Animal Defenders International


Animal Defenders International

New primate campaign goes head to head with D&G

Posted: 2 June 2005

D&G Chimp advert slammed

Today’s launch of the “My Mate’s a Primate” campaign from Animal Defenders International (ADI), which calls for an end to the use of performing chimpanzees in advertising, has coincided with a new advertising campaign from Dolce & Gabbana using a chimpanzee.

ADI are this month running adverts urging people to show more compassion for our closest relatives in the animal kingdom. Simultaneously, D&G are running adverts using a performing chimpanzee.

Chimpanzee experts Roger and Deborah Fouts, who are in London for the ADI My Mate’s a Primate launch, have expressed shock at the advert. The Foutses, Directors of the Chimpanzee and Human Communication Institute at Central Washington University, came to international prominence when they taught chimpanzees to communicate in human sign language. Since then, they have dedicated their lives to caring for chimpanzees and campaigning against keeping chimps in captivity.

The Foutses said, on seeing the advert: “You can see from this photograph that this is a really unhappy chimp."

Animal Defenders International exposed the horrific abuse of chimpanzees at Mary Chipperfield Promotions that took place behind the scenes, whilst preparing the animals for advertising and film appearances. ADI brought summonses and Mary Chipperfield was convicted of 13 counts of cruelty.

Jan Creamer, Chief Executive of ADI, says: “Chimpanzees in particular suffer greatly in the entertainment industry - both with travelling circuses and with suppliers of animals for the TV and movie industry. There is an inevitable level of coercion, deprivation, confinement, and lack of appropriate access to their own species.

"The great apes live in complex societies in which they show co-operation and compassion within their extended family. Yet performing animal suppliers require regular one on one human contact to ensure close control and obedience during performances. This means that social deprivation and stress are inevitable consequences of their use as performers."

"Our message is simple, if companies feel it is acceptable to treat primates in this way for a cheap gimmick in an advert, then we will be calling on our supporters not to buy their products."

Seiko, whose watch features in the D&G advert, told ADI today that the advert was photographed in Italy using a captive chimpanzee.

Read ADI’s letter to Seiko and D&G

Read Seiko and Schwaben Park’s responses to ADI

Read ADI’s reply to Seiko and Schwaben Park

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