U.S. national team and Everton, England, soccer goalkeeper Tim Howard knows what it’s like to endure serious pain, having played through a dislocated finger and two broken bones in his back. But he also knows that that’s nothing compared to what animals experience at the hands of the fur industry. That’s why he was eager to team up with PETA for a brand-new ad campaign that shows off his amply tattooed and muscled torso alongside the words “Ink, Not Mink. Be Comfortable in Your Own Skin—Let Animals Keep Theirs.”The new ad was shot by top celebrity photographer Trevor Leighton.
“Protecting animals is very important to me, and I think speaking out against fur is an amazing cause,” Howard said when he sat down for an exclusive video interview with PETA. “When I see someone wearing fur, I just want to sit them down in front of one of PETA’s videos and show them just how badly animals suffer for this supposed fabric that no one needs.”
Every year, millions of animals—including foxes, rabbits, raccoons, minks, and even dogs and cats—are beaten, gassed, electrocuted, and skinned alive for their fur. Howard and PETA want everyone to know that for every coat, collar, or cuff made of fur, animals suffered immensely—and that stylish, fur-free options are widely available from high-profile designers such as Ralph Lauren, Stella McCartney,Tommy Hilfiger, Calvin Klein, and Vivienne Westwood.
Howard’s work on and off the field has netted him a slew of distinctions, including MLS Humanitarian of the Year, U.S. Soccer Athlete of the Year, a spot on the IFFHS World’s Best Goalkeeper top 10 list, and, in 2013, CONCACAF Goalkeeper of the Year. He joins a growing list of top athletes—including Terrell Suggs, Willis McGahee, Maurice Jones-Drew, Tony Gonzalez, Michael Strahan, “Sugar” Shane Mosley, Metta World Peace, and ultra-endurance athlete Rich Roll—who have teamed up with PETA or its affiliates to encourage kindness to animals.
For more information, please visit PETA.org.