Not only is down a cruelly obtained material, it could also seriously harm your health. Workers often violently pluck feathers from intelligent, loving ducks and geese while they’re still alive or slit the birds’ throats—often when they’re improperly stunned and still conscious—before stuffing the feathers into down bedding, pillows, and jackets. These down-filled items can cause inflammatory reactions in humans that can lead to serious and lifelong health issues.
What Is Feather Duvet Lung Disease, and Why Is It Dangerous?
Feather duvet lung disease is a form of hypersensitivity pneumonitis caused by repeated, long-term exposure to goose and duck feathers. Proteins in the feathers cause inflammation in lungs’ air sacs, leading to a variety of symptoms, including shortness of breath, coughing, chest pain, dizziness, runny nose, and eye irritation. Symptoms can develop in a matter of weeks or even up to five years after exposure, so the disease can be difficult to diagnose properly. If left untreated or misdiagnosed, the condition can lead to permanent lung damage.
How Can I Avoid Feather Duvet Lung Disease?
The best thing you can do to avoid developing this life-threatening disease is to choose down-free bedding. If you already have feather-filled bedding, you can easily swap it out for vegan options—and see your doctor if you think you might have feather duvet lung disease.
Thankfully, there are countless options on the market that are made from high-quality, animal-friendly materials. Our guides to vegan bedding, pillows, jackets, and sleeping bags will help you find the right product. Here are some picks to get you started on your search:
Make your home more animal-friendly by always choosing vegan decor, and learn more about how you can spare animals’ lives by ordering a vegan starter kit:
Help save more birds by calling on Urban Outfitters brands to ditch down: