A dozen camels have been disqualified from an annual beauty contest due to using Botox.
The camels were taking part in Saudi Arabia’s annual camel beauty contest when their handlers were discovered to have used Botox to make them more handsome.
The show is part of a month-long festival outside Riyadh, the capital of Saudi Arabia.
“The camel,” chief judge Fawzan al-Madi told Reuters, “is a symbol of Saudi Arabia. We used to preserve it out of necessity, now we preserve it as a pastime.”
The prize purse for the races and competitions is 213 million riyals (NZ$7.7 billion) meaning the temptation for some camel showers to cheat can be intense.
However, any form of modification is expressly forbidden according to the entrant’s handbook.
“Camels that are found with drugs in the lips, shaved, dyed in any parts of the body, or with changes from natural form are not allowed,” the chief judge said.
In 2018, attendance to the camel festival has markedly increased, with 300,000 people making the trip to the festival from Riyadh so far.
Once they arrive, festival goers can visit a petting zoo, a museum with life-sized sand sculptures of camels, tents for tasting camel’s milk and a planetarium showing how Arab explorers on camels used the stars as a guide.