Owners of Mablethorpe’s beach donkeys say they have been left ‘shocked’ at claims that the welfare of their animals have been put at risk.
A series of complaints were received by East Lindsey District Council last week, alleging the condition of the donkeys was causing concern.
The council’s principal licensing officer Adrian Twiddy said: “The council is aware of the alleged welfare concerns in respect of the beach donkeys at Mablethorpe and is currently investigating the issues that have been raised.”
Council officials confirmed six complaints had been received.
A petition - signed by more than 2,700 people - was also launched, urging the RSPCA to take action.
An RSPCA spokesman confirmed to the Leader that they had been contacted about the condition of the donkeys.
However, a spokesman said they had inspected the donkeys and could find no evidence to support the claims.
The spokesman said: “We can confirm we have been contacted regarding the welfare of some donkeys kept at Mablethorpe Beach and went along to check on them on Thursday (August 4).
“We would always be very concerned to hear about donkeys with sores, girth injuries and rein injuries gained as a result of giving rides on a beach.
“But, we could find no evidence of this with the donkeys we saw on this beach.
“We have given the owner further advice on the situation.
“We will continue to check on the donkeys’ welfare and urge anyone with any specific concerns to call us on 0300 123 8018.”
The Leader contacted the ownbers of the donkeys.
Aspokesman, who did not want to be named, said they were surprised about the alleged welfare claims and stressed regular inspections took place.
The spokesman said: “We are very surprised and shocked by the recent complaints that have been received and we feel that they are simply not true.
“The donkeys are frequently inspected by experienced and qualifed equine experts.
“The last was only three weeks ago and there will be another one soon.”
The spokesman added: “There was a lengthly RSPCA visit which took place only a few days ago and various animal welfare bodies also make frequent, unannounced checks.
“In all cases, the donkeys were found to be in very good condition.”