On the heels of recent Humane Society undercover investigations into chicken cruelty, pig cruelty, and Tennessee walking horse cruelty, a Mercy For Animals hidden-camera operation at a livestock auction in L.A. has revealed "an ongoing pattern of cruelty, egregious violence, and severe neglect," including:
- "Downed" animals -- those too sick or injured to even stand or walk on their own -- being left to slowly suffer and die without food, water or veterinary care.
- Sick, injured and dying animals being kicked, pushed and dragged into transport trucks to be sold and slaughtered for human consumption.
- Workers throwing, beating, stomping on and kicking animals in the face and body.
- Baby goats being carelessly picked up by their necks and then kicked or tossed around.
- Workers grabbing, dragging and throwing animals by their heads, necks, ears, horns, tails, and legs.
- Birds stuffed into bags and goats, sheep and other animals overcrowded into small pens, forcing animals to stand on and even trample each other.
After reviewing the footage, Temple Grandin, Ph.D., an animal welfare advisor to the USDA, wrote: "The handling was very rough and kicking animals is not acceptable. If this auction had been a federally inspected meat packing plant, they would have suspended inspection and shut them down."
MFA's exposé has prompted a further investigation by law enforcement, and seven employees and the auction's owner have been charged with a total of 21 counts of animal cruelty. The case is ongoing.
(Heads up -- footage is graphic.)