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The Swedish Swan Lady: reaction to an apparent animal hoarding case

By I. Svanberg, A. Arluke

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This study describes media and judicial reaction to the first publicly acknowledged case of animal hoarding in Sweden-a 60-year-old Swedish woman who purportedly "rescued" 150 swans over several years by bringing many back to her one-room apartment. Reports in the press and social media reflected curiosity if not admiration for this woman, who was dubbed the "Swan Lady." Although some condemned her deeds and saw her as guilty of animal cruelty, most commentators were more fascinated by her ability to capture the aggressive and large birds, and bring them to her home. While judicial reaction framed this case as one of animal cruelty, the response was sympathetic and people failed to consider the Swan Lady's mental health when examining her behavior.

Publication Title Society & Animals
Volume 24
Issue 1
Pages 63-77
ISBN/ISSN 1063-1119
DOI 10.1163/15685306-12341388
Language English
Author Address Uppsala Centre for Russian and Eurasian Studies, Uppsala University, Uppsala,
Cite this work

Researchers should cite this work as follows:

  1. Abnormal behavior
  2. Animals
  3. Animal welfare
  4. Attitudes
  5. Birds
  6. Countries
  7. Developed countries
  8. Europe
  9. Mental health and well-being
  10. OECD countries
  11. peer-reviewed
  12. regulations
  13. Scandinavia
  14. Sweden
  15. vertebrates
  16. Wild animals
  1. peer-reviewed