5 Quick Facts You Need to Know About the Fur on Your Coat

In my Ecofeminism class, we were assigned to read Margaret Atwood’s, The Year of the Flood. Essentially, it’s a book about a dystopian society that foreshadows a scary possible future for America (ie: a virus that wipes out a whole population, big brother take overs, etc). The book touches on many ecofeminist concepts; particularly in Chapter 27, Atwood briefly discusses the issue of fur in fashion. This intrigued me because I realized that I knew little to nothing about the fur trade and the animal cruelty that goes on within it. I decided to dig a little deeper and learn a little bit more about the fur that goes into Prada coats; I found some alarming facts that highlights the industry.

1.Your pet could be someone’s coat.
The most common animals killed for fur products: beavers, chinchillas, foxes, minks, rabbits, raccoons, seals, bears, cats and “man’s best friend” — dogs.

Fur used in USA imported from China

2. 1/3 of the fur sold comes from animals that are killed in steel jaw traps.
These steel traps keep the animals stuck for days, often leaving them to starve while dying a slow and painful death.

Steel trap

3. Animals are often slaughtered through anal electrocution, neck breaking, and gas chambers.
This is to prevent the possible ruining of the fur — oh God forbid the animals’ fur coat gets ruined!

Gas chamber

4. The Conibear trap is a common mechanism used to trap animals.
This trap essentially works by crushing the animal’s neck by applying 90 pounds of pressure per square inch; the animal then suffocates for 3–8 minutes before taking its last gasp of air.

Conibear Trap

5. More than 50 million animals are killed and mistreated a year.
Let me repeat that: 50 MILLION.

Coyote pelts

So next time you’re about to purchase a new pair of UGGS, or a fur lined Burberry coat — think twice.

Works Cited:

Atwood, Margaret. “Chapter 27.” The Year of the Flood: A Novel. New York: Nan A. Talese/Doubleday, 2009. 142. Print.

“Fur Production: Caged & Trapped Animals : The Humane Society of the United States.” RSS. N.p., n.d. Web. 24 May 2016. < http://furcommission.com/mink-farming-2/>

“Mink Farming.” Fur Commission USA. N.p., n.d. Web. 24 May 2016. < http://www.humanesociety.org/issues/fur_production/?credit=web_id86162647>

“Mink Industry Thrives despite Threats.” Capital Press. N.p., n.d. Web. 24 May 2016. < http://www.capitalpress.com/Nation_World/Nation/20150402/mink-industry-thrives-despite-threats>

“Nine Shocking Fur Facts.” PETA. N.p., n.d. Web. 24 May 2016. < http://www.peta.org/features/nine-shocking-fur-facts/>

Walrath, Toby. “The Fur Trade.” Outdoor Life 223.2 (2016): 70–77.Academic Search Premier. Web. 1 June 2016.

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