Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Furry Preditors

Okay, I saw a television show about people with Furry Fetishes. It was a crime show and I was instantly fascinated. I mean why would grown men and women dress as animals to get their groove on? They hold conventions etc. I don't think I've ever heard of a shoe fetish convention or panty fetish convention, have you?

As the above mentioned show progressed, there was some talk about Furries using their outfits to hug children. That it could be a way for a pedophile to get a welcome hug from a child. Think Mickey Mouse at Disney World, or a mascot at your favorite game. No one suspects they are out to get their rocks off. So I nabbed this topic with gusto thinking, "Surely the web has some info on this type of predatory crime." Sadly (in the case of my blog) there isn't one. Not a single solitary one.

Now I refuse to believe that any grouping of people, including religious nuts (waving hand high), won't have a least one deviant in there to mess things up. Maybe the Furry crime I'm looking for just hasn't been uncovered. So I am taking a spin on the predator blog. Hang on.

First off, what is a Furry? Wikipedia gave me this definition: a context of sexual fetishism in which a person becomes sexually aroused by descriptions or depictions of transformations, usually the transformations of people into other beings or objects. This definition is a bit off the beaten path but refers to those who enjoy a little anthropomorphistic sexual play. In particular Furries find that being an animal is cuddly, soothing, and sexual.

Of course I delved further. Apparently there have been a few articles on the subject. I found this one too, at The Register: Furry is a word which has probably been asked to do a little too much work. It has numerous meanings, and it's not particularly easy to find two people who agree on the precise definition for any of them. The original two definitions we supplied in the first version of the FAQ are: 1. an anthropomorphic animal character. i.e. an animal with human characteristics. 2. a human who relates strongly, in whatever way, to the idea of the characters outlined in the previous definition. This may involve anything from a person who simply enjoys viewing furry fanzines or films, to someone who actually desires to be a 'real' furry, or believe that they are literally a non-human trapped within a human form. But not all ALF regulars are interested in anthropomorphics. Some are largely unaware of the 'furry fandom,' or are simply uninterested in it for a variety of reasons. Most of us who created ALF were 'fans' of one kind or another, and this coloured our view- point perhaps more than we realised. So, after much discussion, we'd like to add a third definition, one that tries to include everyone who has made ALF a home. 3. a person with an important emotional/spiritual connection with an animal or animals, real, fictional or symbolic.

Note that the latter definition does not center on sex. This was a problem for the purposes of my blog. How dare they (please note the sarcasm)! My spin is this, animal predators. TADAAAA!

We see them everywhere right now. There are people like those mentioned above you really enjoy dressing or fantasizing about furry creatures. They practice life this way, the associate with the animals, they spiritually connect. And guess what? Many of our readers do too. I don't mean that they dress up. I mean that they crave the primitive link with something mystical that is a-human to their experience.

Exhibit A: The Vampire. This is anthropomorphic. There is shifting involved between the human and the "other" paranormal embodiment of something basic and primitive to our fears. And the Vampire book is everywhere.

Exhibit B: The Werewolf. Even more obvious than above because we are actually talking about a shift between human form and full-on animal form, right? RIGHT. There are other types too involving the panther craze, the hawk, the bear.

And what do these things have in common but the predator. We humans are fascinated by the predator. It speaks to the core urge of self-preservation. It takes us back to early humans grunting to create fire and save ourselves in a night where predators lurk. It produces adrenaline and in a romance can hint at desires too instinctual to put a name to. It offers an excuse for accepting those urges because we claim them to be a part of the "animal" within.

Where am I going with this, you might ask? Well, humans are drawn to the things which logically defy us. We, or at least I, don't understand the desire to dress like an overgrown stuffed animal (by the way, Furry Community, that doesn't mean I don't want to understand. In fact, contact me if you are one, I'd love to interview you on my own blog.). And I'm not claiming that doing so is the overriding instinct of humans as a whole.

However, think of the predator. The predator is what we have feared from the beginning of time. Some Furries act this out... being taken by a predator... because it is stimulating to them whether spiritually or sexually. But in our common experience you are more apt to find society fearful of the predator. And yet, we gawk, we explore their psyche through books or prison interviews. We want to know why, don't we? We want to understand how someone becomes a predator when humans are supposed to have evolved above that primitive, instinctual crime into a cohesive, communicative environment.

Perhaps it's why this blog topic appealed to the six of us. We want to understand. Our morbid curiosity demands it.

I don't know. Maybe the Furries have it right. Maybe if we allow people to safely act out their aggression, we will find fewer deviants in normal social intercourse. If it means one less child is harmed, I say dress up the Mansons and Dahmers of the world. Go Furry.



  1. Maybe the reason you couldn't find an incident involving a furry lies in the nature of the fetish. Yes, I can see where a pedophile could use the costume to lure children into a welcome embrace, but...

    The child (I'm sure there are exceptions of course) isn't dressed as a fluffy stuffed animal. If my understanding is correct, both partners must don the furs for the experience to truly be a furistic time. :D

    The hunter and the hunted must be in the role, otherwise it would be more akin to role playing for someone who is into beastialty and that's a whole other blog topic...

  2. OOOOhhhhh. EW! I hadn't thought of that! Excellent point, my friend.

    Okay how about someone POSING as a furry when the convention comes to town and taking advantage of it... maybe too coincidental. Hmm. Then those who are Mascots using their costume to approach children. More realistic issue but perhaps yet another topic. Still deals with the predator though, literally and figuratively.

  3. Hi Kelly,

    Great post. I saw the CSI show on television that you're talking about. Actually, I thought it was fiction. lol See how naive I am. You did make a good point about Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse at Disney Land, but I would hope they do a in depth background check. However, there are carnivals and other places where kids hang out that background checks probably aren't done, and those places are a predators haven.

    A very thought provoking blog, Kelly.


  4. Very interesting. I saw that CSI show, too, and also thought it was just made up. So do some people dress up as, say, rabbits because they want to experience being the recipient of predation? Like some offshoot of S/M?

  5. See now I know I'm the twisted one. I saw the episode and immendiately went, "of course!" (okay-and a little bit of "ewwww.") I'm pretty sure you'd have to go a long way to invent a fetish that isn't already around. Great spin, Kelly.

  6. My hubby watches Ripleys Believe it or Not. They had a program about people who alter their body through tattoos and plastic surgery to become an animal. Tiger, Leopard, even Lizard. These people lose their human identity and become the animal. Of course that is the extreme end of the Furry Fetish.
    And people I have dealings with would tell you that, yes there are fetish conventions. They are not held in public like a sci-fi convention or a writer's convention. They are usually held in a private place where lots of people of the same mind can come together and celebrate their commonality.
    It would be interesting (and way too time consuming to actually do this) to study in depth where the desire to be part animal comes from. Even if we don't participate in a "fetish" as Kelly said, were-animals, shape shifters, vampires, even ancient mythical centaurs, minotaur, etc. intrigue us and have for centuries.
    Maybe there is a little animal in us all.

  7. Heh. I saw that CSI episode quite a long time ago. I suspect that there is an element of anonymity involved, too.

    Much like there is on the internet, the individual once disguised in costume can be anyone. Alpha werewolf, scary vampire, sexy tiger... anyone but the reality of themselves.

  8. Okay...um....ewwwwww. Missed the CSI episode. Don't watch much tv. Did see an interesting show about people who have dental surgery to get vampire fangs.Once again....ewwww.

  9. Hi Teri, actually yes. Rabbits and other woodland creatures for playacting those violent "taking" fantasies. I read a brief article about how it satisfies that kind of s/m quality.

  10. Oh my God, I can never use the word "furry" again. This is so bad. The blog opened my eyes to a scary kind of predator. Hugging children? Ugh. So creepy.

    When I was a volunteer at a crisis centre in Toronto, we had a caller who had a foot fetish. He'd call with some kind of problem and gradually work around to feet - women's feet. We soon recognized the guy and had Standing Orders for our volunteers to cut him off. Oh yes, and we had the guys who phoned in to talk to a women and get their jolies - we had standing orders about them as well. Life was interesting.

    And then we had suicide calls with the suicide in progress. I remember one of them in particular. I kept the man on the line,(he had seriously OD) asked him to open the door so the police and ambulance wouldn't have to break it down. Bless him, he crawled to the door and I waited until the police and paramedics got there.
    The man sent word from the hospital and thanked me for saving his life.

  11. I had a job like that too. One woman had a hand rake and she was going to stab herself by falling on it. Managed to get the police over there but it left me shaken.

  12. Very interesting blog.
    They showed a quick blurb on tv a few years ago about a woman who married a dolphin.


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