Sheep Thrills
An Animal Rights Article from

July 2014

[Ed. Note: Please read Sheep Need Your Help]

sheep mulesing wool transport
One of many sheep ALV witnessed in pitiful condition jammed inside the mulitple tiered and double length sheep transport truck outside the slaughterhouse.
Image from Animal Liberation Victoria


"The shepherd always tries to persuade the sheep that their interests and his own are the same."
- Stendhal

"After they see me, when their mothers are feeding them all that cashmere sweater and girdle maybe they'll have a second thought and they can be themselves and win."
- Janis Joplin
{"Cheap Thrills" (Sheep Thrills) is the second album from Big Brother and the Holding Company and their last with Janis Joplin as primary lead vocalist.}

"Vegan just means that you don't use animal products, so you don't wear leather, you don't wear wool, and you don't eat animal products..."
- Emily Deschanel

Can you handle a 55 second video to learn where the wool in your sweaters & mittens comes from? Watch:

Feeling a bit sheepish? Then read on...

Some sheep are specially bred by animal agriculture scientists so that the ribs of their offspring grow attached to deliciously well-marbled prime cuts of loins and meat. Other sheep have been selectively bred so that their bodies contain multiple-folds of skin, These adult creatures grow a maximum amount of wool to be harvested from their bodies. Shearing such creatures is not as simple an act as giving a marine recruit a bald-headed haircut.

Because of the multiple folds of skin, these wool-bearing sheep become infested with insects laying eggs causing pain and a lifetime of discomfort.

One such condition commonly occurs to sheep after the fly larva hatch and feed on the living creature's decaying skin. That condition is called "flystrike", and sheep become carriers of living thriving maggots while growing wool for humans to wear as sweaters and to knit into Christmas presents of infant booties and mittens.

In 1830, an awkward Australian sheep herder was shearing a sheep and his clippers slipped and cut off large areas of skin from the upper thighs and anus area of one unlucky creature. The clumsy act was committed by John Mules, and his poor performance became a blessing for the wool-gathering industry. This method of slicing off chunks of skin from the rear regions of wool-producing sheep is referred to as "mulesing", and today it is commonly done to millions of animals each year. Such practice might have appropriately been named after the Frenchman, Marquis de Sade of the 18th century whose name became synonymous for the word "sadism".

It was decided among sensitive sheep-sheerers, after observing the widespread suffering of older animals, that only creatures under the age of 12 months would fairly tolerate such man-given pain. Therefore, compassionate sheering laws were then enacted to eliminate mulesing for any animal over the age of one-year.

Mulesing is a practice kept secret from America's sweater-buying public which incorrectly reasons that clothing from sheered sheep is compassionately gathered. The fact of this matter is far from this truth, as you have witnessed from the above video.

Now, another video. I began to shake and nearly became physically ill after watching less than half of this two minute video. You are warned that it is graphic:

It would not be entirely just of me to leave you with that series of nightmare images. This is the beloved sheep of my youth; the singular, sensational ovine that actually replaced Howdy Doody in prime time kid's television way back when, and you can look that one up:

* * *

"The shepherd always tries to persuade the sheep that their interests and his own are the same."
- Stendhal

"When you are new at sheep-raising and your ewe has a lamb, your impulse is to stay there and help it nurse and see to it and all. After a while, you know that the best thing you can do is walk out of the barn."
- Wendell Berry

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