By Todd Peterson
Updated November 25, 2002 12:00 PM

The fur is flying over the new fashion line by romance-novel beefcake Fabio.

Reuters reports that the long-haired Italian model and former “I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter” spokesman was upset that coats from the “Fabio Collection,” his line of woman’s apparel, used real fur instead of the fake stuff.

The clothing line was reportedly destined for Sam’s Club retail stores, and the fur violated Fabio’s longstanding support of animal rights. The hunky Harlequin prototype is a passionate supporter of the group People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, and his voice was used in PETA’s “Fur-Away” campaign a few years ago.

“Fabio is devastated that a few of his coats have real fur and has asked (Sam’s Club) to either withdraw them or use faux fur,” a PETA spokeswoman tells Reuters.

But Eric Ashenberg, Fabio’s manager, insists the incident was blown out of proportion.

“There’s no flap,” Ashenberg says, adding that the clothing line was just in development and Fabio was simply correcting the details. “Based on Fabio’s feelings, the collection will have no fur,” Ashenberg adds.