BERLIN – The online marketplace eBay plans to ban the sale of dog and cat pelts on its German-language Web sites starting Tuesday.
Alexander Witt, a spokesman for eBay in Germany, said the ban was in response to protests from animal rights groups that believe clothing and other goods claiming to contain rabbit or mink fur are actually made illegally from cats and dogs.
"We want to forbid these dealers from our marketplace," he said, adding that the ban would encompass eBay's sites in Austria, Germany and Switzerland.
Witt said the ban would be extended to France, Italy and Spain, with more European countries to follow. A previous ban is already in place in the United Kingdom, Witt said.
A move to do the same in the U.S., where eBay was founded, is being considered, he said.
"That is a conversation, but no decision has been made yet," Witt said.
Peter Pueschel, a program leader with the International Fund for Animal Welfare, said in a statement that he welcomed eBay's decision as an important step in animal protection.
"We hope that others will follow worldwide, and that such products will be taken off the market," Pueschel said.
The online marketplace does not allow the sale of live animals on its Web site. Rules governing the sale of plants vary widely from country to country, Witt said, often depending on customs regulations.