In a major win for animals, Croatia’s fur-farming ban went into effect on January 1 after a 10-year phase-out period — thanks, in part, to efforts by The Talk co-host Sharon Osbourne.

When chinchilla fur farmers tried to cripple the ban by excluding chinchillas, Osbourne — who once wore fur but swore it off and donated her furs to PETA for the homeless after learning about the cruelty involved — stepped in by sharing her PETA video, which shows that chinchillas are electrocuted and that their necks are broken on fur farms, as well as urging the government to protect the fur industry’s smallest victims.

Now, the government has done just that, and this week, Osbourne sent a letter to the country’s prime minister thanking him for upholding the ban. Croatian Member of the European Parliament Davor Škrlec credited Osbourne, Goran Višnjić (who previously starred in a PETA anti-fur ad), and PETA in a statement about Croatia’s fur ban:

“If all people really knew how animals were treated and killed, they would surely raise their voices against fur farming even more loudly. Campaigns in which celebrities like Goran Višnjić and Sharon Osbourne have participated have greatly contributed to raising public awareness and ultimately led to the ban on fur farming in Croatia. I am glad that I was able to contribute to reaching that goal, and I congratulate Animal Friends Croatia and the international organization PETA, without whom such a comprehensive and successful initiative would not have been possible.”

Sharon Osbourne wrote:

“I was delighted to learn that Croatia’s ban on fur farming went into effect on 1 January after having been threatened by furriers for so many years. The closing of fur farms in Croatia means that the fur industry’s tiniest victims – chinchillas – will no longer be confined to filthy, cramped cages, they will no longer be electrocuted and their little necks will no longer be broken.

“On behalf of my friends at PETA and Animal Friends Croatia, thank you for spreading a message of compassion towards animals and setting a historic example for other countries to follow.”

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