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Bloggin' FoolJuly 1, 2005

But I just can't stop. I just found this article on how PETA is encouraging an anti-Australian-wool campaign, which made me raise my eyebrows in that "oh, yeah?" way, but then I read it, and it's horrifying, and my very own Christina of Article Pract is listed as one of the few in the nation who are doing the right thing.

That's rad.

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Oy. And that's all I'm going to say about that. (unless you twist my arm, of course.)

Oh my god, that's awful! I noticed, though, while I was reading about this, that last year the big Australian wool producers declared their intent to develop alternatives and end the practice by 2010.

Oh, but then there's this, much more recently.

What PETA doesn't tell you about Mulesing is that it is far, far better than the alternative.

If the flap of skin is not removed, then the sheep will get a fly infestation. The eggs are laid in the sweaty crotch hair and when they hatch, the larvae eat the sheep. Yup, they eat the sheep's living flesh until the sheep die a horrible, painful death. Talk about crotch rot.

The only way to prevent this is to cut off the flap of skin. Australian Wool is workin gtowards a chemical solution.

The operation is also not that bad. I've seen video. They put the lamb in a cage thing and cut the skin off, takes about a second. They bleed a bit down the butt, which makes it look worse than it is.

Here's a good blog on it from an Aussie.
http://www.gravett.org/yobbo/index.php?p=1234

End rant :P

I'm not excusing what sounds like the horrible transport of the sheep to the Middle East, but what PETA neglects to explain when they say that "their throats are slit while they are still conscious" is that according to the Koran this is required for the meat to be halal.

End my rant too. :P

I don't trust a damn word out of PETA's mouths, after they were found to have doctored & edited footage that they illegally obtained in the first place and had a RICO case brought against them for it. (This was in NJ in 2001).

The reason the lambs HAVE this extra skin is because they are bred to have excess folds - more skin, more wool produced. The folds would not be pronounced enough to allow for the laying of eggs if the lambs were not bred for this extra yardage on their rears.

PETA has done a lot of good things, like campaigning for the removal of fur from many common mall stores (Gadzooks, and now Wet Seal) but like any organization, they are not filled with perfect people. Take anything with a grain of salt, but most of the people in it just want to help alleviate suffering. :)

Yes, I agree with RachelT. It's much more complicated that PETA want you to believe. And how are you going to tell Australian merino from other merino? I believe that Koigu, for instance, is Australian merino. And a lot of Italian-spun yarns are made from Australian merino too.

The way to avoid cruelty to animals is to be careful about the origins of animal products. If the yarn company doesn't declare where their wool comes from, maybe it's worth the extra money to support a local breeder? I'm thinking all merino sheep would have these folds, so unless there is a declaration that the breeders don't cut them off, it's probably done - not only in Australia. Of course cruelty-free products will probably be more expensive, but knitting is a luxury hobby after all, not something we do to keep warm.

Like Jen, I don't trust anything PETA says. Their ultimate goal is to wipe out the ability of all people to own pets. And if it means killing them to do that, they will. Recently several PETA employees were arrested for killing pets they "rescued" from shelters.

http://washingtontimes.com/sports/20050621-115255-8184r.htm

I'm so happy to see others speaking out against PETA! I am a livestock owner, and I know that there are things that I have to do to and for my animals that the general public see as "cruel", but if you have ever seen an animal with flystrike you would do anything in your power to prevent it. It is a horrible, painful death. Yes, there are things that are done commercially that are for the convenience of the large scale growers, but most of us small-timers really do care about our animals and do what we can to make their lives meaningful. I hate the fact that PETA enjoys tax-free status and uses their money to attack lawful industries that they disagree with. They use half truths and out right lies to pull in millions from people who don't know the whole story. Most of us in the ag industry don't have the funds available to fight them. I do what I can to educate folks locally, but it isn't nearly enough. Wish our Congresspeoples & Senators had the balls to stand up to them.

I'm so happy to see others speaking out against PETA! I am a livestock owner, and I know that there are things that I have to do to and for my animals that the general public see as "cruel", but if you have ever seen an animal with flystrike you would do anything in your power to prevent it. It is a horrible, painful death. Yes, there are things that are done commercially that are for the convenience of the large scale growers, but most of us small-timers really do care about our animals and do what we can to make their lives meaningful. I hate the fact that PETA enjoys tax-free status and uses their money to attack lawful industries that they disagree with. They use half truths and out right lies to pull in millions from people who don't know the whole story. Most of us in the ag industry don't have the funds available to fight them. I do what I can to educate folks locally, but it isn't nearly enough. Wish our Congresspeoples & Senators had the balls to stand up to them.

You are brave for bringing up such a controversial issue. THANK YOU. I don't want any animal to suffer because of me, ever. I'm sure there are more humane ways of dealing with that fly infestation (thanks for the link, Lara). And Halal or not Halal... well maybe I better not touch that one!

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