England: Friend or Foe ? – Fur or Faux Fur.

Cats tread softly and gently. They can steal up on you without a sound. Before you know it, your feline friend is on your lap – wonderful. However, you may well not have noticed that sometimes it’s their fur which could be keeping your head or neck warm as hat, collar or hood trimmings, creeping up on the unwary consumer without the slightest hint of a meow. It is much less friendly.

Now, anything containing real cat or dog fur is already banned in the EU, or maybe it is better to say ‘officially it should be’. If you say ‘it is’ there will always be proof somewhere that ‘it is not’; so I tend to shy away from such statements usually. But regardless, products with fur from farmed mink, foxes, chinchillas and raccoon dogs are still ON the market. These additions are not necessarily advertised as such. Instead, they can be used by manufacturers to give low-cost garments a ‘high-end’ feel.

Please remember – It takes up to 40 dumb animals to die in making of a fur coat; but only one even dumber one to wear it for the sake of vanity.

Faux fur can be faking it

As activists and campaigners, you no doubt wouldn’t choose anything made of animal fur; it belongs on their back, not yours. But, while the price tag of a coat clearly indicates whether it’s a mink or a fink, it may well not alert you that the decoration on the bobble hat or hooded coat you’re looking at is not faux fur, but real fur.

This is why Fur Free Europe is not just seeking a ban on keeping and killing animals on fur farms, but also pushing for legislation to make it illegal for any farmed fur to be sold throughout the EU. That way, whenever a product takes your fancy, you’ll be sure it won’t contain anything that looked a lot fancier and in the right place – on its original owner. 

You will also be sure that you won’t be inadvertently supporting the abjectly cruel practice of forcing inherently wild species to spend their lives in cramped battery cages, unable to enjoy any natural behaviours. 

But there are also other issues which could arise from this .  If Europe does the bans, then for sure, we can see the Chinese attempting to flood the euro market with fur products which are produced using real fur and which have been produced under the most disgusting actions.  The importation of real fur from outside the EU, to be sold as faux within the EU is one issue that really has to be observed and monitored very closely.  Years ago I personally became involved with the EU when Russian seal pup fur was illegally making its way into the EU – dressed up and coloured to make the consumer think that it may not be ‘real fur’ that they were purchasing; but it was; fur of baby seals slaughtered in Russia.  (But the good news is after a lot of work, we stopped the Russian seal pup slaughter  – so, job done).

A seal pup ‘farm’ in Russia – fortunately, no longer used. (WAV)

A netted Russian seal pup destined for the farms – no longer – archive photo.
Bringing the Russian seal issue to Downing St, London. Mark (WAV) dressed as Sealer – on left.

Think what we say about China fur cruelty is over the top ? – then watch this

Click on ‘Watch on You Tube’ for both below.

Now want more ?

Herding the EU cats

Despite widespread ethical concerns – a sensible majority of people in every EU country consider breeding animals for fur unacceptable, let alone the associated public health risks, many Member States still allow fur farming to continue. This time last year, twelve Member States called on the European Commission “to undertake appropriate action leading to the end of fur farming in Europe”. There has been some progress, but far more is needed.  You could say a global ban on fur production is needed; this probably will not happen (when we talk China), but real fur product imports from China for example into the EU under the guise of fake fur can be tested, controlled, and closely monitored before they even get here.  This is where ‘eurolegislators’ need to come out of their cages, AND ACT.  The Chinese need to be held to account for their abuses in the fur trade.

The European Citizens’ Initiative Fur Free Europe is working hard to obtain the backing of a million EU citizens. If this goal is reached, the European Commission will be obliged to respond and take action.

If you too want to “Leave Fur Behind” and see a ban on fur farms and farmed fur products, then add your signature to the campaign. 

Let’s make sure there is only ever friendly faux fur on that hat or hood. No doubt the cat will purr too.

Regards Mark

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