DUDE WTF ASIA: China Selling Live Animal Keychains

And now, it’s time for your daily sad “OMG” news of the day: the Global Times is reporting that live animals (including fish and turtles) are being permanently sealed into plastic bags and sold as keychains for good luck–and worst of all, it’s legal. Treehugger writes,

Despite the fact that the selling of animals as keyring ornaments is a clear-cut case of animal cruelty, it is actually entirely within the law. Chinese law prohibits the sale of wild animals — a designation which evidently does not apply to the Brazil turtles and kingfish being sold.

According to these sellers, these keyrings aren’t considered abuse. One vendor claimed that the “water in the key ring has ‘nutrients’…They can live for months inside there.” Right, because turtles only drink water to sustain themselves and don’t require anything else like oxygen or food to survive. Excuse me while I go hyperventilate from the thought of being permanently encased in a plastic bag for eternity.

The extent to which vendors will go to make a quick buck is astounding–and the fact that people are actually buying things worries me even more. Are there really people out there who don’t think beyond the first step of “Oooh, this is super cool and I want to buy it”? Maybe I’m too neurotic but whenever I purchase something off the street, I always try to imagine my life in two weeks with this potential new product and how much I would need to use it.

In this case, the questions I would ask myself is, “Do I really need this live turtle attached to a keychain?” followed by “What happens when this live turtle on a keychain eventually dies?” and conclude with images of myself opening the front door to my house as a dead turtle is dangles from my keys. Then again, the thought of valeting my car in front of a restaurant so I can see the attendant’s face as I toss him a rotting turtle carcass with my keys is pretty tempting. But let’s be real: this is the part when I’d walk away from the vendor and continue on with my life.

I do have to admit that I am a little disappointed with these live animal keyrings. China, is that the best you could do? Who wants a turtle or a fish hanging out with their keys? If I’m going to have a part of the animal kingdom dangling near my legs while driving my car, I ‘d want this animal to be awesome and fantastic. Here are my ideas for what would make even better keyring options:

  • Panda Bear
  • Sea Urchin
  • Rabbit (Why just the foot when you can have the whole thing?)
  • T-Rex (This was Koji’s idea)
  • Chubby Asian baby (The plan is that this baby will later grow up to take care of me when I get old and need to wear diapers.)

As soon as I figure out how to properly seal one of these things into an enormous plastic bag (or in the case of the T-rex, how to utilize Jurassic Park technology to re-create a dinosaur), I’ll be in Beijing, hocking my wares on the streets. See you there.

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About Moye

I am a Japanese-American girl who was born, raised and is most probably stuck in traffic right this second in Los Angeles. I'm currently one of the co-editors of 8Asians and like to distract myself with good food, reading long books, playing video games, catching up on celebrity news, choosing my new new haircut and then writing all about it on Hello Moye and sometimes here on Twitter if I can get it in under 140 words or less. You can reach me at moye[at]8asians.com.
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