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RSPCA Investigate Alleged Sheep Cruelty in Shearing Sheds

11 July 2014

AUSTRALIA - The RSPCA in Australia has launched an investigation into cruelty complaints from People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) regarding the alleged ill treatment of sheep during shearing.

The incidents are alleged to have taken place in New South Wales and South Australia between August 2013 and March 2014.

The allegations relate to workers beating, kicking and stomping on sheep, and stitching wounds without anaesthetic.

The video made publicly available by PETA shows sheep being beaten with shearing hand pieces and thrown down a chute.
Sheep that had been injured during shearing are roughly stitched up.

RSPCA said that shearing is stressful for sheep and it should be carried out by trained and competent workers.

The allegations are serious and will be investigated by RSPCA Inspectors as information comes to hand for potential breaches of the relevant state animal welfare legislation.

PETA President Ingrid E. Newkirk said: “Sheep are gentle prey animals who are petrified of even being held down, yet these sheep were punched in the face, kicked, and stomped on and had their heads slammed into the floor by unsupervised, impatient shearers, causing them great distress, injury, and even death.

“PETA is calling on shoppers around the world to reject cruelty to animals - and that means never buying wool.”

PETA has asked state and local law-enforcement agencies to investigate and file criminal charges against the workers, as appropriate, for what PETA believes are violations of cruelty-to-animals laws.


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