It Would Actually Be Cruel Not to Shear The Sheep – Amazing Alpaca Shearing Technique

Sheep and people have a long history of coexisting. Sheep have provided benefits to humans since the early human race.
Human and wool history can be traced back thousands of years to the dawn of human settlement. Everything from hunting to domestication for food and clothing, humans have relied on sheep
But what about the sheep, though?
​​Needless to say, humans rely on sheep mostly for their wool. We have used wool primarily in clothing. However, there are many misconceptions about sheep shearing. There are lots of myths stating that wool shearing is cruel. But is it?
It would actually be cruel not to shear the sheep. Do you have any idea why? Well, in this blog, we’ll go through the benefits of wool shearing and explain why is it crucial to shear wool.
Sheep Shearing: What Is It?
Sheep shearing is essentially the process of trimming hair/wool off of the sheep. It’s like giving the sheep a haircut. Sheep, unlike other animals, do not shed their wool naturally. This leads to the immense growth of the wool thus making shearing important.
In the early years, shearing was not required for the sheep. Constant evolution from time to time and cross-breeding of sheep for wool by people, some sheep species available now are not able to shed themselves. Thus, shearing is important for domesticated sheep.
Some sheep breeds produce hair rather than wool and shed automatically. Even wild sheep breed available now rub their wool against trees to shed it.
Shearing is done once a year to get rid of a heavy coat of wool. Shearing sheep after the winter season, in the middle or late spring, is also recommended. And it is advised to shear sheep after the winter season during mid or late spring so as to keep sheep cool during summer.
Shearing does not hurt sheep. And while shearing is not necessarily an enjoyable process, it is necessary to shear sheep to maintain their health and hygiene.
Sheep shearing activity takes place in shearing sheds to boost the efficiency of shearing. The Shearing process does not require a lot of equipment. Shearers shear sheep with a sheep shearing machine or a set of sheep shears or clippers.
Why Is Sheep Shearing Important?
Shearing, as previously stated, helps in the health and hygiene of sheep, but what are those benefits? What are the advantages of shearing to the sheep?
The huge volume of wool in sheep’s bodies creates various risks to their health. Excess wool might cause an imbalance in the sheep’s body temperature. During the summer, it might result in overheating, discomfort for the sheep, and can even lead to death.
Excess wool can also hamper the mobility of the sheep. Wool’s weight can make it difficult for sheep to walk and impair their visibility. Furthermore, feces and urine can get trapped in wool, attracting pests, flies, and maggots to the sheep’s bodies.
We all know about the famous “Baarack Sheep” which was found in woods in Australia with more than 75 pounds or around 35 kilos of fleece. Also, another sheep named “Chris” whose wool had grown four to five times and weighed around 89 pounds was found in 2015. When people found them, they could even barely walk.
How Is Sheep Sheared?
Sheep shearing requires much attention. It is a meticulous job and requires a certain process so as to shore the sheep perfectly without harm. So, how are the sheeps sheared perfectly?

  • Sheep need to be laid on their back and their legs should be off the floor. The head of the sheep must be rested over the knees of the shearer.
  • The wool from the back leg to the tail of the sheep is removed first and then followed by shearing on the middle of the belly part.
  • Shearing stroke is done from top to bottom pushing wool away from the shearer. Sheep are rolled slowly on the side while shearing from side and back.
  • Shearing is done in continuous motion and repeatedly starting from the back leg and moving towards the neck, head, and ear part from the stomach or chest part.
  • Shearer shear the wool being diligent and careful so as to remove the wool but also keep the wool in one place and connected.

This process requires much attention to detail and only a professional shearer can shear the sheep perfectly without harming the animal.

In the video below, you can see It Would Actually Be Cruel Not to Shear The Sheep – Amazing Alpaca Shearing Technique
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Video resource : Epic Machines

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