One woman decided to rescue a sable destined to be turned into a fur coat. Who says one person can’t make a difference?
Even though many people around the world are against using animals for fur, there are still some places where it’s more acceptable than not.
The sable is a species of marten, a small carnivorous mammal primarily inhabiting the forest environments of Russia, from the Ural Mountains throughout Siberia, and northern Mongolia. Historically, it has been hunted for its highly valued dark brown or black fur, which remains a luxury good to this day. While hunting is still common in Russia, most fur on the market is now commercially farmed.
Due to its silky texture and range of colours, the animal has one of the most expensive kinds of fur in the world.
In some parts of the world, like Russia, the demand for sable fur is growing as it’s used to produce items such as bedspreads and even underwear. According to reports, there are around 70 farms in the country that raise and use sable for their fur.
Zhenya found a picture of a sable online, she instantly fell in love with it and decided to learn more about it. When she discovered it was one of many who would have a tragic end as someone’s coat or hat, she decided to do something about it.
“Eventually, I learned that there was an opportunity to buy her out from a fur farm,” the woman told Bored Panda. “She would have died there, so I decided to save the little fella.”
It hasn’t been easy, and Zhenya has had to work extremely hard to get Umora to let her guard down and become comfortable in her new surroundings.
Zhenya is completely honest about the entire experience, and even though she is happy she rescued this sweet sable, she doesn’t recommend living with one as a pet. These are wild animals after all.
“One has to go through a lot before they can start living with it comfortably,” she said. “It requires a lot of time and patience. It might even take a couple of years for you to begin to fully enjoy your life with it.”
There are 17 subspecies of sable that inhabit lowland and mountain forested areas. Sable is best known by its beautiful, soft pelt that is very popular and valuable in the fur industry (popularity of the sable fur dates from the Middle Ages). Since majority of pelt originates from the farms (where sables are cultivated for fur), number of wild sables is still large and stable. Sable is not on the list of endangered species.
Sables are agile climbers, but they spend most of their life on the ground. They live in the well hidden burrows near the riverbanks or inside the roots of the trees. They’re also a crepuscular animal (active at twilight). During the mating season, they become active during the day.
The sable is a carnivore (meat-eater). Its diet consists of weasels, hares, ermine, rodents, fish and slugs. It occasionally consumes berries.
To learn more about the rescued sable Umora, check out Zhenya’s Instagram page and stay updated with the latest photos of the duo.