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Cat Defender

Exposing the Lies and Crimes of Bird Advocates, Wildlife Biologists, the United States Fish and Wildlife Service, PETA, the Humane Society of the United States, Exterminators, Vivisectors, the Scientific Community, Fur Traffickers, Cloners, Breeders, Designer Pet Purveyors, Hoarders, Motorists, the United States Military, and Other Ailurophobes

Monday, February 05, 2007

Fur Traffickers and Vivisectors Suspected in the Disappearance of Berlin's Katzen

"Viele Leute wissen nicht, dass sie ihre eigene Katze am Mantel tragen konnten."
-- Marcel Gaeding, Berliner Tierschutzverein

Cats are disappearing by the thousands from the streets of Berlin and it is suspected that they are being stolen by criminal syndicates that either slaughter them for their fur or sell them to vivisectors.

According to Marcel Gaeding of the Berliner Tierschutzverein, around twenty-five-hundred of the city's estimated three-hundred-thousand felines vanish each year and of that number at least five-hundred are unexplained disappearances. Berliners therefore have been advised to lock up their cats.

Cat pelts are used in the manufacture of a wide variety of wearing apparel and accessories including gloves, hats, coats, trousers, shoes, blankets, kidney warmers, pom-poms, and toys. "Viele Leute wissen nich, dass sie ihre eigene Katze am Mantel tragen konnten," Gaeding said after pointing out that items made of cat and dog fur are often marketed as either rabbit or synthetic fur. (See Deutscher Depeschendienst and www.pr-inside.com of Wien, January 24, 2007, "Berlins Katzen leben offenbar gefahrlich.")

Berliner Gabriele Groh is quoted in the January 24th edition of Der Spiegel as saying that three cats including her own Kater Mecki, who had been with her for eight years, have disappeared from her housing estate this month. "That can't be a coincidence," she said. (See "Mystery of the Missing Cats.")

Others are not so sure, however. "We've had countless calls from people asking about this but we think it's highly unlikely," Steffen Seckler of the Deutschen Tierschutzbund in Bonn told Der Spiegel.

"... I can't imagine cat-catching being an economically feasible way to supply the clothing industry when thousands of animals are bred and processed in China and turned into jackets, trousers, shoes, and stuffed toys, which is the height of perversion," he added. He also dismissed the notion that research laboratories might be stealing cats because they usually buy from breeders in order to ensure the uniformity in their diabolical experiments.

In addition to Berlin, cats have also been disappearing from the streets of Munich although a 2005 police investigation failed to uncover any evidence of organized animal theft. While it is well established that China breeds and slaughters more than two million cats and dogs each year for their fur (See photos above and below) and that vivisectors get a lion's share of their cats from licensed breeders, that is far from being the whole story.

For instance, Heather Mills (See photo above of her and Struan Stevenson with garments made from cat and dog fur) presented evidence to the EU's Commission in December 2005 that up to three-thousand cats had been nabbed off the streets of the Czech Republic and skinned alive for their fur. (See Cat Defender post of December 15, 2005 entitled "Heather Mills Asks EU to Ban Sale of Cat and Dog Fur; Paul McCartney Calls for Boycott of Chinese Goods and Olympics.")

Also, one Belgian fur trader confessed to the Humane Society International last year that cats and dogs are indeed being rounded up off the streets of Brussels and Ghent and slaughtered for their fur. (See Expatica, June 21, 2006, "Exposing the Trade in Cat and Dog Fur.")

Patricia Eugene, a sixty-nine-year-old retired pharmacist from Brussels suspects that her cat, Snowy, was stolen and killed by fur traders. "Of course, I do not know for sure what happened to him, but there seems to be increasing evidence that cats are being stolen and slaughtered for their fur," she told Expatica. "Not only that, but it may be going on right under our noses."

Alain van Cutsem, a fifty-four-year-old civil servant from Ghent, has also lost his family cat. "I can't prove it, but I firmly believe our pet was kidnapped to supply this heartless trade. It is cruel and heartbreaking, particularly for animal lovers (sic) like me."

More disturbingly is the fact that although Belgium in 2004 outlawed the importation of articles made from cat and dog fur, it nonetheless permits several cat and dog fur farms to operate openly within its borders. Also, apparel made from cat and dog fur can be purchased over the Internet as English member of the European Parliament Struan Stevenson (See photo above with Heather Mills) found out when he was able to purchase a rheumatic bandage online.

Vivisectors likewise are certainly not above resorting to nefarious means in order to obtain cats. For instance, while he as in medical school at Harvard former Republican Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist adopted a cat from a shelter under the pretext of giving it a good home only to take it back to his laboratory and experiment on it. Vivisectors and those involved in the fur trade are not only animal killers, but they are also constantly on the lookout to save a buck.

This case highlights the deplorable lack of protections for cats and dogs in Deutschland. Whereas France, Italy, Greece, Denmark, and even Belgium at least ban the importation of cat and dog fur, Deutschland imports between two-hundred-fifty-thousand and half a million feline pelts from China and South Korea each year.

Thankfully, this is about to change. Late last month, the twenty-seven member states who make up the EU's Commission unanimously approved a resolution to ban the sale, importation, and production of cat and dog fur. The ban, however, still must be approved by the European Parliament and that is not expected to occur before late June. (See Corus Radio of Montreal, January 29, 2007, "L'Union europeenne interdit la fourrure de chiens ou de chats.")

In marked contrast to its usual posture of being a stick-in-the-mud whenever any progressive legislation is proposed, the United States banned the importation of apparel manufactured out of feline and canine hides in 2004. Not about to be deprived of their blood money, the Chinese and Koreans merely began shipping more pelts to Europe.

The Chinese, Koreans, Belgians, and Czechs are not the only traffickers in cat hides. On Australia's Kangaroo Island cats are shot and their furs made into beer and soda can holders, hats, slippers, and golf club covers.

It is also perfectly legal in Deutschland for hunters to shoot and kill both domestic and feral cats who venture off their owners' property. In the western state of North Rhine-Westphalia hunters admit to having gunned down 17,895 innocent cats during the 2002-2003 hunting season. Nationwide, it is estimated that hunters slaughter millions of cats each year.

Worst still, Deutschland's sickening disregard for cats is not limited to hunting them for sport and wearing items made from their fur around their necks, but Der Spiegel reported in the article cited supra that some carnival associations in the southern part of the country even parade around draped in the corpses of dead cats.

These barbaric practices are in stark contrast with statistics that show that approximately one out of every four Germans owns a pet. Moreover, last year they spent close to three billion euros feeding and caring for twenty-three-million pets, including 7.6 million cats and 5.3 million dogs. (See Stern, January 16, 2007, "Drei Milliarden fur Hund, Katze und Maus.")

The fact that cats and dogs are being abused in such diabolical fashion is clearly the fault of animal rights groups. If these groups were anything other than total frauds they would have demanded a long time ago that hunting cats be outlawed and that the importation of articles made from cat and dog fur be proscribed. For instance, when Wisconsin wanted to establish a hunting season for feral cats in 2005 it was forced to back down because of nationwide opposition from cat lovers.

In addition to the heartless barbarism associated with the gunning down of cats, those killed for their fur die horrible deaths. Zum Beispiel, those stolen off the streets of the Czech Republic are skinned alive. In China, undercover investigators from PETA have filmed cats being boiled alive in hot water and then skinned by fleecing machines similar to clothes dryers.

There are also videos on YouTube that show cats stuffed into overcrowded crates being tossed around like rubber balls by Chinese fur farmers. From the time that they are captured until they die the lives of cats and dogs trafficked in the fur trade are nothing but pure hell.

Photos: Fur Kills (caged cats, dead cats, and murdered dog) and Expatica (Mills and Stevenson).