Animal rights activists may find themselves put off by a new line of shoes made by Gucci for Fall 2015, which are embellished with the fur of kangaroos. Kangaroo fur is, according to a Gucci spokesperson, a “well-managed harvest program, and thus can be classified under our guidelines as a sustainable fur.” There is a reasonable essay on Quartz that explains why—in Australia, kangaroos are considered like deer are in the U.S., and some hunting is approved to keep down populations—while also illuminating the drawbacks such as the notion that advanced civilizations hunting animals for resources is inhumane at its very core.
I do not believe either of these things to be the issue. The issue is: kangaroos are extremely gross. Why do you want them touching your foot?
Some fast kangaroo facts:
1. Kangaroos are marsupials who have an unusual method of birth: after gestating a baby kangaroo, or “joey,” the animal crawls up into its mother’s pouch, where it feeds and lives for over a year until grown enough to survive the outside;
2. Kangaroos have large tails which they use as a sort of “fifth leg,” acting as a lever on the ground to propel them faster and further, whilst looking like oversized rat tails;
3. Kangaroo fur looks like rat fur;
4. Kangaroos are gross;
5. This thing:
Joeys urinate and defecate in the mother’s pouch. The lining of the pouch absorbs some of the mess, but occasionally the mother will need to clean it out, which she does by inserting her long snout into the pouch and using her tongue to remove the contents. A young joey will remain attached to a nipple while the mother does this, but any older ones will be temporarily kicked out.
Now that you know this, feel free to go pay $1100 for a pair of kangaroo fur-lined shoes that are just a version of something Céline already did three years ago, except with fur from an animal that is much cuter than a stinking kangaroo. Think twice about where you put your tootsies, feetple; you don’t know where that coat has been.
Contact the author at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Image via Gucci