Snakes are beautiful and mysterious animals who have an unearned negative reputation. Some people have even come to fear these stunning animals but they have more reasons to fear us than we do to fear them.
Every year, at least 440,000 pythons are slaughtered in Indonesia, Malaysia, and Vietnam just to be made into frivolous fashion accessories. The true number is probably much higher, as this figure doesn’t account for the thousands of illegally traded pythons who are exported annually.
Most are torn from their own homes, often hunted down deep in the jungles of Indonesia and Malaysia.
Once they are captured, their heads are often forced down and severed with a machete. Others have their heads nailed to a tree and their skins slowly peeled off. Because of their slow metabolisms, snakes remain conscious and able to feel pain and fear long after they are decapitated.
If they aren’t beheaded or nailed to a tree, they are bludgeoned and beaten. Their jaws are forced open so that a tube can be jammed down their throats in order to pump their bodies full of water and make the skins easier to remove. Ropes are tied tightly around their necks to prevent any fluids from escaping their bodies.
Bloated, suffering, and dying slowly, they can be left hanging for more than 10 minutes.
Their bodies are slit open from end to end to loosen their once strong and protective skin.
Once the skin is limp, it is ripped from the snakes’ bodies. The snakes’ skins are no longer their own and are now the prized possession of their captors. The skins are shipped off to tanneries to be finished and sold to the fashion industry.
Because of the techniques used by bloody-handed hunters, many snakes are still alive as they are tossed into a pile of their own kind and left to die slowly. Their lives no longer have meaning to their captors, and they often suffer for several days before dying from dehydration.
Snakes are not the only animals who suffer for fashion. Millions of lizards, alligators, crocodiles, and other reptiles are violently killed every year so that their skins can be torn from their bodies to make wallets, belts, boots, and handbags. Reptiles may be cold-blooded, but wearing their skins is cold-hearted.
Please Stop using leather and urge others to do the same!