The bizarre and possibly morbid item – including the intact cat’s head – is up for sale on New Zealand auction site TradeMe – for a whopping $1,400 starting price.
A description provided with the ‘one-off, glamour puss’ bag says it was made by professional taxidermist Clare Hobbs and ‘expresses her artistic passions and desire to engineer the surreal, particularly using feral and domestic felines’.
It also stated no animals were killed for Ms. Hobbs’ work.
Spokesperson for the website, Logan Mudge, said the company took assurances no cruelty was involved ‘at face value’, Stuff.co.nz reported.
‘It is certainly a statement bag and while it’s not for me, we suspect there will be a buyer out there who is keen. This is a pretty unusual bag and we expect the auction will attract a lot of attention over the next few days.’
Despite that, opponents have condemned the bag.
Save Animals From Exploitation director Hans Kriek said the bag was in ‘poor taste’ and ‘disrespectful’, Stuff reported.
‘If you were to do these with people it would be absolutely not acceptable … is turning a cat into a handbag any worse than turning an elephant’s foot into an umbrella stand?’
In New Zealand, carrying out taxidermy on animals that had ded naturally or been euthanased was legal.
No-one commenting on the auction had a problem with a cat getting their tongue, either, with the bag dividing opinions.
Some saw it as a joke – one person asked if they could be made into a bag, too.
Others questioned how the animal died, while another asked outright: ‘what the hell is wrong with you?’.
But at least one described it as ‘beautiful’.
There doesn’t appear to be any question the bag uses a real cat.
The auction ends on Wednesday evening.
Music: “Teller of the Tales” Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0 License