This article is quite disturbing, along with the link it came from. I've always known about puppy mills, but never actually looked further into it until now. I've read countless sites and stories about animal cruelity and have to say I am quite sickened by it, and will be very careful what I buy from now on (especially if it is from Asia)- but you never know, items from China could very well be sold elsewhere throughout the world by different consumers that we trust and we'd never truly know. With the recalls of Mattel toys having poisoned paint/lead/toxic this toxic that you just never know these days. THE truth about this life-like cuddly toy will shock animal lovers the length and breadth of the country. It was bought in Scotland and appears to be a cute kitten, curled up asleep safe and sound in its wicker bed. But this “kitten” is made from the fur of REAL dogs — farmed in horrendous circumstances in China and slaughtered for their pelts. Some are skinned before they are completely dead. The horrific discovery was made by Scots MEP Struan Stevenson (pictured left), who bought this particular toy from a souvenir shop in Shetland. It was labelled “Made in China”. Small print on the reverse of the label described it as an “animal by-product”. We found similar items in a number of shops in Glasgow. Souvenir shops Mr Stevenson says this and similar toys are in gift and souvenir shops around Britain and Europe. Ironically, they’re a firm favourite with pet lovers unaware of their true origins. Pelts are often mislabelled, says Mr Stevenson, so retailers will innocently stock them and customers have no idea what they’re really made of. Identical toys, bought in Holland, were tested for DNA by the Academic Medical Centre of Amsterdam. Results proved conclusively that they were made of dog hair. Mr Stevenson has been tirelessly campaigning for years to put an end to the European market for the remains of dogs and cats farmed in China. The USA has already banned the trade, following an 18-month undercover investigation conducted by the Humane Society International in Communist China. They documented the brutal lives and cruel deaths of more than two million dogs and cats in Asia each year — killed solely for their skins. Since then, Asian exporters have turned to Europe as a market for their products. As well as fur products, dog skins are also used as shoe leather or in some dog chew toys — which means domestic pets may be eating the skins of other dogs. Richard Swain, the Humane Society’s undercover investigator and a former Maryland police captain, said, “Make no mistake about it, this fur is being sold throughout Europe. In China I have seen warehouses the size of football fields piled to the ceiling with dog and cat fur waiting to be exported to the West.” Massive scale Struan Stevenson continued, “This is the evidence I have been waiting for. It confirms without a doubt that the appalling trade in cat and dog fur has penetrated the European market on a massive scale. “Since the USA banned all cat and dog products, Europe has become the new dumping ground. Italy has banned cat and dog imports and it is about time other EU member states followed suit. “I will be writing to Commissioner David Byrne demanding he apply an EU-wide ban on these products. I will be sending him the latest scientific evidence as well as a copy of The Sunday Post to convince him to act now.” read more on the sickening crisis of cat & dog fur trade: Boycott China for Animal Cruelty PLEASE PUT GIVE THIS INFORMATION TO AS MANY FORUMS AND COMMUNITIES AS YOU CAN! Add this Youtube link to the post also, I forgot to put it there. I just found out that items marked as fake fur may be not what it seems. Even items that are priced over $150 could be something else other than what the retailer is advertising! Some fur from Asia were being distributed in Germany and France and made into furry collars, mixed into scarves etc... many patterns from countries are sent to asia and the item is made there- they (the factories) however do not need to tell you what it is made from. If they do, they need not explain HOW the animals were killed or conditions they kept them in. Please be very careful with purchases. This also goes for PET STORES where most of their cute and cuddly little animals come from puppy mills! YouTube - Broadcast Yourself. We must educate ourselves further in this matter. Should you have an article of clothing or an item you are very suspicious of, I'd recommend just throwing the thing in the garbage. Do not even bother GIVING it away to charity! Unless you are quite positive the hair or item is FAKE (made of plastics) then it should be ok. I saw one of those furry animal things (the sleeping cat in basket toy) at the mall in the General Store; a shop full of nic nacs an' things...well they had a few of those toys in there and they were made in China. I asked the lady who works there if it disturbs her that that the product could possibly be made of cat or dog hairs and she grinned, shrugged her shoulders and replied: "It does not bother me. It all depends on what interests the customers have. Some do not care what it is made out of."