Google has assured users that no animals were harmed in the making of its popular Maps after a Street View picture showed a donkey lying on the side of a road.
Some internet users were up in arms, believing a Google Maps car had run over the donkey on a dirt road while gathering Street View images in Botswana.
Google Maps group product manager Kei Kawai was forced to make a blog post titled "Never ass-ume" in response to concerns about the animal's wellbeing.
He said the donkey had merely been enjoying a roll in the dirt when the car approached the animal in the Kweneng district in the southern African country.As the car approached, the donkey stopped its dust bath and stepped aside
"Because of the way our 360-degree imagery is put together, it looked to some that our car had been involved in an unseemly hit and run, leaving the humble beast stranded in the road," Mr Kawai said.
"I'm pleased to confirm the donkey is alive and well."
His blog post included a set of images showing the donkey standing and moving aside as the Google Maps car neared, and then staring inquisitively at the vehicle as it drove away.The displaced animal stared at the car as it drove past
Social media users were left assured that the beast had not been harmed.
Twitter user Anastasia Bodnar posted: "Turns out the donkey was not run over by Google and walked away happy :)"
And Graham Cluley tweeted: "Google has been accused of many things but killing a donkey with a Street View car?"