If you wear or have ever worn leather, you definitely need to read this.
Are you flaunting your leather shoes or bags with the label screaming made in Italy or the U.S? Little do you know that your favourite brand is probably fooling you! Although the shoes maybe manufactured in U.S, the raw materials are sent across from China or India. In China, there are no penalties for abusing animals on farms or leather industries. India’s animal-protection laws are also rarely enforced.
Most leather produced and sold in the market is made from the skins of cattle and calves, however leather is also made from sheep, lambs, goats, dogs and pigs. Other species are hunted and killed specifically for their skins, including elephants, crocodiles, alligators, snakes, lizards, zebras, kangaroos and ostriches. Many of these animals suffer the horrors of severe crowding, un-anaesthetized castration, branding, tail-docking and dehorning.
Here are 5 reasons which will make you ditch all your leather products today:
1. Each year more than a billon animals are killed for their skin and flesh.
Leather is the most valuable co-product of the meat industry, which means that it contributes directly to the horrors of factory farming and the slaughter of countless animals each year.
In most of the leather industries around the world the cows are commonly castrated and branded with hot irons while standing on their heads to hold them still, and their tails are cut off without any painkillers. This abuse starts when they’re very young. Shortly after birth, the calves are dragged away from their mothers before throwing them onto the ground to punch holes in their ears. They are also electro shocked, hit and jabbed with metal-tipped sticks. Leather can also be made from exotic animals such as zebras, bison, water buffalo, boars, elephants, eels, sharks, dolphins, seals, walruses, alligators, crocodiles, ostriches, kangaroos and snakes. The reptiles are often kept in very small tanks, which causes the animal’s injuries and stress. Alligators on farms may be beaten to death, and sometimes they remain conscious and in agony several hours after they have been skinned. Orphaned or injured kangaroos are allowed to be decapitated or hit sharply on the head to destroy the brain. Snakes may be skinned alive because of the false belief that live flaying makes exotic leather supply.
Getting into assumptions and following the lead of a misconception can cause great damage and suffrage. Most of the people around the world are prompt to a belief that leather is a byproduct of the meat industry that means it’s simply a leftover and if it won’t be used, the leather will go to waste. The truth beneath this belief is that much of the leather sold today comes from animals killed primarily for their skins. Following this common misconception has led to a major massacre of innocent animals globally.
The world’s leading leather exporter is China, where there are no penalties for abusing animals on farms. Apart from cattle, sheep and other animals killed for leather, approximately 2 million cats and dogs are killed for their skins each year. The dogs and cats spend their lives in tiny wire cages and they feel the ground beneath their feet for the first time on the day of their slaughter. At the slaughterhouse, the workers grab the dogs with metal pinchers and bash them over the head with a pole. Many dogs don’t fall unconscious, and they cry out and writhe in agony. The cats and dogs are often skinned and hacked to pieces while they’re still alive and struggling to breathe. Dog leather is also produced in Thailand, where the animals are subject to the same abuse as in China.
5. Turning skin into leather uses dangerous and cancer causing chemicals
The skins are processed in makeshift tanneries with workers, including children, knee deep in toxic chemicals. Without tanning, leather shoes would rot right off your feet. Animal skin is turned into finished leather by the application of a variety of dangerous substances, including mineral salts, formaldehyde, coal-tar derivatives, and various oils, dyes, and finishes some of them cyanide based.
Animals cannot choose for themselves but you can. Please don’t buy leather and choose affordable and animal friendly alternatives instead.