Robyn Lawley reveals why she’s voicing a PETA cartoon

EXCLUSIVE: The Australian model spoke to Yahoo News Australia from New York City about animal welfare, voicing a crocodile called Sidney, and luxury handbags. Video: Michael Dahlstrom

Video transcript

- Aussie model Robyn Lawley has lent her voice to a horrific new campaign from animal rights group PETA.

ROBYN LAWLEY: One day, some humans cornered me and tied ropes tightly around my mouth. They shocked me with an electric prod.

- Aimed at shedding light on cruelty associated with the luxury handbag industry. We spoke to her in New York.

ROBYN LAWLEY: I don't think crocodiles should be kept in such confined conditions. They're kept in, like, little boxes until they're 36 months old. And then they're killed in a pretty inhumane way.

The human cut into my friend's neck and rammed a rod up into her head. She was alive the entire time.

They're kept amongst each other. So they're on top of each other in these pits, so it's really grotesque. They get really sick and injured, and there's no vets for them. They're just treated as if they're a bag already.

I could see and feel everything. But I couldn't help her because the electric shock had paralyzed me. As the humans approached me, I heard one of them say that it would take three or more of us crocodiles to make just one expensive bag.

It's just trying to get to reach the viewers of what the animal truly does go through. Because I think we kind of just turned a blind eye and they've really got the consumer fooled. This cognitive dissonance of they want to sell you this item and they sell it to you in such a way that you feel like it's such a fabulous purchase.

It's so beautiful. It's such an amazing item and you want it so bad. You want this bag.

You have to have this bag and yet this animal is in a pit getting treated like shit, you know. It's in the worst conditions that you could possibly imagine. You would never want to live in those kinds of conditions.

Knowledge is power. And I think the more you know, the better you buy. It's been so long that we've just sold this idea for so long.

And I'm no better. I have a lot of handbags. I was really into handbags. I collected a lot.

And you obsess over the leather. You're like lambskin. And then when you turn the other way, you realize that lambskin, for example, is just a baby animal that you're just caressing.

So it's like this switch. So I'm just trying to get people to realize and just aware that this is a crocodile. This is one of the most precious species that we have and that we're just slaughtering inhumanely as we're keeping them in the most atrocious conditions that we can.

Let us be free and keep our skin for everyone's sake. Never buy shoes, belts, bags, or any other accessories made from the skins of wild animals.

I believe that the fashion world can change. I've been a curvy model for so long and it's now changed. The runway is now much more diverse. We have so many more ethnicities, so many more sizes, and I was championing that for so long.

I think the fashion world can go more ethical. And I think, you know-- like, I'm saying mushroom leather, you can grow this. You don't have to torture an animal. You can grow it.

And you can grow it in, like, three months. So I think it's stupid of the fashion world to keep torturing these animals when you can grow it. So I don't see why we're doing it anymore.