I remember visiting my aunt and uncle’s house and thinking (even as a child) that their decor was weird as shit.?Not because of the plastic-covered couches or the baby poop–green carpet—it was the taxidermied deer’s head hanging on the wall that really grossed me TF out.
My uncle was an avid hunter and proudly displayed parts of the animals he killed on the wall for others to “admire.” But all those severed body parts really represented were animals who wanted to live. Hunting is a violent blood sport that tears families apart and wreaks havoc on ecosystems. And that’s nothing to be proud of. ?
The stress that hunted animals endure—caused by fear and the inescapable loud noises and commotion that hunters create—negatively affects their normal eating habits, making it difficult for them to store the fat and energy that they need to survive the winter. For animals like wolves, who mate for life and live in close-knit family units, hunting can devastate entire packs. In addition, quick kills aren’t a certainty when hunting, and many animals endure prolonged, painful deaths when they’re hurt but not killed immediately by hunters.
Removing hunted animals’ insides and then preserving their skin and “stuffing” them doesn’t make a great centerpiece or elegant wall art. Instead of being proud of these collections of dead bodies, people should be embarrassed ?, because all they really show are people’s cold hearts and the blood on their hands.
It’s not just mammals who are displayed, either—people also decorate their homes with the bodies of dead fish. Just like the animals we share our homes with, fish are individuals who have their own unique personalities, and they experience pain and fear. When hooked and removed from their natural environment, they suffer and begin to suffocate. Their gills often collapse, and their swim bladders can rupture because of the sudden change in pressure. That’s cruel AF.
The delicate balance of nature’s ecosystems ensures the survival of most species. Natural predators help maintain this balance by killing only the sickest and weakest individuals. In contrast, hunters try to kill the biggest and strongest animals to hang over their fireplaces, but these animals are needed to keep the gene pool strong.
Buying taxidermied animals secondhand or from a store isn’t any better—because you never really know where the bodies came from. It’s not likely that a taxidermied animal died from natural causes—trophy animals are killed specifically to become decorations.
Taxidermy is cruel. If you want to embellish your home with an animal-themed decoration that no one had to die for, there are plenty of artists who create #VeganTaxidermy!
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