Don’t buy suspicious Imitation fur and deliver a blow to the fur trade!

Naturally you do not buy real fur but maybe Imitation fur. But is it really Imitation fur? Because what is called Imitation fur could really well be dog- or cat fur. This is namely cheaper than Imitation fur. Deceiving label put you on the wrong track and in this manner you are unwillingly and without suspicion supporting the dog- and cat fur trade and with that you are supporting animal suffering in Asia.

How do you know that you are dealing with suspicious Imitation fur?

First check whether the article:

  • is unlabeled, or
  • labeled as faux fur, or
  • is labeled with a known or unknown exotic name, or
  • Labeled as rabbit fur.

When buying a product where Imitation fur is being processed into the article, have a close look at the label to determine the origin of the product. Is the origin from the Asian countries like China, South Korea, Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia, The Philippines and parts of Indonesia then you can do an inconclusive burning test or watching for keratin structures under a microscope to take the first steps in determining whether it is hair or really Imitation fur. With the naked eye it is impossible to segregate chemically processed dog- or cat fur from other kinds of fur or “Imitation”.

We could do the fire test but that is bad for your health and the chemical coated and painted dog- and cat fur smells like plastic as well. The chem. treated, dyed and shaved dog- and cat fur has the same look and feel as “Imitation” fur. So the task to smell, feel or see what is real or “Imitation” has become an impossible task. Microscopic research could show if the fur is real or not. Synthetic fibers generally have a smoother structure than the hairs of a mammal.

Via DNA-analysis can be decided if the animal fur is from a rabbit or not. But also here it is true that aggressive chemicals affect the DNA, so there is a chance that the analysis stays inconclusive. The DNA method is in any case not adequate to prove the presence of dog- or cat fur; this can only be done with the SIAM-method.


The SIAM-method is the only method to trace dog- or cat fur. You only need a small sample or even one hair to reveal what it really is. The method is developed a few years ago in Germany by research lab “Gene-Facts” in cooperation with the “Institute of Technical Biochemistry” of the University Saarbrucken. SIAM stands for ‘Species Identification of Animals by Maldi-tof mass spectrometry’. Research has brought to light that the SIAM-method is very reliable and accurate-even if the fur is chemically treated.

How can I do the fur- or fire test?

As described above you’d better don’t do the fire test, it is bad for your health due to the gasses that are coming from synthetic fibers and synthetically coated fur. You easily set fire to the whole bunch of hears and breathe in too much of the unhealthy fumes. But if you really want to do burn the material, take in secret a sample of the material by cutting it with a scissor in the changing room. Best is to take more pieces of items with fur at one time from the shop into the changing room, so you can take more samples at once be sure to label the brands the samples are coming form on a piece of paper. When you suspect a certain brand you can send the info to us and we take action.

When testing, take a sample of your own hair first, burn it and see what happens, if it smells like scorched flesh and crumbles between your thumb and index finger then you’ll know the effect of fire on real hair.

If the furry material has a similar odor but with a scent of burned chemicals than you are a bit closer to determining the product for its contents. Faux fur produces little melted black oval forms on top of the strands and really has a chemical odor. It doesn’t crumble in the same order as real hair does if you rub it between your fingers.

The chemical odors are due to Teflon and polymers and the real fur can smell like plastic, just like Imitation fur.

And because illegal fur from dogs- and cats is colored and shaved before illegally entering the EU, it is almost impossible to see or feel if it is real. That is why it is better to not buy any artificial looking fur anymore, because it could be real dog- or cat fur while being tricked into believing it is Imitation.

Extra warning: In earlier days you could recognize real fur because the under layer was leather. Nowadays the fur is being woven trough cloth material or gauze and makes you fooled in thinking you are buying Imitation fur. The only way to be sure if it is really Imitation or real fur is detection by the for this moment still expensive SIAM- method.

Which articles of Dog and Cat fur are most common?

  • Collars of jackets.
  • Edges of gloves.
  • Edges of shoes, slippers and boots.
  • Toy mice.
  • Lining of coats.
  • Scratch posts for cats.

Which dog and cat races are the most common for fur production?

  • Labrador
  • Golden Retriever
  • Shepard
  • Collie
  • Saint-Bernard
  • Raccoon
  • Grey and red cat

This website does not contain any shocking images, unless otherwise stated!

We need volunteers

If you would like to actively help us, then contact our campaign team and sign up. Our protests against dog and cat cruelty in Asia are always peaceful. We bring animal cruelty to the attention of the public, the media and politicians.

The SIAM methode is the only way to track dog- and cat fur.

Since January 1st, 2009 it is illegal to import dog and cat fur. However, the law is hardly ever acted upon and is very often violated. We want to expose people who break the law without using violence.