Santorini Donkey-Ride Cruelty Prompts Ad Blitz

Campaign Calls On Tourists to Avoid Cruel Donkey and Mule 'Taxi' Rides

For Immediate Release:
September 27, 2019

David Perle 202-483-7382

Santorini, Greece – After Santorini officials refused to run ads highlighting the suffering of donkeys and mules used as “taxis” on the Greek island, PETA Germany—refusing to be silenced—has bombarded neighboring ports, ferries, taxis, buses, billboards, and cargo bikes with the powerful campaign.

Over 100 ads reading, “Help Stop Cruelty: Please Don’t Ride the Donkeys and Mules!” are now visible in the popular Greek coastal towns of Rafina and Piraeus. The campaign follows a recent PETA eyewitness exposé revealing that handlers drag animals down steps and whip and hit them with sticks to make them continue walking.

Images of the ads are available here.

“Tourists beware: Donkeys are whipped into dragging heavy loads up and down the Santorini steps,” says PETA Executive Vice President Tracy Reiman. “PETA is calling on travelers to refuse to participate in these cruel rides—and urging Greek authorities to crack down on this abuse.”

A new law passed this year prevents donkey and mule owners in Santorini from burdening their animals with weights exceeding 100 kilograms (about 220 pounds), even though, according to veterinary recommendations, donkeys shouldn’t carry more than 20% of their bodyweight—approximately 110 pounds When not being made to carry extremely heavy loads on their backs, they’re 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, please visit or click here.

For Media: Contact PETA's
Media Response Team.


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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind