The neglected animal was finally saved from a life of misery thanks to an online petition
SHOCKING images show the moment an overworked donkey collapses exhausted in a Spanish street after being worked non-stop by its heartless owner.
The cart-pulling ass slumps on its haunches after another long-shift trawling through the streets of the mountainous village of Segorbe, near Valencia.
When police were called in to investigate the shocking situation by worried locals they also found that the owner had a dog in a similar state.
The hound was immediately confiscated and taken to a rescue organisation, but the starving donkey had no such luck.
But then a Good Samaritan contacted the animal charity El Refugio del Burrito (RDB) for help.
“Although both animals are protected under the same law, and it is very clear on how to act when the life of an animal is at risk, we still find that authorities hesitate,” said Veronica Sanchez of the RDB.
“This is a negligence and omission of duty.”
The case had been reported to the local department of animal welfare, but soon got bogged down in bureaucracy.
So the animal lovers at RBD started a campaign on Change.org and in less than 13 hours more than 12,000 people had signed the petition.
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The campaign helped push the local court to take action and on the morning of March 14 rescuers arrived for the donkey.
The owner refused to hand the animal over, even though he was obviously suffering.
A vet would later confirm the donkey needed treatment for severe malnutrition, a hoof infection, multiple skin lesions caused by using inappropriate harnesses, internal and external parasites and other infections.
And this time, the law was on the donkey’s side, and authorities confiscated the animal to save him.
Rescuers named the donkey Vida, which means Life.
The donkey has now had his hooves trimmed and treated and he’s already eating well.
“The donkey is provisionally in a foster home in Castellon, as he is not fit to travel,” said Rosa Chaparro, communications and fundraising manager for RBD.
“As soon as he can travel he will come to our sanctuary in Fuente de Piedra, Malaga.”
At his new home he will meet more than 300 abandoned and formerly mistreated donkeys who found new lives at the sanctuary.