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An Animal Lover’s Purpose in Life

Like many of us, I grew up eating meat without considering where it came from. It was only recently that I became aware of the suffering that goes on behind animal exploitation. This led me to make the decision to devote my life to helping animals.

I realised that I not only love animals, but I also respect them. I believe that all animals deserve to be treated with kindness regardless of differences in intelligence or abilities, solely because just like us, they have emotions and can feel pain.

Through this blog, I want to inform others of the cruelty behind the meat, dairy, egg, fashion and various other industries that often involve animal cruelty. And thereby, I seek to inspire other animal lovers to lead a more compassionate lifestyle.

Just the thought that simple decisions that one makes on a daily basis can help reduce the suffering that animals go through gives me the strength to continue helping animals.

 

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The Whitewashing in the Dairy Industry

What comes to mind when you think of calcium? Probably dairy. The dairy industry has told us that we need 3 serves of dairy per day to meet our required calcium intake and thus have healthy bones.

However, dairy may not be as healthy as you think. Approximately 75% of the world is lactose intolerant, meaning they experience digestive problems upon consuming dairy. Dairy is also pro-inflammatory and therefore can aggravate or worsen skin conditions including acne and eczema. In addition, most dairy products contain hormones including estrogen and thus consumption can lead to hormone imbalances.

This must be because cow’s milk is not intended to be for human consumption, but is meant to be nourishment to aid the rapid development of baby cows. Cows are usually impregnated every year to keep them producing milk, and they face an early death when their production wanes. Male calves, who are useless products in the eyes of the dairy industry, are separated from their mother in their first day of life and sent to slaughter within their first week of life.

With so many kinder and healthier sources of calcium, this is a cruel and unnecessary practice. Good sources of calcium include dark leafy greens (like kale), bok choy, broccoli, almonds and tofu, just to name a few. Other sources of calcium that can replace dairy products include soy, almond, rice, oat and coconut milks. There is even soy-based and coconut-based cheese and yoghurt!

So please avoid supporting this cruel industry by reducing dairy consumption or removing dairy altogether from your diet if you haven’t already.

Warmth in Winter is Without Wool

With more than one month of winter left in Melbourne, the cold still lingers in the air, making us reach for our wool jumpers, gloves and scarves without a second thought. But wool is not as warm as you may think, at least when it comes to cruelty to sheep.

Naturally, sheep grow just enough wool to insulate themselves against both cold and hot weather. However, genetic alterations and breeding has made sheep in the wool industry produce excessive amounts of wool. Shearing during the winter is common, particularly in southern Australia, where sheep will suffer from the cold and some will even die from the harsh winter weather, as many farms do not provide adequate shelter.

In addition, shearers often handle sheep roughly, cutting and wounding the sheep, in an attempt to shear quickly, as they are paid by the amount of wool rather than by the hour.

Furthermore, lambs are subjected to an even crueler procedure known as ‘mulesing’ to reduce flystrike. This involves the skin surrounding the tail stump being cut off, which often leaves bloody wounds. Barely half the lambs receive even short-term pain relief and barely any will receive veterinary care. In fact, contrary to its very purpose, the open wounds take time to heal and during this time the lamb is at increased risk of flystrike

With so many alternative fabrics that don’t involve this suffering, it should be easy to stay warm without wool.

Alternatives to wool (for knitwear) include:

  • Cotton
  • Polyester
  • Cotton & polyester blend
  • Acrylic
  • Acrylic & polyamide blend
  • Nylon
  • Viscose

So please show warmth to sheep who need their warm coat more than we do.