Over 40 Camels Disqualified From Beauty Contest in Saudi Arabia For Receiving Botox Injections

Botox was deemed an illegal advantage in camel beauty contests following a Botox injection incident involving a dozen contest camels in 2018

camel botox

It wasn't a happy Hump Day for some camel breeders in Saudi Arabia.

The Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported Wednesday that more than 40 camels were disqualified from a beauty contest at the King Abdulaziz Camel Festival for receiving Botox injections and other artificial physical enhancements ahead of the event, according to The Associated Press.

Saudi authorities told the state-run news agency that the bust was the biggest of its kind.

"The club is keen to halt all acts of tampering and deception in the beautification of camels," said the SPA report, which noted that organizers would "impose strict penalties on manipulators," per The AP.

Botox injections, which were applied to camels' heads and lips, were just one of several violations discovered by judges at this year's festival, The AP reports.

Some breeders used fillers for facial relaxation and hormones to exaggerate muscles on their camels. Other violations included stretching out the lips and noses of some camels and embellishing certain body parts with rubber bands.

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Each year, camel breeders are invited to compete at the festival for $66 million in prize money, the report states. Jurors determine a winner by judging camel contestants on the shape of their head, neck, and hump, as well as their dress and posture.

The SPA reported that judges at the festival, which began this month in the desert northeast of the Saudi capital, Riyadh, are cracking down on the artificial enhancements by utilizing "specialized and advanced" technology.

Botox was deemed an illegal advantage after an incident in 2018, where contest officials discovered a dozen camels had received Botox injections to enhance their appearance.

"The camel is a symbol of Saudi Arabia," the show's chief judge, Fawzan al-Madi, said to Reuters at the time. "We used to preserve it out of necessity, now we preserve it as a pastime."

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