Now, in what could be an historic step forward for animal welfare, the Chinese Ministry of Agriculture has issued draft guidelines declaring that dogs are pets, not to be eaten.
The guidelines specifically provide that dogs are not to be considered livestock that can be bred to provide food, milk, or fur. The Agriculture Ministry stated: “As far as dogs are concerned, along with the progress of human civilization and the public concern and love for animal protection, dogs have been ‘specialized’ to become companion animals…
Dogs are generally not regarded as livestock and poultry around the world, and China should also not manage them as livestock and poultry.”
The draft guidelines are open for public comment until May 8. There is opposition from those involved in the dog meat trade.
Ten to twenty million dogs are brutally tortured, killed, and eaten each year in China. The dogs are kept in cramped, rusty cages stacked on top of each other. Many of the dogs are stolen pets. They are slaughtered in brutal ways such as hanging, electrocution, beating with sticks, blowtorching, or being boiled alive, due to an erroneous belief that high adrenaline levels will produce tender meat and increase the supposed health benefits of consuming dog. Dogs are often tortured and killed in front of other dogs who are awaiting their deaths.
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