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SAT 17 OCT: National rally to end live exports!

SAT 17 OCT: National rally to end live exports!

Posted 12 October 2015   by Amy         Permalink | 1 Comment

Tags: live export, sheep, rally

Have you had enough of animals suffering at the hands of law-breaking live exporters? It's time to make your voice heard for animals.

This Saturday 17th October, caring Aussies across the country will demand justice for the Australian sheep who cruelly had their throats sawn open while fully conscious during this year's Festival of Sacrifice.

What our investigators uncovered during the festival was nothing short of criminal. Watch the latest proof that certain live exporters are acting like they're above the law ...


WARNING: This video contains distressing cruelty. Please choose not to watch if you feel you might find it too upsetting. You can find rally details below.

Our investigators found thousands upon thousands of Aussie sheep being illegally sold for sacrificial slaughter. In backyards and makeshift abattoirs they were killed by untrained slaughtermen. Often sheep stood by and watched others of their kind being brutally butchered.

And the Government continues to give offending exporters the okay to export more animals!

We're determined to make sure that live exporters who break the rules are charged for their crimes -- and to see an end to this cruel trade. Join us in demanding justice for Australian sheep on Saturday 17th October. Click on your city to RSVP to the Facebook event.

Find a rally near you:

  • Sydney
    Top of Martin Place, 12 pm
  • Canberra
    Federation Mall, Parliament House, 12 pm
  • Brisbane
    Parliament House, 1 pm
  • Fremantle
    Peter Hughes Drive (in front of E shed markets), 12 pm
  • Adelaide
    Parliament House, 12 pm
  • Melbourne
    Parliament House, 1 pm
  • Hobart
    Parliament Lawns, Salamanca House, 3 pm

The only thing left to do is sign up for an SMS reminder and download your live export rally placard to take along on the day.

I hope to see you there :)

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WATCH: Cute lamb plays hide and seek (not very well)

WATCH: Cute lamb plays hide and seek (not very well)

Posted 19 January 2015   by Amy         Permalink | 6 Comments

Tags: sheep, lamb, lambs, video, funny, cute

This little lamb looks like she loves a game of hide and seek (even though she needs lots of clues from 'Bea' :P)

Haha! She finally found Bea. Never give up little lamby :)

Did you know that sheep are known for their playfulness? They can also learn and respond to their name, just like dogs. Click here to find out everything you never knew about sheep.

Have you seen another cute lamb video? Share it with me in the comments :)

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11 Aussies who won't be eating lamb this Aus Day

11 Aussies who won't be eating lamb this Aus Day

Posted 15 January 2015   by Amy         Permalink | 2 Comments

Tags: Australia Day, vegetarian, pledge, lamb, sheep, Australia

What do Peter Siddle and Portia de Rossi have in common?

  1. They're Australian.
  2. They won't be eating lamb on Australia Day.

And they're not the only ones. Check out these 11 Aussies who reckon eating meat has no place on Aus Day. (Or any other day).

1. Peter Siddle

SIDDLE.jpg

"[M]y girlfriend told me about factory farming, and how brutal it was to animals ... so that's when I decided to become vegetarian" says Aussie cricketer Peter Siddle. There'll be no lamb (or any other animal) on his plate this Australia Day.

2. Abbie Cornish

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Actress Abbie Cornish first heard the word 'vegetarian' when she was 13. And on the same day she decided she wanted to be one :)

3. Osher Gunsberg

osher.jpg

'Bachie' host and his famous hair have been vegan for over a decade. Got a date with some Moroccan veggie skewers on Jan 26 Osh?

4. Chris Lilley

chris-lilley.jpg

Imagine a 5 year old Chris Lilley. Then imagine 5 year old Chris Lilley telling his mum that he wouldn't eat animals ever again.

That happened.

5. Sia

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Aussie singer/songwriter Sia announced that she was now vegan in a tweet last year. YUS! Sia at my place for some cocunut/mango icy poles this Aus Day?

6. Ash Grunwald

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Blues musician and long-time vego Ash Grunwald will no doubt be nomming on some meat-free goodness on January 26th. Maybe some sesame tofu sticks ... or some BBQ seitan ribs ... mmmmm

7. Dave 'Rasta' Rastovich

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Surfer dude Rasta was once saved by a dolphin! He now does all he can to return the favour by campaigning to protect marine life. He also does his bit for all animals by not eating them :)

8. Portia de Rossi

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Portia hasn't eaten animals in over 6 years. "I feel happier, like I'm contributing to making the world a less violent place." She and Ellen are both vegan. (Because couples who eat legumes together, stay together.*)

*Based on no evidence.

9. Harley Bonner & 10. Ariel Kaplan

neighbours.jpg

Everybody needs good neighbours. And neighbours who leave animals off their plates are the best kind IMHO :) These two, who play Josh and Imogen on Neighbours, are more likely to be cuddling a lamb than eating one on Australia Day.

11. Me

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Australia Day (like every day) will be meat-free at my place. Maybe my housemates and I will have burritos again. They were yum.

---

I know what you're thinking ... 'I want to be cool like these people this Australia Day.'

Good news. It's easy as. Just don't eat baby animals (or any animals) on January 26th. Or if you want to be super cool everyday, make the pledge to go veg for life.

Click here to make the pledge ... and then come back here to watch Winter the lamb do a happy dance. Because you deserve it.

Happy Australia Day!

P.S. Here's some awesome cruelty-free Aus Day recipes.

P.P.S. I know you want to put this on your facebook/insta/whatever:

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P.P.P.S. THIS. Ok I'm really going now bye.

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Here's what you need to know about live export right now

Here's what you need to know about live export right now

Posted 8 October 2014   by Amy         Permalink | 2 Comments

Tags: live export, sheep, Eid

As I write this, our brave live export investigators are returning from the field after documenting one of the darkest times of the year for animals -- the Festival of Sacrifice, or Eid. Tragically, millions of animals are sacrificed during these celebrations across the Middle East and Asia. Hundreds of thousands of animals exported from Australia are among them.

What is the Eid?

The Festival of Sacrifice is a religious holiday honouring the willingness of Ibrahim to sacrifice his son Ishmael as an act of devotion to Allah. Seeing Ibrahim's commitment, Allah gave him a lamb to sacrifice in place of his son. So during the Eid, many Muslims today sacrifice an animal and share the meat amongst family, friends and the poor.

But just like many people here don't support the way animals are treated in our own country, many locals in the Middle East are opposed to the cruelty that goes on during the Eid. In fact, some of our investigators are local Muslims who share our goal of a kinder world for animals. And some Islamic leaders have also spoken out, saying that the way animals are being treated does not fit with Islamic teachings.

Why does cruelty occur?

Just as Christmas is a peak time for animal suffering in Australia -- with millions of pigs, turkeys and chickens killed for the Christmas table -- the Festival of Sacrifice is the worst time for animals in the Middle East.

Sadly, whenever animals are slaughtered on masse, cruelty and suffering is bound to occur. For Australian animals who are exported for the Eid this is made even worse -- since most of these stressed out animals aren't used to regular human contact, and the people killing them often have little experience slaughtering animals, and even less experience handling Australian animals. What's it like?

Animals Australia investigators have documented sheep being tied up, shoved into car boots and loaded on to the back of utes. Stressed bulls are tripped with ropes and then have their legs tied together, so that they are helpless to protect themselves. Most of these unfortunate animals then suffer a terrifying death -- their throats cut while fully conscious by men with little or no slaughter experience or by overworked abattoir workers.

The city streets literally run red with the blood of slaughtered animals as they're killed outside houses and on the street itself.

Understandably this is not just a hard time for animals ... it can be extremely confronting for a lot of people too. Alaa Sharshar, the owner of Vegan Kitchen -- Egypt's first vegan restaurant -- told The Guardian that ever since he was a boy he has had to get out of Cairo on the day of the sacrifice.

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Alaa Sharshar -- Vegan Kitchen. Photo: Patrick Kingsley for the Guardian

And I can imagine that I would definitely have to do the same after watching this short video of the streets of the Gaza Strip on the first day of Eid. This video gives you a small glimpse of what it would be like to be out on the street during this Festival. But please BE WARNED that you might find it distressing to watch. There's no actual slaughter filmed but there are body parts of animals shown and lots of blood :(

What does it have to do with us?

Australia is the largest live exporter in the world and every year during the Eid hundreds of thousands of Australian animals -- mostly sheep and cattle -- are exported to the Middle East and Asia for sacrifice. Live exporters have seen the shocking cruelty that awaits animals at the other end, but they load them onto ships and send them anyway.

[Ask your MP today to put a stop to this cruel trade.]

What are we doing about it?

While live exports continue Animals Australia will be there documenting and exposing cruelty that occurs, and campaigning for a ban. In the last 2 years, we've made 31 reports of illegal activity in the live export trade and campaigned alongside countless caring people like you to bring an end to live exports for good.

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What can I do?

This trade needs to end. We've seen time and time again that politicians can't promise that rules won't be broken and that animals won't be mistreated. You can help by writing to your MP about the cruelty of the live export trade and asking them to support a ban. Click here to send your political representative a message today.

However, there is another problem here and that is that whenever there is a mass demand for animals to be killed for 'food' -- cruelty occurs. While it may not be happening right in front of us in the streets, animals here in Australia are often roughly handled as they are led to slaughter and if you've ever watched footage from inside an abattoir you'll know the terror animals can experience as they're taken to be killed.

A recent investigation by Aussie Farms into a NSW pig slaughterhouse shows that pigs scream and thrash about in terror as they are lowered into gas chambers -- a process which is described as the most 'humane' slaughter method. Click here to judge for yourself.

The demand for meat in Australia is so high that over a million animals are killed every single day. Every single day! And, like the Eid, many of the holidays we celebrate here centre around a feast and animals can suffer as a result. For example, the number of turkeys killed for meat goes up dramatically in the lead up to Christmas :(

But it doesn't have to be this way. More and more people are making sure no animals are harmed for their food, and reducing the demand for meat, by simply taking animals off their plate. You can make that choice starting today.

pig-pledge-2.jpg

There's heaps of meat-free recipes for you to try out right here. And if you need any tips for a cruelty-free Christmas, I can solidly recommend the festive roast from Suzy Spoons Vegetarian Butcher. Check out the Chrissy feast I had last year:

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Zomg it was so good. Feel free to tell me how totes jel you are below :)

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Wool? What's wrong with wool?

Wool? What's wrong with wool?

Posted 18 July 2014   by Amy         Permalink | Be the first to comment

Tags: sheep, wool, investigation, video

I stopped wearing wool a long time ago. I didn't really think about it much. I just figured I don't need it. I found some good warm socks made of bamboo and carried on with my life.

But people often ask "Wool? What's wrong with wool?" Well, a lot. Turns out sheep, just like animals in factory farms, routinely have bits of their bodies cut off without any pain relief whatsoever.

What's more, this investigation footage from PETA taken in 19 Australian shearing sheds, (aired on SBS), revealed more about the suffering of sheep in the wool industry than I ever needed to know :(

WARNING: This footage is bad. If graphic vision upsets you, skip the vid and take action now.

Sheep don't deserve this -- kicked, stomped on, punched, hit with shears, thrown ... one animal was even shown being beaten over the head with a hammer!

This horrific abuse has sparked an investigation by authorities and even the wool industry itself is calling for tough action. But here's the thing, even if the wool industry could stamp out those shearers who are hitting and throwing animals, there's at least 3 reasons I'm happy to leave wool out of my wardrobe:

First up shearing is stressful. Sheep can get stressed out just from being separated from the flock, let alone being pinned down and taken to with shears.

Secondly, even if a shearer is slow and careful, sheep can get cut. And with shearers getting paid per sheep, they're not going slow -- in fact, they're in a rush to shear as many sheep as quickly as possible.

And here's the clincher: If sheep are badly cut during shearing, they can have their gaping wounds sewn up using needle and thread, without any pain relief. *Shudder*. I can't even begin to imagine how painful that must be. And the wool industry accepts this practice :( Along with other painful procedures like mulesing and tail docking. (Again, with no pain killers!)

If you're thinking that this is an industry you'd rather not support, then I have some very good news for you. You can make the choice today to not buy into cruelty and give wool the flick. There are so many other things to make jumpers and scarves out of that don't involve any cruelty to animals at all that it's easy as to make the switch :) Make the pledge today.

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P.S. If the truth about wool came as a shock to you, you might be surprised to learn the secret behind leather too. Click here to expose what you were never told about leather.

Header image thanks to Freedom Hill Sanctuary

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Live export #fail

Live export #fail

Posted 14 October 2013   by Amy         Permalink | 5 Comments

Tags: live export, sheep, action, Kuwait, Jordan

I’ve gotta share a sad story with you I’m afraid…

Tomorrow, this Australian sheep is destined to be brutally slaughtered in Kuwait, on the first day of the annual Festival of Sacrifice. Sadly, he's just one of thousands of sheep who will suffer tomorrow. They will be sold on the streets, stuffed into car boots, and butchered in back streets and makeshift abattoirs. It will all happen with the acceptance of live exporters. And it will all be illegal.

These sheep are supposed to be protected from what is about to happen. And yet our investigators have found thousands of Australian sheep being sold illegally at roadside markets, in Jordan and Kuwait, where they were never allowed to be. AND their ear tags had been removed, in what appears to be an attempt to hide the identity of the exporter.

Now for some good news: This investigation has exposed that live exporters clearly don’t intend to play by the rules. But they’re shooting themselves in the foot. Every time we expose that they’re breaking the rules, it comes back to bite them. 

They say “anything worth having is worth fighting for.” (Susan Elizabeth Phillips.) And while we haven’t ended live export yet, with every investigation, and every action you take we make it harder for them to export animals, more expensive and, as a result, the numbers of animals being exported decreases (#win).

Today, you can be the voice for these animals! Help remind our politicians that the only way to protect sheep from this brutality is to stop the live export trade once and for all. Take action NOW!

  • If you’re over 18, head here to let your MP know that you support an end to live export.
  • If you’re under 18, click here to tell the PM where you stand.
  • Help us continue to hold exporters to account for cruelty by clicking here to sponsor an Animals Australia investigator.

Every time you speak up for these animals, you bring us a step closer to ending the live export trade. So thank you for speaking out today!

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This is how ewe headbutt

This is how ewe headbutt

Posted 16 September 2013   by Amy         Permalink | 6 Comments

Tags: sheep, bulls, wool, mulesling, video, cute

Here’s three things you might not know...

1. Sheep make excellent teachers:

2. The wool industry can be a pain in the arse for sheep:

3. Helping sheep is easy as. Give wool the flick.

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P.S. Have you ever seen anything cuter than that sheep walking backwards?

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Thousands rally against live exports!

Thousands rally against live exports!

Posted 8 October 2012   by Anthony         Permalink | 6 Comments

Tags: live export, cows, sheep, rally, action

Check these pics and clip out! People power in action...

On the weekend, countless numbers of people, young and old, took to the streets to call for an end to live exports. Simultaneous rallies were planned for capital cities across the country, speakers were confirmed, banners were made, and friends were invited. On the big day, a tidal wave of compassionate Aussies swept into the streets calling for an end to live exports.

See more rally photos from around the country!

You might already know that live export shipments from Australia have ended in a series of tragedies for animals over the last few weeks. Mother cows and calves have died from heat exhaustion and neglect in Qatar, and thousands of sheep have been stabbed, clubbed and buried alive in Pakistan.

The worst part is that these last few weeks haven't been some bizarre out-of-the-ordinary experience in the live export industry. Since the trade began, there has been no way that anyone can protect Australian animals once they leave our shores. This has seen them become victims of horrific treatment at their final destination.

Investigation after investigation by Animals Australia has shown the terrible fate that awaits Australian sheep and cows who have been exported. And with each investigation, opposition to the cruel trade grows among the Australian public. More and more people are calling for a ban on live exports, including members of the current government!

From east to west a collective voice was heard very clearly - Australians want an end to live exports. It really was an awesome day with a great atmosphere. How could it not have been though, when you get thousands of animal lovers together in one place :D

If you went along to a rally - thank you! Now we need you to keep the rally going. If you're 18 or over, let your local politician know that you're over live exports. If you not quite 18 yet, then you can still get a message to the PM telling her what you think about this cruel trade. Together, we have to speak up for the animals - because they can't do it themselves.

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Ban Live Exports National Rally!

Ban Live Exports National Rally!

Posted 2 October 2012   by Anthony         Permalink | 5 Comments

Tags: live export, cows, sheep, rally, action

Important dates during the year: your birthday ... and this Saturday!! This Saturday is the Ban Live Exports National Rally - when people all across Australia will join together to show their opposition to the cruelty that is live exports. It's time to get your rally on!

Find out what's happening and how you can help in your capital city!


Ban Live Export National Rally

When?

Saturday October 6

Where?

Melbourne, Sydney, Adelaide, Perth, Brisbane, Canberra, Hobart.

Details:

for times & locations in your city and more info visit animalsaustralia.org/live-export-rally


The horror stories coming out of Pakistan even as you read this blog are just the latest in a long history of animal cruelty cases which can be pinned on the live exports industry. In case you don't know what's been happening in Pakistan lately - here's the basics.


After weeks stuck on a ship in sweltering heat ... and then being confined in mud-filled pits with hardly any access to water and food and barely enough room to lie down ... Australian sheep have been killed en masse in the most brutal way. Workers have been stabbing and clubbing the harmless sheep and even burying them alive in the same pits dug for the dead sheep.

Of the original 21,000 sheep who left Australia there are now just 10,000 survivors. They have endured heat, hunger and brutality while watching thousands upon thousands of their woolly friends die.

This type of pain and fear can never be justified. The steady stream of horror stories as a result of live exports proves that it can never be fixed. That the trade continues sends a message to the rest of the world that Australians accept animal cruelty. If that's not what you're about this is your day to stand up to live export!

This Saturday thousands of people around Australia will be speaking up for the victims of live exports - because the victims can't speak up for themselves.

Tell your friends, tell your family ... tell your friends' families! This Saturday is going to be huge. Grab this opportunity to speak up for the animals, and demand an end to live exports. A kinder world is possible if you want it to be.

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Live exports - Australia's shame.

Live exports - Australia's shame.

Posted 21 September 2012   by Anthony         Permalink | 7 Comments

Tags: live export, cows, sheep

You may have heard a lot in the news recently about the live export of Australian sheep and cattle to overseas countries. The amount of animals involved and the amount of suffering they have to go through makes live exports one of the most serious cases of animal abuse in Australia. If you love animals, it's definitely an issue you'll want to know all about.

Live exports is in crisis at the moment, with tragedy after tragedy unfolding. It might be a bit confusing keeping a track of what is happening where, but hopefully this map will help make it clear for you. (Sorry North and South America - there just wasn't enough room for you! NZ, you missed out, too.)

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BAHRAIN: 21,000 sheep were stranded aboard a ship in the middle of the Arabian Gulf, in soaring temperatures for 2 weeks(!!) after Bahrain refused to accept them. Every extra day stuck on a ship results in more animal suffering and more deaths.

The sheep on this ship were eventually offloaded in PAKISTAN. There they are being held in overcrowded mud-filled pens and their ability to lie down or reach food and water is severely restricted. Authorities there are supporting a plan for a mass kill and for their bodies to be thrown into large pits.

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KUWAIT: A similar situation to Bahrain unfolded in Kuwait, with Australian sheep left in limbo out at sea for a week, suffering through high temperatures and confined spaces. Eventually these animals were unloaded. But sadly, that wouldn't have been the end to their suffering. They then would have been killed fully conscious.

dairy-suffering-in-qatar-4.jpgQATAR: Of 250 dairy cows sent to one property, over 60 of them died in one week from thirst, hunger and heat stress. One vet technician said that these gentle animals "were frying from the inside out". Of 10,000 sheep sent to the same property ... only 3000 are left. To make this tragedy even worse - the property owner is planning to import another shipment of dairy cows later this year. Lend your voice to help stop this plan immediately.

EGYPT: 2 shiploads of cattle face an uncertain future as the Egyptian govt is refusing to allow them to be slaughtered. These cows have been stuck in sweltering heat and cramped feedlots for weeks now.

INDONESIA: 11,000 cattle are stranded in Indonesian feedlots after the govt there "rejected" them. These cows cannot come back to Australia because of our quarantine laws, so they are stuck in limbo, some of them since May! This is despite the fact that 94% of them are pregnant or have given birth since arriving.

The cruelty of live exports cannot be denied. The misery for animals begins from the moment they step onto boats at the port. They have no idea what will happen to them - BUT YOU DO! You can help protect sheep and cows in Australia by demanding an end to live exports. Join Animals Australia's campaign to shut down this terrible trade. Take action now!

UPDATE 27th SEPTEMBER:

"Like a giant mass of wool, bloodied and filthy, they lay in trenches, slit open, stabbed or clubbed to death, while many still wriggled with some life left in them, soon to be buried alive."

This is the scene emerging from Pakistan, where stranded Australian sheep now face an unimaginably horrible death.

Footage from Pakistan shows confused and scared sheep being stabbed and clubbed and their bodies being dumped into trenches. Some of them are still visibly alive when they are pushed into the pit.

This is what the boss at an exporting company said of the scene."I have watched the video and let me tell you that ever since I have seen those gruesome visuals, I haven't eaten or slept." And that's coming from the guy who sent the sheep there in the first place!

There is a tragedy of immense size unfolding in Pakistan and it can be traced directly to the cruel industry of live exports. Help end this cruel trade forever!

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Levy the Lamb's amazing survival - UPDATE!

Levy the Lamb's amazing survival - UPDATE!

Posted 19 September 2012   by Anthony         Permalink | 15 Comments

Tags: live exports, sheep, good news, interview, Levy

Levy the lamb had the odds stacked against him from the day he was born. Standing terrified by the side of a busy road, and refusing to leave his dead mother - things did not look good for Levy. His remarkable story of survival and his life now will amaze you. Read on for Unleashed's exclusive interview with Levy the Lamb!

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Hi Levy. Thanks for making time for the interview.
Well I am missing morning tea for this but I'm a fan of Unleashed, so that's ok.

What else have you got planned for today?
Later today I might go for a walk with the dogs, have a snack then maybe a snooze before I help mum with the farm chores.



And what would be the perfect day for you?
Well that's a pretty good day but for it to be perfect add more snacks, some electrical cords to chew and perhaps an arvo inside the house ... preferably the kitchen, that's where the humans hide the good stuff.

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You had a very tough start to your life. Can you tell us what your first memories are?
Wow! It's hard to go back there... Well, I remember I was on the side of a road with crows pecking at me. I wanted sheep-mum to wake up and tell them to go away but she was asleep. I was cold, lonely and hungry. I remember a nice man picking me up and looking after me. He mustn't have been able to wake sheep-mum up either so we had to leave without her. (INTERVIEWERS NOTE: Levy was born on the side of a busy road after his mum had fallen out of a sheep truck. She gave birth to Levy as she passed away, and so couldn't protect him from the crows.)

Do you know what would have happened to all those other sheep on the truck with you?
There is a lot of talk amongst my kind as to where those trucks go. Human-mum doesn't like them though so I'm guessing my mates didn't end up in a paddock full of delicious grass. I've heard horror stories about some humans killing and eating animals like me... I'll need therapy if I talk about that too much.

Levy2.jpgHow did you come to be living with your current family?
The nice man who picked me up from the side of the road took me to a nice lady who looked after me for a couple weeks but she didn't have any grass for me to eat. So she took me to another nice lady (human-mum) who has a lot of grass. At first she fed me milk and let me sleep in the bed with her but now I am all grown up and I really like all the grass.

Levy6.jpgDo you have many friends to spend the day with?
Oh yeah I have loads of friends. The three dogs are my BFF's, the horses are alright, the pig is cool as long as you are on her good side (don't mention her waist line and you should be right). The cats are a bit strange, there are chickens and other sheep like me but I'm a real people person, I like my humans the most.

I know for a fact that you're determined to help your fellow sheep. Tell us what you've been up to and who you've met?
Human-mum raised me right, it's important to help those less fortunate, you know! I've had photo shoots; I'm on the Stop Live Export website and signs; and I've been on the news and in newspapers. I enjoy helping at stalls and protests and I have been lucky enough to meet a lot of nice people who are doing some super awesome things to help animals. I've even met politicians like Lisa Baker, Lynn MacLaren and Melissa Parke.

Can you give any advice to young people who want to help animals but don't know where to start?
Don't be sheepish! The most effective way to help us 'farmed animals' is to stop eating us!! There are so many yummy cruelty free options out there that are easy to make (trust me ... I've seen human-mum trying to cook - if she can do it, so can you!) Start by finding out what we go through to end up on your plate. Another good place to start is volunteering for organisations that help animals, like I do.

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What's one interesting fact that people may not know about sheep like you?
Just one?! Hmm, ok ... I can remember 50 different faces for about two years. So that means if you get on my bad side I have two years to come after you! Mwah-ha-haaaa!

Can you give us three words to describe yourself?
Handsome, loving and cheeky.

Is there a final message you want to pass on to all the young people reading today?
Young 'uns! You are our hope for a better future. Every cruelty-free choice you make, every person you inform and every time you help an organisation in any way, it gets us closer to ending the abuse of my mates. Don't let people pull the wool over your eyes ... we don't want to go on trucks and ships, we don't want our babies stolen from us, we don't want to spend our lives in tiny cages, we want to be happy and live!

Oh, and add me on Facebook!

Thanks for telling us your story today, Levy! (And thanks to your human-mum Rachael for her help in translating, too).

Levy8.jpgLevy escaped the fate facing countless numbers of animals around Australia, who are either killed in Australia for meat, or live exported to other countries. Once they leave Australian shores they face voyages across oceans, and many die at sea. In the countries they are exported to, they are slaughtered in ways that most Australians would object to.

You can make a difference to sheep like Levy. Take the pledge to go veg, and get all the facts about Australia's baa-baa-barbaric live export trade.

BREAKING NEWS!!

Levy now has a girlfriend!! This is just very recent news, so details are sketchy at the moment. I can tell you though that Levy is very much in love, and wants to do nothing but spend all day with his new lady-lamby friend.

Unconfirmed reports state that Levy and his girlfriend have been "sitting in a tree, K-I-S-S-I-N-G." But seeing as how they are sheep, and sheep are not known for their awesome tree-climbing skills ... I find these reports to be highly doubtful.

There has been only one photo so far of the lovely couple. Judging by how close they're standing though, I would say that Levy is probably at second base. You go, Levy!!

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Live export sheep swims to freedom!

Live export sheep swims to freedom!

Posted 5 July 2012   by Karen         Permalink | 5 Comments

Tags: live exports, sheep, sheep, good news, FREEDOM!

In the calm waters of Eilat Bay in Israel, an unusual white figure was seen bobbing in the cold water. Was it a boat? A pelican? No. It was an Australian sheep, swimming for his life.

Sahar, as he became known, had jumped or fallen from the nearby pier where a live export ship was unloading. He was beyond exhausted, and struggling to stay afloat. His fleece was waterlogged, and his thin legs, ever intended for swimming, were paddling fast but failing to keep his head above water.

Were it not for the decisive actions of a 14 year old boy who jumped into the water and raised the alarm, Sahar's life may have ended then and there. But instead, a remarkable rescue operation ensued. The pictures say it all...

The image of a 50 kilogram sheep swimming off the coast of Israel might seem like an odd sight. But in reality, thousands of Australian sheep pass these waters every year. Sahar was just one of tens of thousands of stressed and confused sheep packed onto a live export ship in Australia, bound for slaughter in the Middle East.

Not all of Sahar's companions even survived the boat trip. Some died of starvation onboard as they couldn't get used to eating the unfamiliar pellet feed given on the ship. The sheep that did make it to Israel faced an even more horrible fate: a knife cut to the throat while fully conscious, before bleeding to death on the floor of an Israeli slaughterhouse.

This brutal death is not a one-off or some accident. This practice is accepted by Australia's live export industry without question. Yet it was clear to the people who helped Sahar that he deserved better. "Our thought was that the sheep deserved freedom, that it would be unfair to lead him to slaughter." said one of Sahar's rescuers.

The rescue team was forced to fight for Sahar's life a second time when the sheep importer learned of the rescue and demanded that Sahar be slaughtered along with his shipmates. Fortunately Sahar's rescuers were able to persuade the importer to surrender the sheep into their care.

After veterinary checks and a lot of TLC, Sahar regained his strength and was given sanctuary at a nearby Kibbutz (like a community-run farm). His gentle nature and amazing story made him a favourite with local kids who affectionately describe him as a "celebrity"!

israel-sheep-rescue-08.jpg

Sahar's extraordinary story is one in a million. Yet he was no more deserving of compassion than the thousands of individual animals who began his journey with him. While we cannot save animals who have already met a cruel fate, we can save others from similar suffering.

With just a minute of your time, you can help rescue other animals from the pain and suffering of live export - click here to help end live exports.

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Lives risked and life saved in rescue!

Lives risked and life saved in rescue!

Posted 17 June 2012   by Anthony         Permalink | 9 Comments

Tags: sheep, lamb, rescue, heroes, Little Bo Peep is gonna be so relieved

Proving that real men are kind to animals, Norwegian mates Erik and Torvald put their own lives at risk to rescue a lamb that was close to drowning. Check out these amazing pics of the rescue!

Erik (20) and Torvald (19) were out and about with a mate taking photos with a new camera when Erik saw the lamb struggling in the waves. Immediately the guys leapt into action and ... well, the photos tell the story. The lamb was reunited with his flock, while Erik and Torvald probably spent the rest of the day rescuing babies from burning buildings and stopping supervillains from taking over the world.

If you reckon this kind of story is inspiring (it gave me goosebumps!) then bear in mind that your decisions every day can have the same impact on an animal's life as these two guys have. Decisions like going meat-free, pledging to not wear leather, or encouraging your oldies to not buy cage eggs (or better yet, try egg replacers!) all make a world of difference to the lives of countless animals.

By making compassionate decisions, you can be a hero for animals, too.

What are some other ways you can think of that Unleashed members can do to help animals?

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Boots Hiding UGGly Cruelty

Boots Hiding UGGly Cruelty

Posted 31 January 2012   by Jane         Permalink | 16 Comments

Tags: sheep, lambs, wool, mulesing, uggies

320px-Ok_DSC4440.JPG

I just heard that a high school in Pennsylvania has banned students from wearing UGG boots to class. Apparently the kids have been hiding all sorts of things in them, from mobile phones to chocolate bars!

But not many people realise that the boots themselves hide an even UGGlier truth. They are made from the skin of Australian sheep -- not just the wool -- the skin.

And it's not just the fact that animals can't actually live without their skin, but sheep raised in Australia for their wool have a tough time from the moment their life begins.

At least 20% of lambs born each year die shortly after birth, from exposure during freezing cold spring nights, infections or fox attacks. That's millions of babies referred to as 'wastage' annually. And those that survive could hardly be called lucky. Lambs are often castrated and have their tails cut off without any pain relief -- wait, that isn't even the worst of it.

Over many generations Aussie farmers have bred Merino sheep to have so much skin (more skin=more wool!) that the wrinkles around the sheep's bum can lead to deadly flystrike. The farmers' solution? Cut off the wrinkles. That's right, no miracle cream here, just cut them off!

imagesphotoslambslinedupformulesingjpg__

And that's exactly what happens. The lambs are restrained on their backs with their little legs tied together while slices of skin are cut away from around their bottoms. This is often done with NO pain relief and always leaves gaping bloody wounds - these are baby animals!

This horror procedure is called mulesing. It's so painfully gruesome that when Pamela Anderson learned of it, she stopped wearing her trademark UGGS straight away and began campaigning against the cruelty and the company.

How is this even legal? I mean if that happened to a kitten or a puppy, the abuser would be charged with animal cruelty. But here in Australia, farm animals just don't get the same legal protection as our pets do, even though they too feel fear and pain. Sheep have even been shown to remember individual faces of their flock mates and people they see regularly. Can you imagine the terror they feel as adults when the person that mutilated their backside upends them again at shearing time?

Please don't support the cruelty of the wool industry. Take the pledge to only wear your own skin and snuggle up with cotton or synthetics. After all, you wouldn't want to look UGGly, would you?

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Check out our Year in Review video!

Check out our Year in Review video!

Posted 13 December 2011   by Jesse         Permalink | 2 Comments

Tags: video, Animals Australia, year in review, live export, factory farming, milk, wool, sheep, cows, chickens

Gosh, what a year it's been! Animal rights hit the mainstream in a big way in 2011. Check out this inspiring vid by Unleashed's big sister, Animals Australia for some of the highlights:

We just want to say a big 'thank you' to you for everything you've done to support our campaigns this year. If you attended a rally, wrote emails or letters, took action on our website, or did anythign else to support our work, then thank you for helping us have such a big impact for animals in 2011.

Here's to another great year in 2012!

p.s. Don't forget to share this video with your friends on facebook and twitter to show them what you've been a part of achieving in 2011.

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RADelaide rallies for sheep!

RADelaide rallies for sheep!

Posted 22 August 2011   by Jane         Permalink | 4 Comments

Tags: rally, activism, live export, sheep, Port Adelaide

On the wharves of Port Adelaide, an animal welfare crisis has been unfolding.

A run down live export ship (actually a 28 year old converted car carrier) hit mechanical trouble when it set out for the Middle East with 67,000 sheep on board and was forced to return to Adelaide after just one day at sea. Trapped on the ship and crammed into tiny pens for over a week, 300 sheep died on board.

After a last-minute protest last Wednesday by Animals Australia, Unleashed members and around 70 locals, the sheep were finally offloaded and sent to a feedlot north of Adelaide.

Then on Saturday, as sheep were still being offloaded, more than 300 people gathered again at the docks to demand these sheep be shown some mercy. They've been through so much already! It's unthinkable that the live exporters still want to ship them back to the Middle East where they will have their throats cut while fully conscious!

Adelaide really stepped up on ultra short notice and I'm pretty proud of my hometown right now. But we still don't know yet what the fate of these poor confused sheep will be. We will be keeping our voices loud for them and I hope you will too.

Make sure you keep an eye on our Facebook page for any new protests that will be coming up, and sign up to the Action Team here so we can alert you to any last minute rallies quick as a flash!

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Ban Live Export National Rally a Huge Success!

Ban Live Export National Rally a Huge Success!

Posted 16 August 2011   by Jesse         Permalink | 16 Comments

Tags: live export, video, rally, protest, cattle, cows, sheep, ban live export

Were you one of the thousands who came out to voice their opposition to live exports at the Ban Live Export National Rally on Sunday? What an amazing turn out and what an amazing atmosphere!

Thank you to everyone who helped send a strong message to politicians that Australians want this cruel trade stopped. If you made it along to the rally, leave a comment below. We'd love to hear about your experience of the day!

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Let's Get Ready to RAAAALLLYYYYYY!

Let's Get Ready to RAAAALLLYYYYYY!

Posted 5 August 2011   by Jane         Permalink | 6 Comments

Tags: Live export, activism, rally, cows, sheep

I'm so excited for the Ban Live Export National Rally I could burst!
Sunday 14th August is the day that legendary people all over the country can rally together to Ban Live Export.

The rallies in each state are shaping up to be huge, with stacks of people clicking "Attending" on the Facebook events. And if you're in Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane, Perth, Adelaide, Canberra or Hobartyou can help us make this even bigger!

And I know there's heaps of people everywhere that were horrified by the footage out of Indonesia that might not be able to make it to a rally but still want to get involved, and you can help too! Here's how:

Spread the word on Facebook. Post this rally page to your wall. Make sure you RSVP there and to your city's Facebook event page (click on your city above). Then invite everyone on your friend list! Get crafty and make some banners! Click here for some ideas on slogans and pictures to use. Be as creative as you want! (Just keep in mind that kids will be there, and that the focus of the rallies needs to stay on banning live export ;) Here are some our of faves:

rally-banner-3.gif rally-banner-2.gif rally-banner-1.gif

Last (but absolutely not least), know where to go! Click here for all the rally deets to make sure you've sussed out the location and how you're going to get there in time for all the action to start. (Parking might be limited so you may need to take a bus, train, tram, helicopter :-P)

Oh! And just to get you in the mood (or maybe this is just my excuse to rock out) check out this clip by The Black Spurs. All about the live export trade, I reckon "It Ain't Right" will be #1 before we know it. First person to learn all the words gets ... um, massive Unleashed cred!

See you on Sunday August 14! Don't be late!

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The Only Voice They've Got

The Only Voice They've Got

Posted 29 July 2011   by Jane         Permalink | 4 Comments

Tags: video, factory farming, chickens, eggs, milk, pigs, bacon, sheep

Every now and then you see a clip that really makes you stop and think. This is undoubtedly one of them:

It's not every day that you'd get such a short vid that manages to get in so many shocking elements in such an effective way.

From the bacon slices to the roast chicken, the eggs, the milk and even the mayonnaise, this talented film maker has provided a voice for pigs, broiler chickens, laying hens and dairy cows in just 30 seconds. All the while flickering this important line "You may be blind to this but you're the only voice they've got".

And the final sound of an innocent sheep crying really brings home the point that we must use our voices to help end the suffering of these exploited animals.

Thanks so much to Brett Ludeman from Storybottle for creating such a haunting vid for Unleashed, and for showing others the reality of their dinner or their cup of milky coffee.

What do you think of this ultra short film? Do you know anyone who would be blind to this? You could share the video and help them open up their eyes and their ears and use their voice to help animals.

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Australia Rallies Against Live Export (& You Can Too!)

Australia Rallies Against Live Export (& You Can Too!)

Posted 20 June 2011   by Jane         Permalink | 6 Comments

Tags: live export, video, rally, protest, cattle, cows, sheep, ban live export

On the weekend, thousands of people attended rallies in cities nationwide with one very clear message for Prime Minister Julia Gillard -- Ban Live Export!

If you missed the rally (or even if you did make it!), the animals still need you to make voice heard: Take part in the Virtual Protest to ban live export. Check it out!

Head here to upload your own protest video now and tell Julia Gillard "If you can't hear the animals, hear us!"

Tonight the campaign train visits the Australian Parliament with Independents Andrew Wilkie and Nick Xenophon and Greens' Adam Bandt introducing bills that, if passed, would finally see an end to live export.

We'll keep you posted on that news. In the meantime - Lights. Camera. Action to ban live export! We can't wait to see your video :)

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Massive News! Live Export Suspended!

Massive News! Live Export Suspended!

Posted 8 June 2011   by Jane         Permalink | 5 Comments

Tags: live export, campaign, animals australia, sheep, cattle, cows

This morning the campaign to Ban Live Export scored a massive win for the animals! The Gillard Government announced they have suspended the entire live trade to Indonesia.

For the moment, this means cattle like Bill, Dudley, Brian, Arthur and Tommy are safe from being shipped to brutal slaughterhouses in Indonesia, but this campaign ain't over yet!

Despite evidence of cruel treatment to Australian animals in other countries, such as throughout the Middle East, Julia Gillard's government has done nothing to prevent Australian animals from being sent to these destinations. The only solution to protect Australian animals from the cruelty of live export, is a total ban on the trade. And on 20th June, Tassie MP, Andrew Wilkie, and SA Senator, Nick Xenophon, will be submitting a bill that, if passed, will do just that -- ban live animal export!

Writer Margaret Mead once said "Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has." Unleashed members and Animals Australia supporters have certainly proved this true in the last week!

Over 235,000 people have signed a petition to Ban Live Export, and Julia Gillard has received more than 100,000 emails in her inbox from shocked Aussies urging her to end the cruelty. People are continuing to donate to get television and radio ads to air. And the Animals Australia and Unleashed Facebook and Twitter pages have been running hot all week with posts, comments and tweets from caring people who have simply refused to let the government to turn a blind eye to animal cruelty.

Perhaps the most surprising result of the campaign so far, has been that the Meat Industry Council has reported a 10-15% DROP IN MEAT! Not only is the government rethinking it's support of this terrible industry, but the Australian public is questioning whether they can trust an industry that knew about the abuse in Indonesia more than a decade ago and yet was still willing to send animals to that terrible fate.

Thank you to everyone who has spoken out and been a part of this campaign so far!

With just over a week to go until the bill to ban live export is tabled in Parliament, it's time to ramp up the campaign! Don't let Julia Gillard and your local MP off the hook until they Ban Live Export for good!

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Save this date: Live export exposed!

Save this date: Live export exposed!

Posted 25 May 2011   by Jane         Permalink | 37 Comments

Tags: live export, investigation, Animals Australia, sheep, cattle, cows

Mark this date in your diary, because you won't want to miss this! Everyone is talking about the story that will air on Monday night (30th May) on Four Corners! The program will feature never-before seen footage from Animals Australia's recent investigation into the treatment of Aussie cattle exported live to Indonesia.

Check the countdown now -- www.BanLiveExport.com!

Every year, millions of animals born into Australian care are exported live, to be killed in countries where there are no laws to protect their welfare.

Over the past seven years, Animals Australia has carried out investigations into the treatment of animals exported live to the Middle East. Footage from past investigations has repeatedly shown the live export industry is happy to export animals to countries regardless of how badly they will be treated. When exposed on national TV, evidence provided by Animals Australia led to a ban on live sheep exports to Egypt, and created massive public opposition to the cruel trade.

This coming Monday night, ABC1's Four Corners will air exclusive footage of exported Australian cattle filmed by Animals Australia investigators in Indonesia.

So tune in and tell all your friends and family to watch this groundbreaking story!
Four Corners airs at 8:30PM, Monday 30th May on ABC1.

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Ultra fine wool? Ultra cruel wool.

Ultra fine wool? Ultra cruel wool.

Posted 24 May 2011   by Jane         Permalink | 2 Comments

Tags: sheep, ultra-fine wool, factory farming, video, George Negus

Did you catch 6.30 with George Negus last night? He aired a shocking story about Australia's new breed of factory farming - battery sheep. If you missed it, don't despair, here's the video:

Unbelievable, huh? And to think this is all for a fashion trend - ultra-fine wool. Well done to George and the team for running the story!

If you wanna do something to help these poor sheep, join the Unleashed campaign to end the factory farming of sheep! Click here to ask the Victorian Government to ban these cruel single pens.

Then check out this moving video and share it with all your Facebook friends and Twitter followers. Help us get the word out there!

Sheep have been suffering in silence inside these sheds for way too long!

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Japan Ends Whaling Season - Woo!

Japan Ends Whaling Season - Woo!

Posted 22 February 2011   by Jesse         Permalink | 4 Comments

Tags: whales, factory farming, pigs, cows, sheep, intelligence

So by now you've probably heard the good news: Last week Japan called an early end to their whaling season. Woot! Here's hoping this is the end to Japan's whaling program for good! (btw you can sign the petition to call for a permanent end to Japanese whaling here)

I'm glad to see Aussies so passionate about whales. They're amazing animals and harpooning them is just plain awful.. but also, it seems to me that people caring about whales is a sign of hope for other animals. I mean, if people can feel such a strong connection to whales then surely they could feel that same compassion for other animals, right? Sure not all animals weigh 40 tons, live in the ocean and eat krill, but really they're not so different. For example...

They say whales are smarter than your average bear (sorry, for the Yogi reference, I couldn't help myself)... not unlike pigs, who have proven themselves to be quite the clever creatures. In fact, pigs have even been trained to play computer games! Yup... with specially designed joysticks pigs can pick up on how to play intelligence testing games just as quickly as chimpanzees!

Whales are also well known for their strong bonds between mother and calf. Mother and calf... hmm... sounds just like another familiar furry, doesn't it? Mother cows also form a strong bond with their calf within hours of being born, and this bond only strengthens over time.

As for their songs...? Scientists suspect that some species of whales sing to their young - something mother pigs are also known for (not to mention hens clucking to their eggs). But perhaps even more surprisingly, the author Jeffrey Masson tells the story of a pig who liked to sing to the full moon. Now that's something I'd like to see!

But the thing that I think really captures people's imaginations with whales is their playfulness - the way they leap out of the water, often for what seems like the sheer joy of it. I'd like to think that if more people saw footage like this playful kid goat, then the Aussie public would be as concerned about the treatment of farm animals as they are about the hunting of whales. wdyt?

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Call me un-Australian, but ...

Call me un-Australian, but ...

Posted 24 January 2011   by Jane         Permalink | 17 Comments

Tags: Australia, sheep, extinction, environment, MLA

Is a certain television commercial featuring a certain football-has-been telling you how un-Australian you are for not eating lamb on Australia Day driving you crazy? Me too!

A few things to remember:

1. Sheep aren't even originally from Australia.

2. Masses of native vegetation have been cleared to graze sheep, irreversibly changing the Australian landscape.

3. Countless native Australian animals are extinct or endangered because of habitat loss through land clearing (livestock production being one of the main causes of this land clearing). In fact Australasia leads the entire world in species extinction :(

4. Sheep produce methane, a greenhouse gas 21 times more potent than carbon dioxide, which is affecting the whole planet (which btw includes Australia).

5. Sheep have wonderful personalities and are just as smart and deserving as the beloved dogs and cats in the homes of countless Australians.

And finally, this:

Would anyone seriously want that adorably cute and bouncy critter to have to die for their dinner?

These undisputed facts only point to one conclusion - Sam's got it backwards: it's eating lamb that is un-Australian!

Take that Kekovich!

I wanna know how you'll be spending Australia Day? Leave a comment!

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Spot the Difference!

Spot the Difference!

Posted 8 April 2009   by Karen         Permalink | 10 Comments

Tags: live export, spot the difference, MLA, sheep, advertising

Welcome to the first of our exciting "Spot the Difference" series! We find that animal abusers are continually suffering from absurd delusions that animals like being locked in tiny cages that they like being mutilated, and that skinning them alive is not such a bad thing You just have to take one look at their advertising to realise this. In short, we think they're a bit out of touch with reality. So we thought we'd give them a helping-hand and point out what a normal, sane person (who doesn't make money from animal cruelty) can clearly see.

That brings us to our first Spot the Difference candidate. You could almost forgive the live export industry for suggesting that Australia has the 'world's best practice' when you see what they think a live export ship looks like. The sticker below was sent out by Meat & Livestock Australia (MLA) to try and convince people that shipping animals half way round the world only to be killed is much like sending them on a luxury cruise (or is it their depiction of Noah's Ark?).

MLA's Live Export Joke

And here's what cramming tens of thousands of frightened animals into a live export ship actually looks like.

Sheep on an actual Live Export Ship

Sadly that's not the worst of it. Thousands of Australian animals die on these old ships every year, and those who survive the long journeys have their throats cut whilst fully conscious at the other end which makes live export one of the cruellest industries on the planet.

So over to you what tips would you have for MLA to help make their live export stickers a little less laughable? Can you spot the difference?

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