Earlier this year, Bieber bought the two Savannah cats — which are part domestic and part African Serval — for a whopping $35,000. And while it's clear from his regular photo dumps and their joint Instagram account that he adores his fur babies, the animal rights organization argued against his decision to purchase the specially-bred cats in the first place.
In a recent chat with People, PETA senior vice president Lisa Lange told the publication that Bieber doesn't care about the "animal overpopulation crisis."
"Justin Bieber could inspire his fans around the world to save a life adopting a cat from a local animal shelter," Lange said. "Rather than fueling the dangerous demand for hybrid cats, contributing to the animal overpopulation crisis, and proving that when it comes to helping animals, his stance so far is 'I don't care.'"
However, Bieber didn't take too kindly to the criticism and hit back at the organization via his Instagram stories, writing "PETA can suck it," alongside a screenshot of the article.
"PETA can go focus on real problems. Like poaching, and animal brutality. Ur tripping because I want a specific kind of cat? U weren't tripping when I got my dog Oscar and he wasn't a rescue.. every pet we get must be a rescue?" Bieber said. "I believe in adopting rescues but also think there are preferences and that's what breeders are for."
He then went on to tell PETA to "go help with all of the plastic in the ocean, and leave my beautiful cats alone."
That said, PETA has since responded to Bieber via a statement sent to Billboard, in which they implore him to "be a great role model on this issue" and "spend just one hour in a municipal animal shelter with us."
"Sorry, Justin, but you must think more deeply about this issue," they said. "When millions of animals are losing their lives every year because not enough people adopt—choosing instead to shop—the animal overpopulation crisis is a 'real problem.' That's what 'sucks.'"