Shearing Time Again

Every girl just wants a cute dress WITH pockets, right? Butter made her and own this year, and it’s perfect for hiding cookies for later.

BUT… it’s getting too hot for these outfits and our yearly shearing time has come again. It’s a necessary part of caring for animals who were bred for their fiber, and it’s thankfully just once yearly but costly part of their care. This weekend is our first of a few shearing appointments needed for over 50 animals with non-shedding coats, alpacas, llamas, sheep and goats.

In nature, sheep and goats naturally lost and grew their coats with the seasons, but through breeding we’ve manipulated them into keeping their coats so that they could be sheared all at once. They are trapped in that fur even when temperatures are so hot it could be detrimental to their health.

Lots of people will ask why we don’t just sell the fiber to offset the cost of shearing. A few reasons…

1. The “good” or valuable fiber comes from young animals, and after those first couple years the quality of the fiber declines and those animals are then used for meat. Like the dairy industry, the fiber industry becomes the meat industry when production or quality declines.

2. Raw fiber goes through lots of steps to make it useable, and so raw fiber doesn’t actually bring in much money. Many of the hoarding cases/owner surrenders we’ve worked came from the idea that someone would raise fiber animals and make a profit, but soon find that the sale of fiber comes nowhere near what it takes to provide an animal with high quality care year round and care can no longer be afforded. Again, part of what makes the fiber industry viable is the part where the animals are sold for meat.

3. At its core, us selling fiber would make us complacent with a system that we know uses animals and is not kind. The same reason we quit the dairy industry is the reason we don’t want to be a part of the fiber industry. Agree or disagree with it, why become a part of an industry we rescue FROM?

Wanna help us get everyone their much needed and well deserved spa days and makeovers?

Venmo: @brokenshovels

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