NEWS AND COMMENT, SHANGHAI, CHINA: You may have read about the super-strict lockdown in Shanghai because they have an increasing rate of infection of the Omicron variant of the Covid virus. It is leading to some desperate situations because the lockdown is strict.
And in this video, we see a couple in an apartment in Shanghai feeding the cats in the apartment above them because the owner of those cats has presumably been carted off into quarantine because they have Covid. And under these circumstances there are many pets left in apartments starving to death. There are rescue organisations which can sometimes help by getting into apartments and feeding the animals but I suspect that there are many pets who simply die of starvation and lack of water.
It also seems to me that the authorities in Shanghai don’t give a damn if pets are killed or die. They have been rounding up cats on the street and putting them into green plastic bags where they appear to have suffocated to death and if not, they are killed not long afterwards. This animal cruelty is an attempt to stop the spread of Covid by companion animals. It is barbaric and ridiculous because all the research indicates that there is very little risk from companion animals in transmitting Covid to owners.
And the reason why the Chinese authorities are so strict about Omicron, when in the UK we been living through it as if it doesn’t exist, is because (1) the Chinese are using their own Covid vaccine which is relatively ineffective compared to the vaccines in the West and (2) because the Chinese have a superstitious attitude towards medicine, the elderly Chinese have, in large numbers, failed to submit to a vaccination. This makes them vulnerable to getting Covid. And so, there is a much higher percentage of elderly people in China who are unvaccinated.
These two factors have resulted in strict lockdowns while the rest of the world has more or less decided that Covid is over. It is an indication of the failure of the Chinese authorities to manage Covid effectively.
And the hardship caused has been enormous because these lockdowns go for a long time and it prevents people earning a living and as mentioned above there seems to be a complete disdain for companion animals. To someone like me it is shocking and it illustrates a lack of compassion and sensitivity towards animal welfare.
Perhaps it shouldn’t surprise me because they have no general animal welfare laws in China. This is a massive hole in their legislation. It should be an embarrassment to China but they don’t seem to care.
And the superstition that I refer to above is a liking for Chinese Traditional Medicine (CTM) which is unsupported almost universally by scientific evidence. It is based upon superstition. And it is based upon the brutal exploitation of wild animals which are killed in huge numbers such as the pangolin and bats. This exposes the Chinese to zoonotic diseases which otherwise would not have been the case.
And finally, the Bengal tiger is poached in India, Bangladesh and other countries for its body parts to feed this despicable medicine which is so harmful to wildlife conservation. And it is this mentality which has put the Chinese in this pickle and ultimately which is behind what you see in this extraordinary video. This would not have happened in Europe or in America.