Taiwan Is First Asian Nation to Ban Cat and Dog Meat
Dog meat is popular throughout Asia. While cat meat is not the same kind of delicacy, it is still consumed in most Asian nations. Vendors who continue to sell the meat will be subject to large fines. Repeated offenses involving the sale of cat and dog meat may even lead to prison time. This is the first country in Asia to ban these kinds of meat.
People who are found to torture or harm animals, such as cats and dogs, can be fined up to $2 million Taiwan dollars. They will also face prison sentences of up to two years. People who are found to repeatedly break these laws will face increased fines and prison sentences.
Dogs and cats are seen more as pets than food in Taiwan.
Before making it illegal across the country of Taiwan, various towns and cities had passed ordinances to ban the sale and consumption of these kinds of meat. The new law also makes it illegal to walk animals near high traffic areas. Taiwan is one of the first Asian countries to look at dogs more as pets than a food source, though dog meat is still considered to be a delicacy. Cat meat is not as popular.
The move to ban the sale and consumption of these kinds of meat comes after several high profile cases involving animal abuse. Animal rights activists claimed the people who abused the animals did not get harsh enough punishments for what they did.
“Taiwan’s progressive ban is part of a growing trend across Asia to end the brutal dog meat trade, and reflects the fact that a huge number of people in Asian countries do not in fact eat dog and cat and are appalled by the cruel and often crime-fuelled trade,” said Wendy Higgins of the Humane Society International. “Taiwan also sends a strong signal to countries such as China and South Korea where the dog meat trade remains and millions of dogs are killed by beating, hanging or electrocution for eating. It’s time for change, and bans like the one in Taiwan utterly dispel the myth that this is promoted by Western sentimentality. The animal protection movement is growing rapidly across Asia and the calls for an end to dog meat cruelty are getting louder and louder.”
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