Campaigners call for ban on dog meat, claim practice is on the rise across Europe
World Dog Alliance (WDA), an international canine welfare group, is going to launch a campaign in the UK later this year for a full ban on the consumption of dog meat
Animal welfare campaigners have called on Prime Minister Theresa May to ban the consumption of dog meat in Britain after they claim that the vile practice is on the rise across Europe. The World Dog Alliance (WDA), an international canine welfare group, is going to launch a campaign in the UK later this year for a full ban on the consumption of dog meat. Even though the habit of eating dogs is seen as a disgusting practice in many countries around the world, killing canines and consuming their meat is legal in Britain. The WDA, which has its headquarters in Hong Kong, believes that the immigration of people from the Far East countries is spreading the habit of eating dogs across Europe.
The Daily Mail reported that in the US, a total ban on importing, trading, and consuming canine meat is going to be put into effect by Congress and the movement, which was promoted heavily by the WDA, has won the backing of major MPs in Britain.
The organization said in a statement: "The UK is the first country in the world which enacts the Animal Welfare Act. It is unfortunate to see dog meat consumption being legal in this nation."
"The WDA believes a legal ban on eating dog meat would allow the UK to continue to have a global leading role in the field of animal protection, especially after UK leaves the EU. Local citizens in the Western countries barely eat dog meat, but the WDA worries that dog meat consumption may be spread to UK with immigration. In the US, people who eat dog meat are mainly immigrants from Asia."
Officials at 10 Downing Street said they are looking into the decision being made by the US Congress but refrained from saying whether they would support the ban or not.
A spokesperson for May told a media briefing in Westminster: "The commercial trade in dog meat in the UK is illegal, but we will look closely at the decision taken in the US. Britain is a nation of animal lovers and we continue to have some of the highest animal welfare standards in the world. We wish to maintain that."
Foreign Office minister Sir Alan Duncan, who owns a prize-winning cockapoo called Noodle, has also stressed that the prime minister has to look into the issue. The Sun reported that he called a full ban on the practice "absolutely right" on August 5. He said: "There is no need in the modern world for this disgusting habit. We should nip it in the bud now to make sure the practice never takes off here. A civilised country is decent to animals, so let's be fully decent here."
MP Lisa Cameron, the chairperson of the all-party Parliamentary Dog Advisory Welfare Group, is one of the major figures supporting the total ban on canine meat consumption. She said: "We are urging the Government to bring in a ban. We are concerned by the World Dog Alliances' report about dog food consumption in the UK. We want to send out a strong message that people don't want to see it here in the UK."
The Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animal (RSPCA), on the other hand, has rejected the claim that canine meat consumption is on the rise in Europe, saying existing legislation in the Animal Welfare Act of 2006 prevents the practice. In a statement the organization said: "It is illegal to sell dog meat to the public in the UK. There are also no abattoirs that have a licence to kill dogs and it would be against slaughter and animal welfare legislation too."
"So, while dog meat eating is not specifically banned here these laws mean that there is effectively a ban on the practice. The RSPCA has no evidence that dog meat eating is on the rise in the UK, nor have we ever received any reports on this issue. While we do not believe it happens here, we continue to monitor the situation."
An estimate of 30 million dogs are killed every year to be consumed across China, the Philippines, Indonesia, Thailand, Laos, Vietnam, and Cambodia. Most of the animals are taken right off the street. Canine meat, in these countries, is considered a delicacy as well as a health tonic. Aside from the two superpower countries, the WDA has been pressurizing Asian countries to ban the consumption of dog meat.