Cruel Rabbit Slaughter Is 'Common Practice' According To Government

<p> Image courtesy Last Chance for Animals </p>

Last Chance for Animals went undercover at Pel-Freez, the largest rabbit slaughterhouse in the United States, and documented horrific abuse.

The video that the undercover investigator took showed workers at the Pel-Freez Arkansas plant routinely breaking the rabbits' rear legs and then improperly stunning the animals before decapitating them at the start of processing, which means they had their throats slit while still alive - kicking and screaming in pain.

Last Chance for Animals has already asked Benton County Prosecuting Attorney Nathan Smith to file animal cruelty charges against the workers, citing 323 instances where rabbits were conscious at the time of slaughter and another 193 where rabbits experienced pain and distress, both in the presence of plant supervisors as well as USDA inspectors (who are there to inspect the finished product, the meat, and not the slaughterhouse methods or the pain the animals experience).

Unfortunately, the prosecutor will not be filing charges because the methods used at the plant were "common practice" and the workers did not "knowingly" violate state animal cruelty laws. This means that all rabbit slaughterhouses use these "common practices" today, so tens of thousands of rabbits per month die in this sickening fashion.

As many people know (but most people probably do not), rabbits and "poultry" are not covered under the USDA Humane Methods of Slaughter Act, which at least nominally ensures that pigs, cows, sheep, and other animals raised for meat are slaughtered humanely (i.e. stunned before they are killed). The USDA does not consider either rabbits or birds to be worthy of coverage under this law - one of less than a handful in the United States that protect farmed animals at all. Rabbits - now the third most popular companion mammal in the United States - and chickens both lack this most basic protection from horrific pain and suffering.

How can you help end this unbelievable cruelty?

Sign the petition here demanding charges to be filed.

Contact the USDA demanding that rabbits and chickens be added to the Humane Methods of Slaughter Act.