It's only been a couple of weeks since Copenhagen Zoo got into a media shitstorm for turning the young, healthy giraffe Marius into lion food, but now they're at it again. This time the aforementioned lions had to make way. The arrival of a new male meant that it was bye-bye time for a flock of four. All in all, one could argue that Denmark has a rather alternative view on animal rights. The Zoo's almost weekly kill of exotic animals and the fact you can't legally buy a Pitbull terrier makes it all the more weird that it's entirely legal to screw animals. Yep, you're allowed to have sex with animals.
In the last seven years, multiple attempts have been made in the Danish parliament, but no legislation has been approved. In large part due to the fact that none of the big parties want to ban animal sex. Only the right wing party Dansk Folkeparti have been vocal in their efforts to ban animal sex entirely.
”It's simply incredible that there hasn't yet been a majority vote in Christiansborg [The Danish Parliament] to ban sex with animals, when this inherently is about the abuse and violation of a defenseless animal,” said Dansk Folkeparti's, then animal rights spokesman, Marlene Harpsøe to Lokal Avisen in 2011. Whether people should be allowed to have sex with their animals or not is a debate that pops up in Denmark with the same regularity as midnight showings of ”Con Air”. But after a while, the debate always reaches a sort of stalemate, dies down and alas it's still within the law to have sex with man's best friend.
Even though animal sex is legal in Denmark, it's not exactly socially accepted behaviour to screw your dog. It does however, not take too long in front of the computer to find likeminded ”animal lovers”. The website Beast Forum is the largest of its kind, a sort of international social hub for those with an inclination towards animal sex. The site boasts an active Denmark board, who's primary raison d'etre seems to be people asking to borrow male dogs for sex. According to members of the forum, that we contacted through the site's private message system, the Danes moved to Beast Forum after the danish equivalent Dyresex.dk (Animalsex.dk) closed down. Presumabley after getting some, not entirely unsurprising, bad press. Dyresex.dk had a reputation in the Danish media as a matchmaking-site between people who wanted to make a quick buck renting out their animals for sex and people who were interested in paying for exactly these services.
In 2007, two journalists from the newspaper 24timer obtained access to an animal brothel in Jutland, the Western part of Denmark, claiming to be interested in a bit of "horseplay". They gained access to the community through Dyresex and filmed with a hidden camera as they were offered a horse for their sexual needs. Beast Forum seems to be working in the same way, though several of its members have been adamant that it's considered bad practice and is frowned upon to rent out your animal for sex.
Animal rights groups have warned that Denmark is becoming a destination for animal sex tourism, a sort of Pattaya beach for the inbred, but so far it hasn't happened yet. Websites condemning the politicians and the practitioners of animal sex, have started popping up. One such is the website Zoofili.dk, whose web design makes one reminisce of Netscape and 56k modems. The guy behind the website is furious and demands that humans and animals stop having sex immediately. To make the law makers feel the heat, he has dedicated a large portion of his site to homemade drawings of politicians getting it on with a myriad of wildlife.
Wanting to know a little more about all of this, we caught up with Beast Forum user Michael (not necessarily his real name), a 29-year-old man from the Funen-area of Denmark. He's been into animal sex for more than ten years and kindly agreed to a Skype meeting with us.
**VICE: How did you realise that sex with animals turned you on? **
Michael: It started when I was 14-15 years old. I grew up in the countryside so I'd often seen animals mating and that made me curious.
You don't say. When did you have your first sexual experience with an animal?
A couple of years ago. I had talked about animal sex with a female friend and she got curious about it. She had her own dog and one day she let the dog take her. The next day, she told me about it and we went to her place and I got to watch the event. And later I tried it myself. The dog looked interested in me, so I let it take me.
**What is it about animals that turns you on? **
It's difficult to explain..They are more honest and, well, more animal like. If a dog likes you there is no doubt about it. Contrary to what people think, an animal can easily say no, if it doesn't want to have sex with you. I guess some animals are just beautiful and lovely to be with.
**What species turn you on? **
Mostly dogs, horses a bit as well. And in dogs, specifically Colliers, Labradors and German Shepherds. Beautiful dogs. Most of my experiences have been with dogs, but I also caressed a mare once.
**How often do you practice sex with animals? **
Probably two or three times a month. Sometimes more, sometimes less. I own a wonderful big male dog with my wife. But it varies.
Does your wife know that you have sex with the dog?
**What does she make of that then? **
Well, after she learned more about it, she is interested in it herself.
**Does your wife have sex with the dog? **
Once in while, yes.
**Are there feelings involved or is it just sex? **
Well, within the culture, we differentiate zoos (from zoophile) and beasts. Zoos love their animals, not the same way I love my wife, but it's love nonetheless. Beasts force themselves on the animal, they are the ones giving animal sex a bad name. I am a zoo. Probably 95 percent of the people who have sex with animals do it for more than just the sex.
Dare I ask how you go about intercourse with your dog? He's male right?
He started it himself when he was younger. I was getting a DVD from the machine and that was all he needed. That is when he took me the first time. Later he has learned when it's OK and when it's not, judging by mine and my wife's body language. The sex is like this: I'm naked and on all four. If he wants to go, he'll jump up and take me. If not, he'll go get a toy, I'll put my clothes back on and we'll go into the garden and play normal with each other.
Is there any danger of contracting STD's when you have sex with animals?
Yes. That's one of the reasons that I don't borrow my dog out to other people. Also, it would feel wrong, he's part of the family. But the sex that me and my wife have with him is unprotected. There's a lot of stuff in condoms that's unhealthy for the dog, so you need to be really careful.
Is it hard hiding your sexual preferences in your daily life?
Not at all. It's easy to hide. If we have guests over who don't know I'm a zoo, all they see is a guy who loves animals. But I'm very open about it. Most of my friends know about it. It's actually pretty common, I bet you know some zoo's without realizing it.
**Animal rights groups have been warning that Denmark is becoming a destination for animal sex tourism. Have you seen anything to support that? **
No, far from it. The community does not approve of animal sex tourism. If people come to Denmark with the sole purpose of having sex with animals, they'll be sorely disappointed.
What about animal brothels? There's been plenty of media hype about them in Denmark.
In my 11 years in the animal sex community I have never seen one, or even heard of one. If one opened, you can bet yourself that most zoo's would be against it. Animal's need to have the chance to say no to sex. I can't tell you that they don't exist. There's about six million people in this country, so you can probably find someone doing this, but you are going to have to look for a long time.
**If animal brothels don't exist, how does one go about finding an animal for sex? **
Well I waited for eight years. Maybe you're lucky and find somebody with a dog that wants to have sex with strangers. Otherwise you can buy your own, though you shouldn't buy a dog just so you can have sex with it. Or start with animal dildos. Before my first experience, I started with a couple of dog dildos.
**The law in Denmark allows animal sex, as long as the animal doesn't suffer from it. What's your view on that? **
I think the law is perfect the way it is. If animal sex is made illegal - it's only people like me, who love their dogs, that are going to get punished. People who abuse their animals aren't going to stop. But people like me could have our lives ruined. And if you're doubtful that animals enjoy sex with humans, you haven't seen it in real life. There is no doubt in my mind that my dog looks forward to have sex with me and enjoys it every single time.
Wow. Good luck with that Michael.