Giraffe: A Halakhically Oriented Dissection

A necropsy of a giraffe was performed in suburban Tel Aviv in January 2002 by a team of rabbis and investigators from a variety of disciplines. We will discuss the implications of the findings as they relate to: the kashrut status of the giraffe, the laws pertaining to its ritual slaughter (shehitah), and the required examination for lesions that may render it unfit for consumption (tereifah). We will briefly review the anatomical characteristics that the halakhah requires for an animal to be kosher and see how they relate to our observations in the giraffe. The topic of the giraffe in Jewish sources as well as the question of its kashrut status have recently been dealt with at length in other venues. This article is limited to a brief review of that information, followed by presentation of new material and its possible halakhic implications for the kosher status and preparation of giraffe for Jewish consumption.

Publish DateSeptember 21, 2023
Last UpdatedSeptember 21, 2023