The Toronto Star reports a simmering feud between former NHL enforcer Georges Laraque and Toronto GM Brian Burke over sales of a Maple Leafs team jacket trimmed with real coyote fur.
Laraque wrote Burke a letter asking him to reverse the organizational decision that endorses the jacket.
“Coyotes and other animals trapped for their fur often suffer for days before dying of exposure, frostbite, shock or infection,” Laraque wrote in his letter, sponsored by People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA). “Mother coyotes, desperate to return to their young, often chew off their own limbs in an attempt to free themselves.
“On fur farms, animals are kept in cramped, filthy cages before being bludgeoned, gassed or even skinned alive.”
Laraque also released the letter publicly, a move that rankled Burke.
“Georges is a good man, and passionate in his views,” Burke told The Star. “I respect him, but I do not share his opinions on this topic.
“I had assumed the letter was a personal one, and was not impressed when I learned the media also received it.”
Burke said the Leafs won’t change their mind on the issue.
The jacket is made by Canada Goose and still advertised online at Real Sports Apparel, though a call placed by The Star revealed the store had sold out with no plans to order more. PETA claims it has sent several letters to Canada Goose over the years urging the company to reconsider its use of fur.