Here are the facts:
- More than 100 million animals are reported killed by hunters each year. That number does not include the millions of animals for which kill figures are not maintained by state wildlife agencies.
- The vast majority of species that are hunted -- waterfowl, upland birds, mourning doves, squirrels, raccoons, rabbits, crows, coyotes, etc. -- provide minimal sustenance and do not require population control.
- Each year, more than 40 million animals are killed for their fur: mink, fox, bobcat, beavers, raccoon, lynx, chinchilla, coyote, fisher, marten, muskrat, opossum, otter, skunk, weasel -— the list goes on and on. Each piece of fur trim represents an animal who suffered and died; a full coat represents many animals. There is no reason to kill animals for fashion, and many reasons not to.
- Animals suffer for days in steel-jawed leg-hold traps before being killed by one of a variety of methods: standing on their chests to crush their lungs, shooting them, clubbing them, stabbing them, or by other equally cruel methods.
- Thousands of animals, referred to by the fur industry as “trash animals,” are caught in traps every year, including birds, reptiles, squirrels, dogs, cats and sometimes even children.
- Ranch-raised fur-bearing animals live their entire lives in tiny wire cages where only minimal survival needs are met. Animals often become insane from lack of mental stimulation and sometimes mutilate themselves by chewing at their own paws and tails.
- Animals on fur ranches are killed by a variety of methods, including anal electrocution. A metal rod is inserted into the anus and electrified as the animal is forcibly held down.
- Cat, dog, and rabbit fur is commonly used as trim on many garments.
- It takes the following number of animals to make one 40-inch coat: 16 coyote, 18 lynx, 60 mink, 45 opossum, 20 otter, 42 red fox, 40 raccoon, 50 sable, 8 seal, 50 muskrat and 15 beaver. This doesn't count the number of trash animals also killed in the process.
- Killing methods include: Drowned in leg-hold, body-crushing trap, clubbed, suffocated, shot after being caught in leg-hold trap, hunted and shot, electrocuted (genital or ear-to-foot), neck broken, poisoned, strangled by snare, poisoned (by injection), or gassed.
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"There will be no justice as long as man will stand with a knife or with a gun and destroy those who are weaker than he is."
Isaac Bashevis Singer
"Killing animals for sport, for pleasure, for adventures, and for hides and furs is a phenomenon which is at once disgusting and distressing. There is no justification in indulging in such acts of brutality."
His Holiness the XIV Dalai Lama of Tibet
"Behind every beautiful fur, there is a story. It is a bloody, barbaric story."
Mary Tyler Moore
"Wild animals never kill for sport. Man is the only one to whom the torture and death of his fellow creatures is amusing in itself."
"When a man wants to murder a tiger he calls it sport; when the tiger wants to murder him he calls it ferocity."
George Bernard Shaw
What You Can Do
- Support legislation banning canned hunts on a federal, state, and local levels. Tell your federal senators and representatives to support legislation prohibiting canned hunting. If your county or state has no law against canned hunting, push for such a bill.
- Ask your local zoo about its policy on surplus animals and their disposition. Ask zoo officials to make a commitment to provide any animal born in their facility with responsible, lifelong care.
- Do not support the trade of wild animals in any form—as pets, products, or entertainment.
- Oppose the establishment of hunts or game ranches in your community. Apply local anti-cruelty laws to existing hunt situations.
- Speak out about canned hunts. Write letters to your local newspaper about canned hunts or canned hunt legislation affecting your community.
- Do not buy any fur coats or fur-trimmed garments. Encourage your friends and family to do the same.
- Complain to store managers where fur is sold -- boycott those stores until they change their fur policy.
- Speak up when a fur is worn in public. Politely, but firmly, ask the wearer if they are aware of the unseen cruelty of fur.
Other Useful Resources
The Humane Society of the U.S.
Coalition to Abolish Fur Trade
Friends of Animals
The Fund for Animals
Fur is Cruel