Today’s Animal World: Our Co-Inhabitants will be presented in Swedish, with subtitles in Arabic, Aulacese (Vietnamese), Chinese, English, French, German, Indonesian, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Malay, Mongolian, Persian, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, Swedish and Thai.

The images in the following program are highly sensitive and may be as disturbing to viewers as they were to us. However, we have to show the truth about cruelty to animals, praying that you will help to stop it.

This is the Stop Animal Cruelty series on Supreme Master Television. This week we’ll address the senseless exploitation and brutal slaughter of reindeer, some of the world’s most adored and beloved animals.

The World Society for the Protection of Animals (WSPA) made headlines in 2010 by publicizing footage of the ruthless capture of reindeer in Sweden for meat. Roger Pettersson, Secretary General of the World Society for the Protection of Animals Sweden was present during the filming of the capture and discussed with us the abhorrent treatment of these beautiful beings.

I work for the World Society for the Protection of Animals. And we are one of the world's largest animal welfare organizations. And our vision, what we want to work for, what we want to create is a world where people are respecting the needs of the animals’ welfare, and end any mistreatment of animals.

And we are working on different levels to achieve this. We work with governments, but we also work with the state bodies like the United Nations, European Commission etc. And then we work together with all our member organizations. We have member organizations in about 150 countries.

Usually when you see or think of reindeer, you see Santa who comes with the reindeer. But it's really, so to speak, a cheerful picture or an image that is not so consistent with reality for the reindeer. Of course, the reindeer of reality, they are living a completely different life.

Reindeer, also known as caribou in North America, are hooved ruminants native to the Arctic and Subarctic. Reindeer possess four-chambered stomachs and are peaceful grazers who consume mostly lichen, moss, leaves and grass. Both females and males grow beautiful antlers and vary considerably in color and size according to their species. Large populations of wild reindeer can be found in parts of Norway, Finland, Siberia, Greenland, the state of Alaska in the USA and Canada.

Reindeer are social animals and live in herds of from 20 to thousands of animals. They are constantly on the move, travelling long distances to the north in the summer for fresh grazing, and returning to the warmer climates of the south for the winter. Some populations of North American reindeer hold the record for the farthest migration of any terrestrial mammal, traveling up to 5,000 kilometers a year, and covering a distance of 1,000,000 square kilometers During spring, smaller herds will come together to form larger groups of 50,000 to 500,000 animals for the yearly migration.

Reindeer are very suited to living in the far northern Swedish climate, so they do very well living in those conditions there. And they are herd animals, they live in packs. They are not so tame, but you can call them, so to speak, semi-domesticated here in Sweden. They still retain their wild behavior, however, and most of the year they live by themselves with other reindeer and have no particular contact with people.

Just before Christmas 2010, several chain supermarkets and groceries in Europe began selling reindeer meat as a “luxury product.”

One reason is that there is not a lot of reindeer meat in the market but there is a very small part that goes on the market. And the part that is released, is usually sold at very special stores.

In December 2010, as cheerful images of reindeer began to appear on big screens and in newspapers to herald the coming of Christmas, the World Society for the Protection of Animals Sweden released a shocking report exposing the barbarous practice of reindeer slaughter in Sweden and Finland. Visuals from the investigation show the extreme distress and suffering inflicted on reindeer herds by their tormentors.

Reindeer have long been cruelly exploited by humans as a means of transportation and for their meat, hides, antlers and milk. Each year hundreds of the helpless animals become terrified and panicked as they are heartlessly herded by their murderers who buzz over their heads in helicopters or chase them with snowmobiles and motorcycles. This is just the beginning of the reindeers’ journey to death. The disoriented animals who are unable to flee from the circle of no escape find themselves cornered and forced into corrals.

Utterly terrified, their ears are mutilated and left to bleed by the inhumane captors. The gentle beings are kicked and punched and then violently dragged and shoved into slaughterhouse-bound trucks, where they are so densely packed that their antlers can jab into nearby animals and they gore one another to death or easily get entangled, trapping their heads against the side of the truck, causing massive pain and serious injuries.

What I saw when I was on, as I said I was there when we were filming about half of our material, it was that I saw a reindeer stuck in the transport vehicle. Then you could see that these transporters, the sides of them, they had rails that ran the length like this. And there were many reindeer that I myself could stand and watch, that actually got stuck because they tried to come out or whatever they were trying to do, but anyway, so they got their antlers stuck between the rails.

To prevent the reindeers’ iconic antlers from getting in the way, some herders savagely chop them off with chainsaws before callously jamming the animals into the vehicles. The reindeer are then trucked up to 1,000 kilometers under horrific conditions to their destination of death. Upon arrival, the anguished reindeer are thrown into tightly packed quarters without food or water, and many suffer from malnutrition and illness due to an utter disregard for their welfare.

At the slaughterhouses, stabbing the reindeer with a knife is one of the heinous methods used to kill the animals. The stabbing is a clear violation of Swedish and Finnish laws stating that no undue distress, pain or suffering be caused to animals, who are also sentient beings with their own value.

What we reveal, or perhaps not reveal but which we could put a finger on in our report that I was very surprised about, because I was present when we filmed this, was that when they kill the reindeer for home use; that is, they kill them to take care of the meat themselves, it doesn’t go to the production line or the commercial market, it was that you were still using a knife, then you stuck a knife into the neck of the reindeer.

And that is something that I actually did not know that it still existed. I thought you had stopped using this a few years ago and I thought it had partly to do with that it is actually banned in Sweden. One must not treat reindeer in such a painful way. This stunning method is not allowed.

Vegetarians International Voice for Animals (Viva!) campaigns manager Justin Kerswell has stated: “We are very concerned about the exploitation of wild animals for meat. As well as being chased by snowmobiles, and perhaps even by helicopters, their misery doesn’t end there. Siberian reindeer may be being killed in a way that could be illegal in the UK, by having their spinal column severed with a sharp implement. This could take several attempts and may cause paralysis which may not immediately be fatal, and may potentially cause a long, lingering and painful death.”

Approximately 70% of the reindeer killed in Sweden each year are young calves, meaning that these innocent newborns die without ever seeing the snow, just to satisfy human greed and appetite. “The idea of Rudolph being slaughtered and sliced into steaks for a novelty Christmas dinner is simply revolting,” said a spokesperson for People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals. WSPA’s report about the massacring of reindeer reached far and wide via the Internet and other media and generated waves of support for the banning of reindeer slaughter.

This campaign that we have been running with this particular film, where we show how the reindeer are kept and how they are run in Sweden and in Finland, it has been a huge impact. And we have received many signatures from people throughout the world, who think that this issue is important and who want to see a concrete result. And what has happened so far, it is that here in Sweden we have received a good response from the authorities.

Our appreciation Roger Pettersson and the World Society for the Protection of Animals for standing up for the rights of reindeer in Sweden and Finland. To end the unconscionable suffering of our wonderful reindeer friends, please never purchase reindeer meat or any products that come from reindeer. Also adopting an organic vegan diet is the ultimate solution for anyone who desires to aid animals of any kind. The animals across the world will thank you beyond measure for taking this noble step.

For more details on the World Society for the Protection of Animals, please visit

This concludes this week’s edition of Stop Animal Cruelty. Coming up next is Enlightening Entertainment after Noteworthy News. May we always foster peace and goodwill with our animal friends