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Animal House: Fur - the bloody truth

Foxes are one of the animals who often experience fear and pain while caught in a trap.
Foxes are one of the animals who often experience fear and pain while caught in a trap.

Last month a PEI woman went through one of the most horrifying experiences of her life; she watched her little dog die while she was struggling to free him from a trap.

Lynda Fortin was walking her three dogs in a grassy area near her home when Cooper, a 16-pound poodle-yorkie mix, let out a yip. A Conibear trap had snapped shut around his body. While she tried to open the jaws of the trap with all her strength, screamed for help and begged God to help her save her dog he died with the metal trap around him.

Lynda Fortin was walking her three dogs in a grassy area near her home when Cooper, a 16-pound poodle-yorkie mix, let out a yip. A Conibear trap had snapped shut around his body. While she tried to open the jaws of the trap with all her strength, screamed for help and begged God to help her save her dog he died with the metal trap around him.

The government said the trap was set legally on public land for trapping beaver.

The Conibear trap is difficult to release animals from. It was designed in 1957 when Frank Conibear tried to create something that would kill animals instantly. It has two rectangular frames that slam shut when the trigger is activated. The only way it kills instantly is if an animal who is just the right size is caught at just the right angle. Otherwise, the animals go through incredible pain and, depending on what area is being gripped, they may suffer for hours.

Cooper is only one of many animals who have experienced a frightening and painful death in a trap. The fur industry wants people to believe trapping is humane but being caught in a piece of metal that causes you pain and results in panicked struggles is not humane. Some animals have chewed off a foot to escape leg–hold traps, which have been banned in many countries. Some trapped animals die from hypothermia or are attacked by another animal. If they’re still alive when the trapper returns they will probably be clubbed to death or shot.

Snares also cause enormous pain. They tighten as an animal struggles to get free, often resulting in strangulation.

With a wide variety of materials available to make cruelty-free clothing there is no need to wear fur. When you look at that parka with the fur-trimmed hood (including Canada Goose) remember an animal who wanted to live, and felt pain and fear, died for that trim. The clothing only appears clean because the blood of those who suffered has been removed, and when you buy fur you are the one supporting cruelty.

 

 

Lynn Curwin is an avid animal lover. She resides in Bible Hill.

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