PETA Set to Release Meat-Allergy–Inducing Ticks in Northeastern U.S.

Published by Michelle Kretzer.

We do get a little ticked off that some people are still eating animals, but we are not alone: Apparently, so does at least one breed of ticks. Scientists have discovered that the bite of the Lone Star tick causes people to develop an allergy to meat. Once a person has been bitten, if he or she eats meat, things can get a little uncomfortable and a hives-like rash can break out within hours. That gave PETA the germ of an idea, and we’d like your input.

Currently, the ticks are predominantly found in the southeastern United States. But PETA has hatched a plan to release Lone Star ticks in parks in the Northeast, hoping that warming weather and moist conditions will help the ticks thrive. PETA’s Don Beleav, a biologist who is investigating the feasibility of the project, explained how the resulting meat allergies will greatly benefit human beings who come into contact with the ticks:

Just as leeches purify the blood, these tiny insects can help people kick a habit that sucks for animals, human health, and the environment,” says Beleav. “Obviously, PETA’s main goal is to prevent animal suffering, but going vegetarian or vegan helps people lose weight, boosts their immune systems, and lowers their risk of three of our nation’s  biggest killers—heart disease, cancer, and strokes.” Beleav continues, “Really the only pushback we anticipate will be from fast-food companies. Maybe McDonald’s will start handing out free flea and tick collars with its value meals!

PETA is also considering offering the bugs by mail for anyone itching to go vegetarian but lacking the willpower to do so.

See the update to PETA’s plan here.


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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind