In September 2016, PETA went inside restaurants in Los Angeles that mutilate and serve live animals. At T Equals Fish, PETA's observers watched in horror as chefs held down an octopus—nicknamed "Pearl" by an observer—and cut off her sensitive limbs with a butcher knife. The severed limbs, which continued moving and reacting to stimuli, were served, squirming, to diners.
But the intelligent and sensitive octopus' suffering was far from over. Kitchen staff explained that she would be kept alive until another customer ordered the remaining limbs. Writhing helplessly and trying desperately to escape, Pearl was pushed to the side like a halved carrot or tomato. According to the chef, after every last arm and leg has been cut off, he will kill her by ripping open her mantle and tearing out the intestinal contents.
"[T]he octopus, which you've been chopping to pieces, is feeling pain every time you do it. It's just as painful as if it were a hog, a fish, or a rabbit, if you chopped a rabbit's leg off piece by piece. So it's a barbaric thing to do to the animal." —Cephalopod expert Dr. Jennifer Mather
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