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Update: Sheep Perish on Death Ship

Written by PETA | August 19, 2011

Update: After the Australian RSPCA was at last permitted to board the disabled ship, they discovered that at least 200 sheep had already died. The surviving sheep are being unloaded and sent to a feedlot, a process that is expected to take several days. Australia’s agriculture minister acknowledged that hundreds of sheep had died but shrugged off the deaths as being “expected.”

The following was first published on August 16th.


For the past week, 67,000 sheep have struggled to survive inside a crowded, filthy multitier ship in Australia. We’re betting that not all of them have made it. The sheep―either discarded by the wool industry or bred for meat―were bound for slaughter in the Middle East, a grueling journey, but when the ship experienced mechanical problems, the captain turned the ship around and returned to Australia.

Now the ship is sitting at  the dock, and the sheep have been left on board to suffer in cramped quarters, mired in their own waste. Eventually, one supposes, it will be back out to sea again for these unfortunate animals.

The voyage from Australia to the Middle East can take weeks, during which time many sheep commonly starve to death, are trampled, or become ill and die, their bodies tossed overboard. Upon arrival, the survivors are dragged from the ship, thrown into the backs of trucks, and driven to slaughter, where they have their throats cut while fully conscious.

Please urge Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard to put a stop to the immense suffering endured by millions of sheep and other animals every year by banning live export. 


Written by Michelle Sherrow

Commenting is closed.
  • leah malczynski says:

    What is the point of that? Really I can’t imagine that you have an actual reason, if so I’d like to see that. All this proves is how uneducated your government is, why would you want to be seen as that? Wouldn’t you rather be supported by all these people than hated for being ignorant?

  • Chigger says:

    Why? This is disgusting. We think we’re above animals but when people do things like this even the most disgusting parasites are above us.

  • Samantha Payne says:

    This is shameful.

  • stefanie klockow says:

    Julia Gillard, how can this not make you feel sick on your stomach??? Do something to stop it!!!!!!!!

  • Christina Pierce says:

    This is completely insane. what is wrong with these people? and how do they live with themselves day after day, knowing full well the horror they are causing these animals?!?! there is ALWAYS a better way to deal with this…torturing them in the meantime is not the way!!!

  • Caroline Gerner says:

    Dear Miss Gillard, I’m from Germany and I read about this horrible trip for the sheeps to the slaughterhouse. Please stop this live exports, because the animals also have feelings and fear what is going on with them and please help them to make it more bearable for them and stop these live exports as far as possible. Imagine you’re a sheep and be in agony, would you like it? I can understand, that people eat meal, but must we carry the animals live into other countries just to slaughter them there? Isn’t it fair that the animals have to bear so many torments?

  • anne says:

    this is disgusting tese poor animals are suffering in awful conditions THIS IS NOT ACCEPTABLE

  • Michelle says:

    I think this is a horrible act of cruelty. No animals on this earth deserve this type of treatment. Or even to be slaughtered. Please stop this, I don’t know how anyone could sleep at night knowing this inhumanaine act of cruelty is going on.

  • Lindsey says:

    Please aid in the ending of suffering for these sheep.

  • sia says:

    Please end live export. Take a moment to think how much they are suffering. Animals feel pain, frustrations and depression just like we do. Australia seems to be an advanced country. This is quite a shock to the world to know Australia is not using its power to stop unnecessary pains like these.

  • Samantha Payne says:

    This is just shameful.

  • Jane Collins says:

    this is just wrong!! Where is the humanity, these are living creatures-shame!!

  • Dee says:

    Julia, I beg you to end this horror of an industry immediately. Wool is not essential to human survival and the lives these beautiful, sentient beings endure is far too cruel to be justified. The power is in your hands to change the world for the lives of millions. Be the caretaker you are called to be as a human being in your position and end this cruelty now! You will be a hero forever. Please Julia, do the right thing. These little precious lives are counting on YOU.

  • kkucy says:

    STOP THIS!!!!!!!!! NOT FARE!!!!!

  • april says:

    Please stop the suffering of all animals..humans dont even go through this tortuer

  • rebecca finn says:

    Please do something about this now, if you wouldnt do it to a child/children, dont do it to animals. Thank you

  • Marco Ajuria says:

    Please, Prime Minister Julia Gillard, put a stop to the immense suffering endured by millions of sheep and other animals every year by banning live export.  The voyage from Australia to the Middle East can take weeks, during which time many sheep commonly starve to death, are trampled, or become ill and die, their bodies tossed overboard. Upon arrival, the survivors are dragged from the ship, thrown into the backs of trucks, and driven to slaughter, where they have their throats cut while fully conscious.

  • Jean says:

    Pleass put an end to sending live animals. They endure so much pain in everday life. Please do not add to their pain and suffering by sending them in ships over seas.

  • Carol Delahoyde says:

    Yes…they are sheep….but why do you treat them this way. Have you people have not conscience or heart. Please stop the cruelty. Thank you, Carol Delahoyde.

  • Julia Wiles says:

    All I can say is shameful…shameful…shameful…such agony should not be endured by any living creature. Please stop this madness. Thanks for your consideration

  • Sue Dermody says:

    Outrageous. I’m shocked this happens in Australia. Was planning on visiting with family. Rethinking this for sure

  • Michelle says:

    This is a disgrace and is inhumane and it must stop NOW!

  • Jane Veg Osh says:

    End Live Export – Think about Ending Slaughter too !!!

  • Bev says:

    This is cruel treatment. Just as for the slaves that were brought over many years ago. What is wrong with humanity?!! Do you not have any compassion or heart?!! Stop this now!! It is so inhumane!!!

  • Michelle says:

    This is sad..It needs to stop.People need to stop treating these animals and other animals as they are trash.Not worth the compassion most murderers get in prison.They deserve much more love and compassion..

  • Britta says:

    This is disgusting!!! You should be ashamed for allowing this to happen. A change is needed NOW!!!

  • Jena Sendra says:

    Please stop this! It is inhumane.

  • Rhonda says:

    This is disgusting, and I am amazed that anyone can justify the cruelty placed on innocent creatures.

  • Alesa Weslager says:

    This makes me sick, thinking about it. You should be ashamed of what you are doing to these poor animals. They are beautiful animals, god’s animals and do not deserve this. Us there wool by shaving them, but let them live happy lives in fields and pastors grazing and being free. Would you like it, if we stuck you on a cargo ship, with it being hot, dirty, and you were awaiting your death. We are no different than animals, when it is our time we want to go in peace, and die of old age, not be murdered for no apparent reason. This is animal cruelty and you know it. You would feel differently if the tables were turned, so please think before you load another boat of poor, helpless, animals that just want to be free and live their lives as we do.

  • Claudia Schönberger says:

    Dear Prime Minister Julia Gillard, Please, put a stop to the immense suffering endured by millions of sheep and other animals every year by banning live export. Yours sincerly Claudia Schönberger

  • claudia coin says:

    Stop this crime!

  • Caliendo Elena says:

    please stop it!!

  • Sunny says:

    Please do the right thing and put these sheep in a comfortable area with food , water, and a place to lie down.

  • Nicholay Roald says:

    Is it really more i portant to reel in some more money on carbon tax, or maybe the peoples elected officials should concern themselves with more ethical matters?

  • suguna muthusamy says:

    please put to an end to all these suffering endured by all animals every year by banning live will be blessed.

  • Kay Hoffman says:

    I have just found out about the sheep that are sent to the Middle East to be slaughtered, I can’t believe that this is happening, it is just barbaric. How cruel, non caring, I am so astounded and shocked. Please please please put an end to the suffering these sheep are experiencing and please consider stopping this awful trade.

  • Gloria Gonzales says:

    This is so inhumane! 🙁

  • francesca mazzamuto says:

    it’s a shame!!!! we can’t let them make this to these poor animals!!!!! i’m so disgusted!!!

  • Mary Quirk says:

    Please God – find a way to save these animals quickly. They must be suffering terribly. Nothing as innocent as an animals deserves to be treated so horribly. Please do whatever you can as fast as you can to save these creatures. And then do whatever it takes so this never happens to another animals again. Thank you

  • Louise says:

    Ms. Gillard, this issue of live export from Australia has been popular around the world. The world has agreed, this must stop. You have seen the unbearable cruelty awaiting these beautiful Australian sheep. At this time, you are the one with the power to end this. Take this advantage to become a hero in your country, not a villan as you have recently been portrayed.

  • Anja De Craecker says:

    Stop live export! With all the animals!!

  • Jackie says:

    Please stop this terrible cruelty!! Don’t people have any feelings or empathy?

  • Grace Larsh says:

    This is torture and should not be allowed, these are living breathing beings. Would you like to live like they are forced to, they need your help. If you have any sence of compansion you will make this a priority.

  • Carey Winicki says:

    Please i pray that these poor sheep will not be slaughered, this is so inhumane the way you are doing this! please put an end to live export.

  • Amy says:

    Please Stop !

  • lynn tor says:

    oh I can hardly beleive this. Disgraceful

  • Humans should be ashamed says:

    I would urge everyone to support this PETA petition. This is disgraceful that such behaviour is legal.

  • Sheri Martini says:

    This is intolerable cruelty! Please put an end to it! Have mercy for God’s sake!

  • Get Real says:

    Please everyone write to Julia Gillard to end live export! It is Australia’s shame and I am Australian.

  • kathy says:

    In 1995 a town in England successfully stop sheep from being exported by coming out daily to impede the activity. I quoted this from a site I found online. “At Brightlingsea the transport trucks, loaded three tiers high with sheep, had to pass through the town’s narrow streets to reach the port. Some local residents turned out spontaneously to stand in front of the trucks to impede them. The confrontation started in January 1995 and no one foresaw that it would develop into a battle lasting nine months. Residents of a town turning out for animals is an almost singular development in animal rights. Among the people were ordinary workers, housewives, school children and grannies, who had never been on a demonstration before…More transport trucks rolled through the town and more residents took to the streets to block them. The people innocently believed the police would turn the animal transports back. However, the transports were prepared and over a hundred police in riot gear arrived to escort them through the town. Protesters daily confronted the transport convoys from now on and the police always turned out in force to clear a way to the port. By February the animals were being transported to the port every day. The issue drew in protesters from much further afield. On some days up to 2,000 people lined the streets to heckle and shake their fists at the transport drivers…The Brightlingsea protesters did not succeed in stopping a single one of the 150 or so convoys. But the cost of exporting the animals in the face of active protest was too expensive and ceased. The protesters had won.”