In 2022, we moved even closer to a fur-free future

By on December 5, 2022 with 0 Comments

One of my fondest memories from this year was celebrating the monumental progress we made toward ending the fur trade at our To the Rescue! gala in New York. The event showcased the next generation of sustainable, animal-friendly materials—like leather made from mushrooms and fur made from plants—that make the notion of confining animals to slaughter them for their fur even more absurd and frivolous than it already is. These innovations signal a paradigm shift toward a future where tens of millions of foxes, mink, rabbits, chinchillas and raccoon dogs will no longer die for fur fashion, and animal fur as we know it will never again return to catwalks and stores.

Our fight for a fur-free future has been vigorous, taking place on both the corporate and legislative fronts. We’ve seen firsthand how corporate victories can pave the way for stronger laws that eliminate what little demand is left for cruel products such as fur: In January, our case to end the fur trade became even stronger when luxury Italian brands Dolce & Gabbana and Moncler announced that they were going fur-free, opting for alternatives that are better for animals and the planet.

Also in 2022, we saw fur-free announcements by Italian companies Parajumpers and Zegna Group, which owns fashion brands Zegna and Thom Browne; Danish brand Saks Potts; Copenhagen Fashion Week; luxury online retailer Moda Operandi; and Paris fashion trade shows Première Classe and Who’s Next. In October, UK company Frasers Group, owner of House of Fraser department stores, as well as luxury retail chain Flannels and retail brands including Sports Direct, pledged to no longer purchase fur.

These corporate victories continue to pile up, and we’re now at the point where the majority of fashion companies have shunned fur completely.

With momentum on our side, advocates are working with city councils across the U.S. to prohibit the sale of new fur products. This year, two towns in Massachusetts—Cambridge and Plymouth—became the latest to ban fur sales, bringing the total to 12. Washington, D.C., also introduced a bill that would ban fur sales in the nation’s capital, and the city council will hold its first hearing on it this month.

Internationally, the move away from fur has taken center stage in Europe, with Latvia, Malta and Ireland banning fur farming in 2022. With nearly 20 countries throughout Europe already taking a stand against fur farming, Humane Society International, together with more than 70 organizations, has launched the “Fur-Free Europe” European Citizens’ Initiative to demand a European Union ban on fur farming and import of fur products. The petition must receive 1 million validated signatures by May 2023 for the European Commission to issue a formal response. The EU is one of the largest fur producers in the world; more than 18 million animals were born just to die for their fur in 2020 alone. The “Fur-Free Europe” European Citizens’ Initiative is crucial for our campaign to end the fur trade globally, as it would cripple the fur industry like never before.

Awareness of the fur trade’s cruelty continues to climb, even as demand for fur products plummets, but we won’t rest until the fur trade has ended for good. Until that happens, we will continue to find ways to shine a light on the cruelty behind this industry. This is where our investigations come in: This year, we revealed the intense suffering on chinchilla fur farms in Romania and exposed the cruelty of trapping in the U.S. As difficult as the findings of these investigations are to witness, they are essential to showing the public, corporations and legislators the reality behind this trade.

In 2022, HSI’s investigation of chinchilla fur farms in Romania exposed how female chinchillas were subjected to a perpetual cycle of breeding, pregnancy and birth and are fitted with neck braces to stop them from escaping their cages during mating. HSI

Together, we can create a world where fur farms and traps are a thing of the past, but we can’t do it without you. Here are some ways you can help:

  • If you’re a citizen of the EU, please sign the European Citizens’ Initiative, and make sure to share it with all your friends and family who live there as well.
  • If you live in the U.S., consider reaching out to your local elected representatives to see if they’d support an ordinance prohibiting the sale of new fur products. Our toolkit is a step-by-step on how to do it.
  • Everyone can continue to support fur-free fashion by letting companies that still sell fur know that you won’t support them until they go fur-free.
  • Finally, you can be part of the change by donating to our work to protect all animals.

Follow Kitty Block on Twitter @HSUSKittyBlock.

How you can help your local animal shelter or rescue this holiday season

By on December 1, 2022 with 1 Comment
How you can help your local animal shelter or rescue this holiday season

Earlier this year, we completed the largest transport of dogs we’ve ever undertaken. (You probably remember the Beaglemania that ensued after a court approved the transfer of 3,776 beagles from a breeding facility that supplied dogs to animal testing laboratories.) It took us 58 days, . . . 

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Building a brighter future for Bolivia’s dogs and cats

By on November 29, 2022 with 2 Comments
Building a brighter future for Bolivia’s dogs and cats

Dr. Katherine Polak, the vice president of Companion Animals and Engagement for Humane Society International, recently returned from HSI’s dedicated veterinary training center in La Paz, Bolivia, the only such center in the country. In this guest blog, Dr. Polak gives us an inside look . . . 

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Leopards, sharks and glass frogs win new protections, while hippos face tragic losses

By on November 28, 2022 with 4 Comments
Leopards, sharks and glass frogs win new protections, while hippos face tragic losses

A couple of weeks ago, I told you about our work at the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora—known as CITES. This conference is so important because it shapes how wild animals in . . . 

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Giving thanks with Helen the turkey

By on November 23, 2022 with 1 Comment
Giving thanks with Helen the turkey

This year for Thanksgiving, I’m in Texas at our expansive animal sanctuary, Black Beauty Ranch. Founded in 1979, Black Beauty Ranch is home to nearly 650 rescued animals. Some came from slaughterhouses or research laboratories or cases of extreme neglect. Others came from roadside zoos or were . . . 

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Breaking: 18 dogs saved as Viet Nam slaughterhouse shuts down

By on November 22, 2022 with 1 Comment
Breaking: 18 dogs saved as Viet Nam slaughterhouse shuts down

Something extraordinary happened just outside a dog slaughterhouse and dog meat restaurant in Viet Nam where thousands of dogs and cats had been killed over the past five years: The owner of the facility approached the sign that advertised dog meat and started to tear . . . 

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Endangered Species Act proposal would be a win for elephants

By on November 18, 2022 with 5 Comments
Endangered Species Act proposal would be a win for elephants

There’s a golden opportunity to help protect African elephants now that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has proposed a new Endangered Species Act rule. If finalized, the new rule would better regulate imports of African elephants and their parts, like hunting trophies, to the . . . 

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Emaciated puppies, a dead kitten and other horrific violations uncovered at Petland stores

By on November 17, 2022 with 6 Comments
Emaciated puppies, a dead kitten and other horrific violations uncovered at Petland stores

As the holiday season approaches, now is an important time to remind your friends and family not to support pet stores that sell puppies and kittens. Not only can this spare them a lot of heartache, but it can also help change a system that . . . 

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Breaking: Brutal trophy hunt returns in shocking ‘emergency’ reversal of policy

By on November 16, 2022 with 11 Comments
Breaking: Brutal trophy hunt returns in shocking ‘emergency’ reversal of policy

Update 12/1/22: The start of the New Jersey bear hunt has been put on indefinite hold, as we, along with the Animal Protection League of New Jersey and Friends of Animals, challenge the decision to hold the hunt in court. In a stunningly shortsighted and . . . 

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As the House votes to stop soring of horses, it’s PAST time

By on November 14, 2022 with 3 Comments
As the House votes to stop soring of horses, it’s PAST time

On the House floor Monday night, the House of Representatives voted 304 to 111 to pass the Prevent All Soring Tactics (PAST) Act into law. With just a few weeks remaining in the 117th Congress, getting a vote in the Senate will take some effort. . . . 

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At CITES in Panama, we’re pushing for greater wildlife protection worldwide

By on November 11, 2022 with 1 Comment
At CITES in Panama, we’re pushing for greater wildlife protection worldwide

What kind of world would this be if there were no regulation of the international trade in wildlife and wildlife parts? In a world in which commercial interests alone determined the fate of tigers, elephants and hundreds of other species threatened by trade, would these . . . 

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Breaking: 34 dogs saved from South Korea’s dog meat industry arrive in US to seek homes

By on November 9, 2022 with 3 Comments
Breaking: 34 dogs saved from South Korea’s dog meat industry arrive in US to seek homes

The fortunate 34 dogs who arrived in the United States earlier this month have come quite a long way since our animal rescue responders first encountered them as victims of the dog meat industry in South Korea. Back in July, I told you about 21 . . . 

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