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Trade Me domestic cat skin auction could lead to charges

Trade Me domestic cat skin auction could lead to charges


The photo of the cat skin that accompanied the auction

The recent auction of a domestic cat skin on Trade Me is deeply offensive and could lead to charges under the Animal Welfare Act, according to the Royal New Zealand SPCA.

The auction has now closed but can still be viewed online here: http://www.trademe.co.nz/Browse/Listing.aspx?id=595430018

“This auction is extremely disturbing, not only because it features the sale of a domestic cat skin, but also because of the large number of anti-cat comments it has attracted,” says Royal New Zealand SPCA National President Bob Kerridge.

“Let’s be clear about this: in New Zealand we have three groups of cats – companion cats, stray cats, and feral cats – but they all belong to the same species. The only difference between them is the amount of contact they have with humans – companion and stray cats at one end of the spectrum and feral cats at the other.

“The question is: how can you tell whether a skin for sale on Trade Me came from a feral cat, a cat that was simply a stray, or someone’s beloved companion cat? The answer is: you can’t.

“That leads to a further question: how was the cat killed? Humanely or in a manner that caused pain or suffering?

“According to his profile, the Trade Me seller in this auction lives in Manukau City, an area where you will not find feral or ‘wild’ cats. What’s more likely is that this animal was a stray and therefore protected under the Animal Welfare Act. So if this cat was killed in an inhumane way, charges could be laid.

“We will investigate this case to determine whether there has been a breach of the Animal Welfare Act. If any members of public have any information that might help our investigation, I would encourage them to come forward.

“I have also raised the issue with Trade Me, as I have done in the past with the sale of cat skins. Unfortunately Trade Me rules currently do not discriminate between different kinds of animal skins offered for sale on the website.”

ends

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