It may come from a sheep, goat, or Tibetan antelope. It may be called “wool,” “mohair,” “pashmina,” or “cashmere.” But no matter what you call it, it means bad news for the animal it came from.
In the wool industry, just weeks after birth, lambs’ ears are punched, their tails are chopped off, and the males are castrated, all without anesthetics. To prevent “flystrike” (a maggot infestation caused by wrinkly skin, which was bred into the sheep so that they would have more wool), Australian ranchers perform a barbarous operation called “mulesing,” which involves carving huge strips of flesh off the backs of unanesthetized lambs’ legs.
Leather is not a slaughterhouse byproduct. It’s a booming industry, a driving force for the cattle industry, and it accounts for two-thirds of the value of the slaughtered cattle. Even the hides of “veal” calves are made into high-priced calfskin. The economic success of slaughterhouses and factory farms is directly linked to the sale of leather goods. Decreasing demand for both animal foods and leather products will result in fewer cows’ being factory-farmed.
Silk is the fiber that silkworms weave to make cocoons. To obtain silk, manufacturers boil worms alive in their cocoons.
Those who wear fur trim and fur coats have the blood of minks, raccoons, foxes, beavers, and other animals on their hands. Animals on fur farms spend their lives in tiny cages only to be killed by anal or genital electrocution, which causes them to have a heart attack. Some are skinned alive. Animals in the wild may languish for days in traps before they die or are killed.
Filed Under: Fashion