Talk:Raccoon dog

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The Need for this Discussion of the Raccoon Dog and Fur[edit]

Many of you have questioned the motives for my entry here. I work in the anthroplogical and conservation fringes and lecture in Aboriginal Art. I have used NONE of my own research as that is forbidden by wiki. SO I have linked to the various initiatives of Incentive Conservation that are now considered very effective, and practised by the WWF and various Conservation authroritis around the planet. Wherever one encounters native peoples th story is the same: one of moral imperialism ruining their economies, from Cree to Inuit to Sami to Evenk to Bushmen of the Kalahari. Meanwhile it is modern western civilsation that actually destroys habitats. No coincidence that the most common mammal predators are also the most used for fur and hunting: mink and fox. Here is a little of the Inuit response to our moral imperialism:

So why the Raccoon dog to be singled out by me with reference to fur? Well because I came across it while googling for an image, and read about the fascinating animal. When I read it, it smacked of cultural prejudice. From cultures as diverse as Japan, through the 250 tribes of Siberia, a colossal land area, through north westrn Europe the animal is common. The Sami have tried to encourage it as a furbearer, and some fur farms have worked with the Sami with their stocks. It appears that animals like the wolverine however, and possibly distemper, have interrupted its prolificity there. Nevertheless it is not an uncommon sight, and certainly you will find Raccoon dog furs at Sami markets. EXCEPT throughout the North of Scandinavia and Baltic Russia it is called Finn Raccoon; a word that was absurdly absent from the article. That demonstrates a degree of cultural prejudice in itslef, but then consider this.

To all these diverse cultures...from China to Russia to Scandinvaia to Japan ....both the aboriginal and "civilised" cultures, the Raccoon dog is seen as a furbearer. An animal which is used...for meat aswell as fur. So to me, stumbling on this wikipedia article....and the factual stuff was okay as far as it went....NOT to mention it apart from in a detrimental attack by the animal rights an animal used by man throughout all those ridiculous. As ridiculous in fact, as seeing an entry about sheep or goats or cows without mentioning meat sheepskin and leather as human uses of those animals. Quite simply, it is breathtakingly absent..or was....of how the animal is perceived and usd by peoples throughout the North, China and Japan. What? It is okay for us to farm cows but not for the evenk or Chinese to farm Racoon Dog? Isn't....given the length of time and deep rooted importance of the animal's sue in all these cultures...that just a little racist and speciesist.

If wikipedia is to work as a testimony of human knowlege, it MUST take into accont all perspectives; and not be moralistic or culturally prejudiced. A young estonian colleague who works in Conservation that I know has a coat which she describes of course as finn raccoon. She was bemused when she read this entry, and fully endorses me writing the fact she gave me the Traffic link. Her words were: "but it is always used for fur; in many areas it is considered pest, in others worshipped...(laughs) but they still use it for fur.....and here they are on wiki trying to pretend it is a pet dog and we are all evil for using it. Maybe we should cut all the forest down in the North and make rape seed oil fields or graze cows instead like you do in England(laughs)and then there would Tanuki be!"

Oh and in case you have any doubt that what I say is correct, note also that Saba Douglas Hamilton (Big Cat Diary)...who has spent some time with the Sami....has taken to wearing fox fur too on her Arctic schedules.

So please try to keep an open mind about these things; okay if China IS skinning animals alive that needs to be addressed. BUT it simply does not happen on western fur farms like SAGA and the Raccoon dog IS of vital importance to aboriginal and rural people who rely on it for trade and food. As it says, Japan for example culls 70 000 a year to keep the balance in check and that is under license to hunters. Any discussion of the animal in an Encyclopedic context cannot refer merely to allegations made by animal rights groups without looking at the animals economic imporatnce to humans and the way in whcich conservationists now recognise that such activities can have enormous benefits for habitat protection for whole eco systems; significant because the protection of such forests in Siberia is also the Tiger's only hope of salvation, as logging and oil replace areas of traditional use. Yes the raccoon dog is a beautiful animal, but to some it is as important to another beautiful animal, the sheep for example. And we slit their throats open while they are alive. I see no ethical difference between a raccoon dog hat and a plate of lamb. Except while on provides sustenance for a day or two, the other can conserve your head from heat loss and look beautiful when worn for 50 years. So please not let you own western prejudices interfere with knowledge. I have provided a wealth of interesting sources relevant to this here; have seen the animals in the wild and on a fur farm, and know what I am talking about. I only wish som of the Siberian people I am talking about could make an ntry here thmselves; but I have found as an academic the process difficult enough with the conventions lol! Ironic when some of the misinformation floating around the wikipedia with regards to conspiracy thories etc is presented as fact. Well the Raccoon dog IS used for fur, IS farmed to high welfare standards in many areas, IS culled for its fur as part of Conservation programmes,IS important economically to incredibly culturally varied native and rural peoples over a vast distance, and is used by hundreds of fashion houses many of which buy direct from native sources. All that IS fact....keep the morality out of it.

Signed for archive purposes only.  William Harris |talk  09:37, 28 November 2016 (UTC)


Actual region in Russia is not considered Siberia, but Russian far east. Early 20 century region was known with name Usuria.

Signed for archive purposes only.  William Harris |talk  09:37, 28 November 2016 (UTC)

Species debate[edit]

I restored the reference to the species debate (which was deleted despite being cited). I added an additional citation. Note also that the editor who removed the debate broke the References section by not checking to see that the reference he deleted was used elsewhere in the article. I moved it to be after the list of subspecies, which seemed more appropriate.

Signed for archive purposes only.  William Harris |talk  09:37, 28 November 2016 (UTC)


"Racoon dogs have a craving for raw, human flesh." lol

Signed for archive purposes only.  William Harris |talk  09:37, 28 November 2016 (UTC)

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