Wool, Down & Silk
None of these products are required by humans.
The commercial production of all these items involve extremely cruel practices that cause suffering and death for the animals being used.
If we purchase these unnecessary items, we finance unnecessary animal cruelty.
All these products have high quality alternatives that are widely available, affordable and cruelty free.
Wild sheep, like other animals, grow their fleece thick in winter and shed it in summer. Modern wool producing sheep have been selectively bred to grow excess wool and not shed their fleece. On the farm, they can under go extremely painful procedures that include removal of testicles, tail docking and mulesing, which is the cutting away of skin and tissue from around their bottom, all without anaesthetic. Shearing is often painful and can cause cuts and bleeding, and some shearers can be abusive. All these sheep will ultimately be slaughtered.
This 14 minute video by Erin Janus explains the wool industry further. WARNING: EXTREMELY GRAPHIC CONTENT. Viewer discretion advised.
Down and feathers are not by-products of the meat industry, they are valuable co-products. They make the raising and killing of ducks and geese more profitable. However, not all birds are killed before plucking. Only one harvest can be made from a dead bird. But if kept alive, their down and feathers will grow back in 2-3 months, and they can be live plucked several times in a year. Live plucking is extremely painful and can cause bleeding as their skin is ripped open from aggressive plucking, without anaesthetic. All these birds will ultimately be slaughtered.
This 4 minute video by PETA shows live plucking houses in the down and feather industry. WARNING: GRAPHIC CONTENT.
When silkworms begin their transformation into a moth, they produce a continuous unbroken silk fibre from their mouth and use it to build a cocoon around themselves. After 3 weeks, they would naturally break the cocoon and emerge as a moth. But to keep the silk fibre unbroken and more workable for the farmer, the cocoons are put into boiling water, which boils the silkworms alive inside, before the cocoons are unravelled to produce silk thread. One silk shirt requires the fibre produced by approximately 1000 silkworms.
This 20 second video shows silk cocoons being boiled. WARNING: Whilst not graphic, some viewers may find this content upsetting.