Recycle Old Furs Into Bedding for Injured Animals

Recycle Old Furs Into Bedding for Injured Animals

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coats-for-cubsIs your grandmother’s mink stored away in the attic? Maybe not, but with so many people relegating fur coats — theirs, or a loved one’s — to the back of the closet, the Humane Society hopes to round up piles of pelts in their renewed Coats for Cubs recycling program.

Wildlife rehabilitators know that injured baby possums and orphaned raccoons naturally respond when their boxes are lined with remnants of fur clothing.

The Humane Society along with second-hand retailer Buffalo Exchange will host another fur recycling initiative, which provides bedding and comfort to orphaned and injured wildlife and also offers the added benefit of a tax credit for those who donate. (Watch the video below.)

All of the furs received are sent to wildlife rehabilitators, who use the furs to warm and comfort orphaned and injured wildlife. More than 200 rehabilitators from across the United States and Canada now participate in the program.

The furs are cut into an appropriate size for the animal, whether it be a bobcat, fox, raccoon, squirrel, or rabbit, and placed inside the animal’s enclosure. The furry blanket becomes a surrogate mother to orphaned animals, reducing stress and giving comfort.

One rehabilitator related a story about a restless orphaned river otter who chirped constantly. Once she was given a fur blanket, she settled right down. Turning the sleeve of a fur coat inside out, a rehabilitator can also create a warm nest for a burrowing animal such as an opossum. Some animals adopt a piece of fur as a playmate, jumping on it and wrestling with it.

Since 2006, Buffalo Exchange has collected a total of 5,256 used furs on behalf of Coats for Cubs.

From Saturday, November 13, through Earth Day, April 22, 2010, bring any real fur apparel, including trims, accessories and shearling, regardless of condition, to a Buffalo Exchange location near you. Visit their website for their nationwide locations–or call toll-free 1-866-235-8255.

To claim a tax deduction, please mail your fur directly to The Humane Society of the United States: Place your fur in a sturdy box (a large padded envelope is fine for small items) and send to Coats for Cubs via The Humane Society of the United States:
2100 L St., NW
Washington, D.C. 20037
(For more information visit their website, or call 301–258-1490.)

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