.
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As part of the same new set of regulations, injured animals are no longer allowed to work, and adequate food and fresh drinking water will be more closely monitored. Whether this will be maintained or not remains to be seen—as overweight tourists are the only one’s who require a donkey to get around, you’ve got to wonder if this will put the mule service out of business?
— SC SOONER (@pdbaker1) October 11, 2018