EU ban on cat and dog fur imports and exports welcomed
Humane Society International (HSI) welcomes a European Union ban on the import, export and trade of cat and dog fur that became effective on the 1st of January.
The ban, spurred by international outrage about images of dogs and cats being callously killed for their fur, was passed by a unanimous vote of the European Parliament on June 19, 2007. It follows a similar ban enacted in Australia in 2004.
"Every year, the fur of millions of cats and dogs in China and other parts of Asia is made into garments and exported for sale in other countries," said Nicola Beynon, Senior Program Manager of Humane Society International Australia. "The European ban will shut down another major market for the products from this gruesome and cruel practice."
In the late 1990s, Humane Society International conducted an 18- month investigation into China's fur industry. Evidence was obtained that the fur of dogs and cats were used to make garments that were exported to foreign markets.
Investigators captured disturbing images that included a German Shepherd dog being skinned alive in public view and cats being slowly strangled to death in front of their terrified cage mates.
HSI investigators found garments made with dog or cat fur on sale in Australia, Europe and the United States; these were often falsely labeled (as other animals or even as "fake fur") likely because consumers would refuse to purchase the fur of companion animals.
The import, export and sale of dog and cat fur was banned in the United States in 2000 and Australia followed with its own ban in 2004, both bans as a result of the HSI investigations.
In China, a country which has no animal welfare laws, dogs, cats, raccoon dogs and other animals are openly and legally slaughtered often in cruel ways. China is the largest exporter of fur in the world. By closing foreign markets for dog and cat fur, Chinese fur businesses will have fewer places to market their products.
More information is available at: www.hsus.org/hsi/confronting_cruelty/fur/dog_and_cat_fur/