Anonymous asked in Food & DrinkVegetarian & Vegan · 9 years ago

Why do vegans refuse to wear wool?

Why won't vegans wear wool. They do not kill the sheep to get wool like they do with sheep skin. I have a beautiful baby lamb (she is a pet and best freind to my pony) and have never even tasted lamb or mutton in my life (never plan on doing so), but would it really be unethical for me to shave my own lamb and harvest her wool? I live in the desert, so it's not like she would need that wool in July to stay warm. Thoughts please...

15 Answers

  • 9 years ago
    Best Answer

    Vegan do not use animals products because they believe that it belongs to the animal, not to humans. Some wool farms are exploiting sheep. They can be very rough and even shear of a bit of the sheep's skin. Even if it isn't harming or killing an animal, they believe it is unnatural. It's not like sheep's use are human hair that has been cut as hair extensions so why should we?

    Vegans don't eat meat, fish and animal products, and don't want to wear wool simply just to have the name "vegan", even though they may not be strictly against it.

    Not my opinion...but here you go!

  • 9 years ago

    Vegans are opposed to animal "slavery" whether or not the animal is harmed in the process and regardless of how well the animal is treated. The point is that the animal cannot consent to humans using their eggs, milk, wool or whatever for their (the humans') own purposes. And even if they could, we "own" them, and we don't pay them.

    Anyway, contrast how the sheep is used as opposed to a pet poodle. The poodle is kept neatly bathed, groomed and clipped every month, for the dog's comfort (and the human's sense of beauty). The sheep's hair is left to grow in a tangled mess for an entire year, then the sheep is shorn to its skin. This has nothing to do with the sheep's comfort, and everything to do with getting maximum value for the wool.

  • 9 years ago

    Part of being vegan is not eating/wearing animal products. This includes wool. That's just the way that it works. I question it sometimes myself, but I am a devoted vegan and follow the rules.

    If you feel comfortable shaving your lamb, and harvesting her wool, do so. You are not hurting her, this is true. Do what feels right.

    Source(s): Vegan :]
  • Suzy Q
    Lv 7
    9 years ago

    Short answer: no, it is not unethical for you to shear her. She NEEDS to be shorn.

    Longer answer: she has been bred to grow a thick coat of wool all year round instead of naturally losing the wool in late spring, so she needs a little help to achieve what nature doesn't provide any more. Even apart from the weather: shearing her once a year helps her get rid of about 90% of the parasites burrowing around in her fleece, bringing her intense discomfort. Shearing dramatically decreases the need to use chemicals to keep her free from lice.

    Given the fact that shearing her means there will be ethically obtained wool available there is nothing unethical about using that wool. You're not exploiting your sheep, it's a win-win situation for the both of you.

    Think of it this way: I brush my cat to help her get rid of loose hairs that would otherwise turn into hair balls, causing her discomfort. I trim the fur of my long-haired guinea pigs (I got them from a shelter, I wouldn't breed animals with completely unpractical fur for human entertainment) to help them stay clean and cool. Those are acts of caring for those animals. Now the guinea pig and cat hair is unsuitable to spin and knit sweaters with. But if it WERE suitable for that purpose and I actually used the hair that way, would my acts of caring suddenly be transformed into acts of exploitation? I say no.

    I wouldn't dream of contradicting somebody who calls themselves vegan and wears wool obtained in this specific way. A vegan wearing wool obtained in regular wool production would be a whole other story.

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  • Moojoo
    Lv 6
    9 years ago

    Because a lot of commercial wool comes from farms that don't treat the animals well. And that's perfectly fair.

    But if anyone gives you crap for shaving your lamb's wool and spinning it and all that to make a sweater, then... well, punch them. Sorry, I'm in a very angry mood. I'd say it would be unethical for you NOT to shave her, since sheep are adapted to cold climates and can easily overheat in hot ones if they aren't shaved. And it would just be wasteful for you to just throw out all that soft comfy wool. Technically it isn't vegan, but who the hell cares?

  • 9 years ago

    i think it has to do with their view on the treatment of animals. If it comes from an animal they want nothing to do with it. They probably consider it unnatural or unethical. There is nothing wrong with you using your lambs wool -if you want to- as it does not actually harm the animal. That is matter of your ethical beliefs and this has been done for thousands of years for the making of clothing. It is not wrong either way.

  • anon
    Lv 5
    9 years ago

    Just because one person (of of the dozens of others) take care of another creature AND harvest their fur/milk/etc. it doesn't make it right. Would you agree with, "Oh, well my master takes care of me. I get to live in the house and everything! But yeah I'm still his slave"?

    Also, many farmers dock the sheep's tail and castrate them. How is that nice?

    I do agree that a sheep should get a haircut if they are getting too hot and uncomfortable. In fact, they'd probably enjoy a little trim. But I feel you should not profit from it.

  • 9 years ago

    Some sheep actually like it. There are big wool chains who just cut the hair off the sheep so fast that they leave cuts and razor burns on the sheep. Vegans don't like anything that comes from an animal, even if they're not being killed or hurt. Vegetarians just don't like to eat or consume anything that comes from a dead animal. We can't have anything that's killed to make it, but we will consume dairy and eggs because the animals weren't killed to get it. Leather, fur, snakeskin, and ivory all have to come from an animal that was killed.

    People have to watch out for false PETA propaganda on for their information.

    Source(s): Vegetarian over 5 years.
  • 9 years ago

    They do not use any animal products whatsoever, whether or not it hurts the animal. So, no honey, no free range eggs etc etc and no wool. Clip your lamb if you want. Bear in mind though that insulation works for heat as well as for cold. You don't want it to get sunburnt.

  • 9 years ago

    The whole vegan concept was about not taking anything from the animal.

    Donald Watson saw humans taking everything- and not giving anything back.

    BEsides, even the benign action of shearing a sheep leads to the death march of killing them later.

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