In Transport, Animals Suffer Freezing Conditions with No Food or Water

You’ve likely seen these trucks on the highway packed with pigs, chickens, or other farmed animals. As young as six weeks old, in the case of chickens, farmed animals are crammed onto the trucks and sent to slaughter.

In crowded beds or stacked crates, animals suffer long, grueling journeys, up to 28 hours in the United States, with no food or water.

And transport trucks are not built to protect animals from harsh weather.

During summer, temperatures in the trucks rise to well over 100°F. Many animals suffer heat stress, asphyxiation, and heart attack.

In winter, farmed animals endure below-freezing conditions and are exposed to snow, rain, and frigid winds. Some die from hypothermia, and others even freeze to the floors or sides of truck beds. In January 2016, 27 pigs froze to death while being transported from Alberta to a slaughterhouse near Vancouver.

While animals suffer during transport all over the world, Mercy For Animals went undercover in Mexico and Canada to reveal this cruelty.

A 2014 Mercy For Animals exposé of Western Hog Exchange in Alberta uncovered pigs beaten and forced into packed transport trucks. Some died from disease, dehydration, and hypothermia—before even making it to their destination.

In Mexico, a Mercy For Animals undercover investigator witnessed pigs foaming at the mouth in trucks with no protection from rain, wind, or heat. “The animals seemed to know the fate that awaited them at the slaughterhouse,” the investigator said. “And they were fighting for their lives.”

After years of allowing millions of animals to die during transport every year, Canada released new regulations in February 2020, reducing the number of hours animals could be transported without food, water, and rest. But for most animals, such journeys still last over a day. Some animals, such as cows and sheep, suffer in transport trucks without food and water for up to 36 hours. This change is not enough.

The best thing we can do to stop this unconscionable cruelty is to choose more plant-based foods and encourage others to do the same. Get your FREE Vegetarian Starter Guide today, and check out our Pinterest page for thousands of vegan recipes!