After Shenzhen’s historic decision to ban the dog and cat meat trade, as well as China’s Ministry of Agriculture’s declaration that dogs and cats are “companion animals who are not for eating”, campaigners for the end of the dog meat trade in China are thrilled by the news the city of Zhuai, in Guangdong province, has followed Shenzhen’s example.
Zhuhai has now become the second city in mainland China to ban the consumption of dog and cat meat, as well as that of wildlife, in what campaigners at animal charity Humane Society International (HSI) hope will be the start of a “domino effect” across China.
The Standing Committee of the People’s Congress of Zhuhai Municipality stated that lawmakers must adhere to China’s newest livestock “white list” of animals for human consumption, from which dogs and cats are absent. Other cities in mainland China are believed to be considering bans.
HSI’s Wendy Higgins welcomed the Zhuhai ban, saying, “Zhuhai’s ban on dog and cat meat eating is thrilling news for all those in China and around the world who have campaigned for so long to end this brutal trade.
“Coming so soon after Shenzhen’s ban and the government’s historic statement classifying dogs as pets, we hope this is the start of a domino effect of progressive legislation across China with other cities following suit.
“With so many millions of dogs and cats falling victim to the meat trade, it’s easy to lose sight of the fact that most people in China don’t eat dogs and cats, and that for years there has been enormous public support in China for an end to the cruelty. So now it would seem that in the absence of a national ban, cities are taking matters into their own hands and reflecting the mood of the people.
“This isn’t just good news for animal protection, it’s also very good news for public health because the dog meat trade poses a significant human health risk, linked to the spread of trichinellosis, cholera and rabies.
“Rabies has been found in dogs traded for human consumption in China, Vietnam and Indonesia, and is easily spread as thousands of dogs are crammed on slaughter trucks and driven across provincial borders to markets and slaughterhouses.”
Images by HSI.