Retirement ceremony held for three garbage collector donkeys in Turkey’s Mardin
MARDİN - Doğan News Agency
A ceremony has been held for three garbage pick-up donkeys who have completed their tenure in the southeastern province of Mardin.
Three of the 43 donkeys on duty at Mardin’s Artuklu Municipality have retired after an eight-year work period.
Ribbons were tied to the donkeys’ saddles and cut as part of the traditional ceremony in honor of their retirement. Delicious vegetables and fruits were presented to them as a retirement gift.
The retired donkeys will be sent to an animal shelter where they will be cared for by veterinarians until their death, said an official.
“Forty donkeys are on duty for the clean-up of 23 neighborhoods. We are very fond of the donkeys. These donkeys have worked here since the age of five or six. After working here for eight to 11 years, our donkeys are housed in a separate animal shelter where they will be cared for by veterinarians until they die,” municipal official Kadri Toparlı said.
Donkeys haul garbage collected in Mardin, a province under UNESCO protection, due to a ban on vehicles in the province’s narrow streets.
The garbage collecting donkeys work between 6:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. everyday.
Toparlı also said they made the donkeys listen to classical music, especially Mozart, Bach and Beethoven’s concertos.