According to Global Times, the sale of small live-animal key chains is on the rise in China. Turtles and fish are being sealed up in airtight plastic containers and sold as trinkets to shoppers with growing popularity. Venders claim the water inside the pouch is nutrient-rich, and that the animals can live for a month or longer. Sadly, we’ve heard this total nonsense before. Back in 2008, Olympics paraphernalia hawkers delved into pocket-sized animal abuse as well. Worst of all, the practice remains completely legal in China.
Animal cruelty laws in China are pretty much non-existent, and cover only wild animals, according to Global Times. Fish need oxygen to breathe, as do turtles, so regardless of how many bogus claims the venders make about the water, these animals die in a matter of days, if not hours.
According to Xinhua, the key chains are becoming increasingly popular around elementary schools, where they are marketed to students from the stationary shops surrounding campus. They sell for as little as 5 kuai.
It’s an example of total abuse, neglect, and utter disregard for life. Almost worse than the venders are their adult customers, who snatch them up because they’re “cute” or think they’ll bring good luck. It would take less than a few minutes of actual thought to realize how twisted it is to carry around a small, suffocating creature for personal amusement.
This is the second animal rights controversy involving goldfish in as many months. Earlier this year, controversy plagued the CCTV gala, where magician Fu Yandong (aka ‘the goldfish whisperer’) was questioned by animal rights activists over his treatment of fish in the show.