Canada Goose ruffles my feathers

Photograph courtesy of Critter Care Wildlife, via The Fur Bearers

A coyote caught in a trap. Found in 2013, BC.

Canada Goose Inc. is a Canadian retail corporation that sells winter clothing. It was founded in Toronto in 1957 by Sam Tick, who was an entrepreneur with a business selling raincoats and snowmobile suits.

The company’s goal was to keep Canadians warm in the harshest of winters. In the 1990’s, Tick’s grandson became president and chief executive officer and pledged to have the company’s products made exclusively in Canada.

Tick would never have expected the furor over the fur that lines his coats.

The trim around the hood is made from coyote fur. Hunters in Canada trap, shoot and bludgeon coyotes to death for it and some Canadians, me included, are howling.

A leg-hold traps is the most widely used method for trapping animals in Canada. It resembles a bear trap, only it is used for smaller animals, such as coyotes.

According to the Association for the Protection of Fur-bearing Animals, 75 per cent of live harvests in Canada and the United States result from leg-hold traps.

Leg-hold traps with teeth have been banned. But even without the spikes, coyotes’ legs and feet are broken. The animals are left unable to move and to fend for themselves.

The trap limits their ability to run. The goal is to keep the animal hostage even through the struggle of trying to escape. Unfortunately, many animals succumb to their injuries.

Although, the padded leg-hold trap is certified as humane, the humanity seems to be missing given the resulting injuries. Animals have been known to break teeth trying to escape by chewing on limbs or trying to chew through medal. How is this humane?

Many caught in traps succumb to hypothermia, blood loss or dehydration and sometimes may suffer for days before the trapper will come to fetch them.

Trapping can lead to other more vulnerable animals, such as endangered species, becoming caught. This can lead to many different problems for conservationists who are trying to maintain healthy populations of vulnerable species.

According to Statistics Canada in 2010, 80 per cent of animals killed for fur were done on fur farms. In 2014, Statistics Canada found 230 registered mink fur farms across Canada. The total number of animals bred in fur farms is more than 3 million animals per year.

Canada Goose gets their furs from fur farms and from trappers.

Canada Goose has always had an entrepreneurial spirit, thanks to its owner but today there is a need for new inspiration, a more humane one.  It’s time for the company to take flight in t a new direction.