Breaking Footage: Donkeys and Mules Still Tormented in Santorini

For Immediate Release:

13 November 2019


Jennifer White +44 (0) 20 7837 6327, ext 222; [email protected]


New PETA Exposé Also Reveals Tourists Have Narrowly Escaped Being Injured by Distressed Animals

London – Today, new footage released by PETA Germany reveals that donkeys and mules are still being beaten and exploited as “taxis” on the Greek island of Santorini. Last year, following a global appeal by PETA Germany and its international affiliates, the Greek Ministry of Rural Development and Food banned any person weighing over 100 kilograms from riding the animals – yet footage from September 2019 shows that they are still forced to carry tourists over the weight limit and are sustaining wounds caused by poorly fitting saddles. Following the investigation, PETA is calling for Greek legislators to introduce a complete ban on all such rides.

Images from the exposé are available here, here, and here.

“It’s a disgrace that gentle donkeys and mules are still being whipped and marched into the ground as they’re forced to work day in and day out with no relief from the hot sun,” says PETA Director Elisa Allen. “PETA is calling on tourists to steer clear of these hideously cruel rides and urging Greek authorities to step up and stop this abuse.”

The footage also reveals that many animals stumble – often after being beaten with a stick by a handler – endangering nearby tourists who are on foot. PETA Germany eyewitnesses frequently had to dodge unsupervised donkeys and mules in order to avoid injury, and one man even had to jump onto a wall to get out of the way of the struggling animals. The video also shows blatant flouting of the new weight restriction, despite veterinary recommendations that donkeys shouldn’t carry more than 20% of their own body weight – approximately 50 kilograms. When not being made to carry extremely heavy loads on their backs, the animals are often tethered in the blazing sun without access to water or shade.

PETA – whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to abuse in any way” – opposes speciesism, which is a human-supremacist worldview.

For more information about PETA and to take action for donkeys and mules, please visit or click here.