Taiwan’s legislature has banned the dog and cat meat trade, earning applause from Humane Society International (HSI). Taiwan becomes the second territory in the Greater China Region to ban dog meat consumption. Hong Kong banned dog meat consumption in 1950, the first in Asia to ban the eating habit.
Kelly O’Meara, director of companion animals and engagement for HSI, said: “Taiwan’s legislature has taken a monumental step in ending the dog meat trade. This legislation is going to send a message to the Chinese mainland, Nagaland state in India, Indonesia and other Asian countries where dog meat consumption is still legal that ending the brutal dog meat trade is the positive trend across Asia and a step in the public’s long-term interest. Most people in Asian countries do not eat dog and cat, and most find the cruel and often crime-fueled trade appalling. The animal protection movement is growing rapidly across Asia and the calls for an end to dog meat cruelty are getting louder and louder.”
HSI is one of the leading organizations campaigning across Asia to end the dog meat trade that sees around 30 million dogs a year killed for human consumption. It’s a trade that subjects dogs to horrifying treatment and raises serious human health concerns for traders and consumers alike, all for a type of meat that relatively few people eat on a regular basis. Similar problems face an unknown number of cats.
Taiwan’s 1998 Animal Protection Act indirectly banned dog meat consumption by outlawing killing dogs and hurting dogs. Thailand, Hong Kong andthe Philippines also have dog meat bans in place.
- In China, HSI works alongside Chinese groups to rescue dogs from trucks bound for the dog meat markets, uncover the immense cruelty that takes place at the slaughterhouses, and draw attention to the plight of the animals.
- In South Korea, thousands of dog farms throughout the country rear an estimated 2.5 million dogs each year for human consumption. HSI has worked with seven farmers since 2015 to shut down their farms and rescue 825 dogs. By helping farmers transition into humane trades, HSI is demonstrating that a government-led dog meat farm phase out is possible and desired by many farmers in the industry.