02/12/08 Request for a Legal Prohibition of Importing Dog and Cat Fur

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Ministry of Agriculture,
Fishery, and Rural Development
Veterinary Department
c/o Mate Brstilo
Miramarska 24
10000 Zagreb

February 12, 2008

Subject: Request for a legal prohibition of importing dog and cat fur

Dear Mr. Brstilo,

We are writing to you in order to demand a legal prohibition against importing dog and cat fur, on the basis that the Chinese fur industry inflicts terrible cruelty against these animals which contradicts the principles on which Animal Protection Act is founded. It is also important to emphasize that the European Union has already issued such a ban.

For the purpose of global trade, China kills more than 2 million dogs and cats each year. Their fur is sold mostly as decorative details on coats, gloves, purses, toys, and cheap jewelry. Animals bred for fur live in miserable conditions which include confinement to dirty and overcrowded wire cages on farms that are notorious for diseases, injuries, and infliction of psychological stress upon the animals.

A secret investigation performed by Swiss Animal Protection/EAST International has revealed a terrifying slaughter routines perpetuated in the Chinese fur market which involve employees striking or killing the animals with clubs, stomping on their heads and smashing their bodies against the ground. These abuses often only harm the animals and do not successfuly kill or even sedate them such that they remain conscious and sentient as they have their skin cut into and pulled from their bodies. The skinned animals are thrown onto heaps of corpses, where they continue breathing for five to ten minutes after the fur was torn from their bodies.

Since Australia, Belgium, Denmark, France, Italy, Greece and the entire European Union have prohibited the import of Chinese fur, it can only be expected that Croatia will follow their example. Moreover, Croatia should issue the ban without any transition period in order to prove its consistency in improving its laws and regulations related to animal welfare. After the prohibition of breeding animals for fur and importing seal fur and products, banning Chinese fur imports would certainly be another step in the right direction for Croatia and its citizens.

We would appreciate if you could inform us about your action in this respect and kindly remind you that we have still not received any answer regarding our demand for introducing urgent modifications to the Regulation on the Microchipping of Dogs, which received support from numerous organizations and citizens, as well as from a dozen town administrations.

With best regards,

Luka Oman


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