The alarming photo of an elephant’s back that carried tourists for 25 years

In Thailand, an animal rights association has published a photo of an elephant whose spine is badly damaged after carrying tourists for 25 years.

Increasingly, tourism operations that involve animals are being singled out, and with good reason. We know the donkeys of Santorini, in Greece, and there are also elephants in Thailand often used as a means of transport for visits and walks.

The NGO WFFT (Wildlife Friends Foundation in Thailand) wanted to warn about the physical consequences suffered by elephants enlisted in the tourism industry.

For this, she posted on Instagram several photographs of Pai Lin, a 71-year-old elephant who spent 25 years of his life carrying tourists on his back, sometimes even six tourists at the same time.

A back completely deformed by years of toil
“Pai Lin’s back bears scars from old pressure points. This can deteriorate the tissues and bones of the back, which causes irreversible physical damage to their spine,” says the NGO, which recovered the pachyderm in 2006, in a severely degraded physical state.

«She was abandoned by her owner who felt she was too slow and could no longer work,» said Edwin Wiek, WFFT’s director on CNN.

If his condition has improved since his arrival at the shelter, his back deformity is a sequel that will never go away. The photos published are unequivocal and we can see how the health of animals is too often ignored when they are used for tourism. We remember, for example, this story, still in Thailand, where an elephant ended up killing its owner who had forced him to carry wood in the heat.

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