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Australian Wool Is Baaad to the Bone

Written by PETA | March 9, 2011

As Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard addressed a joint session of the U.S. Congress this morning, PETA members stood outside the Capitol with posters showing lambs who were victims of Australia’s cruel mulesing mutilation.

Mulesing involves forcing lambs onto their backs and restraining them with metal bars. Large chunks of the animals’ skin and flesh are either carved off or clamped with vise-like grips until the skin and flesh die and fall off. Both procedures are very painful, and sheep are rarely given adequate pain relief. Mulesing is a crude attempt to prevent flies from laying eggs in the folds of sheep’s skin, but flystrike can be controlled in more effective and humane ways, as some Australian sheep farmers are already doing.

You can help end this mutilation by urging the Australian prime minister to push for all farmers to adopt humane methods of flystrike prevention.

Written by Michelle Sherrow

Commenting is closed.
  • PETA says:

    Geees, there are many alternatives to mulesing, including selection for less susceptible breeds, increased monitoring and treatment, insecticides, vaccinations, topical applications, baited traps, and improved farm-management practices. Dissenting voices from within the wool industry agree with PETA that mulesing can be eliminated now—since viable alternatives exist—but industry groups cling to cruel methods rather than pursuing sensible and humane solutions. To read more about the wool industry’s broken promise, please go to

  • teacherman says:

    A few points to raise as an Aussie: 1. Julian Gillard doesn’t have the authority to stop mulesing, she can only raise it in parliment. 2. Should she order a stop to it – this would require a dictatorship, which we don’t have. 3. Not all Australian wool producers mules sheep, most have voluntarily phased it out – there are only a few left who are doing it. Australian’s seem to be tarnished as callous animal-welfare thugs, when in fact we have very strong animal welfare laws with harsh penalties. Please respect and acknowledge that there are a vast majority of Australians making a difference.

  • maureen rice says:

    Stop these animals suffering.

  • Alena says:

    Geees: I wish uneducated Aussies would consider using painkillers and appropriate medical care after applying “the most efficient manner”. Sorry about that, but not only Americans are involved in this topic and I wouldn’t underestimate other people sources just because they are not from Australia. (MVDr. Alena M., University of Veterinary and Pharmaceutical Sciences Brno, Czech Republic)

  • Shilps says:

    This one is for Geees who supports mulesing.With all due respect to your viewpoint, I’d like to say that we know that this method prevents the lambs from becoming flyblown however there could be more human alternatives, viz z viz painkillers!

  • wnyer says:

    @Geees, Stop butching animals, cutting off their legs while alive. Maybe someone should get ahold of you and perform the same act, see how you would enjoy it.

  • ana says:

    Please,lets stop with this atrocities,now!

  • Barbara Rauh says:

    Please, stop the cruel practice. Place yourself in this poor animal’s place. Please, please stop.

  • Sharon F. says:

    Just saw Pink’s gruesome video of the sheeps’ suffering and torture. Animal exploitation is a moral crime. Abstaining from it is NOT a personal choice, as some people think. It is a MUST for all decent human beings, the least that we can do for innocent animals, who have committed no crime.

  • kathy says:

    Please stop treating animals as if they don’t feel.

  • M says:


  • Shruti Seshadri says:

    This is cruel and horrible. why should the lambs go through all this pain!

  • Teresa Dawes says:

    This must stop…there are other ways of shearing sheep, why are you always thinking of the almighty $ before the sake of these poor animals.

  • francisca lau says:

    Is barbaric and unnecesary, also cruel from my point of view. I hope we can make a change with sign this petition.

  • Geees...... says:

    I wish uneducated Americans would back off this topic. At the moment mulesing is the most efficient manner in which farmers can ensure lambs do not succumb to flystrike, which causes far more suffering than mulesing ever could. When lambs are allowed to grow wool near there bottoms the left over waste attracts flies. These flies lay eggs which burrow into the lambs skin, causing untold pain. Our only alternative at the moment is crutching, which involves shaving the area several times a year. As this much labour just isn’t feasible in some farms, I would much prefer the lambs endured temporary pain in their mulesing rather than be left to the flies. I’m a vegetarian and an Aussie, and I really wish people would do a bit more investigation before the condemned a countrie’s major industries. We’ve been through enough lately without having our wool boycotted. Thanks.

  • Tracey Webber says:

    Prime Minister Gillard, I voted for you in 2010 election.PLEASE, for sheeps sake,put an end to MULESING in our great country.We must be pioneers of alternative methods to stopping sheep becoming flyblown. We also have Bob Brown,a Green,he would agree. I implore you to help the animals who cannot help themselves. All the best Julia.Regards, Tracey.PH: 0402933285

  • jojocat says:

    Disgustingly cruel

  • Ahmad Wali says:

    I am with PETA on every single action! I am shocked after watching videos. Please stop animal torture 🙁

  • kinky kat says:

    im a vegan!