Five-time Formula One World Champion and vegan Lewis Hamilton has spoken out against animal cruelty, saying it “pains his heart.”
The athlete, widely considered one of the greatest drivers in the history of the sport, posted on his Instagram Stories to his 10.9 million followers, sharing an image of a donkey pulling a cart.
“I just wish I could be there to give this beautiful animal a hug, take him away from this pain and bring light into their life,” Hamilton captioned the image.
“It is such a cruel world, how can somebody do these things to other beings. Gives me so much pain in my heart,” the 34-year-old athlete said.
Lewis Hamilton and Animal Welfare
Hamilton adopted a plant-based diet in 2017 after watching the documentary “What The Health,” which looks at the link between diet and disease. Following the change, the athlete said he could never go back to eating meat, saying he felt “the best I’ve ever felt in my life.”
While health reasons play a role in his decision to eschew animal products (Hamilton’s plant-based diet recently helped him gain 15lbs of muscle), the athlete hasn’t ignored the ethical issues linked to the vegan cause.
In February, Hamilton took to Instagram to share a repost from non-profit marine conservation group, the Oceanic Preservation Society. The post came about after the Icelandic government announced it would allow whale hunting for at least another five years, enabling the legal slaughter of up to 2,130 baleen whales. The post raised awareness about the issue, highlighting the vital role whales play in keeping oceans healthy and urged the public to speak out against the practice.
In April, he wrote online about Canada’s annual commercial seal slaughter which sees baby seal pups (97 percent of which are under three months old) being killed with wooden clubs, hakapiks, and guns. “I saw this and wanted to share with you,” he wrote to his fans on Instagram along with an image of a man participating in the hunt. “It’s disgusting that governments allow this to happen. This man attacking this seal has no heart. I love Canada but you guys need to stop this from happening! You are better than this.”