Vietnamese government wants to phase out cat and dog meat

The National Assembly of Vietnam is the highest government organisation and the highest-level representative body of the people of Vietnam and the excellent news from The Phuket News of Sunday, July 16, 2023, is that this body wants to “tackle [the] dog and cat meat trade”.

It’s a rather vague headline. I would rather see a headline which stated that the Vietnamese government wanted to get rid of the cat and dog meat trade in their country but at least they’re going to tackle it which means they are going to gradually, hopefully, get rid of it.

Cat meat trade Vietnam is cruel and it gives Vietnam a bad image
Cat meat trade Vietnam is cruel and it gives Vietnam a bad image. Picture: MikeB

A meeting was arranged by the Soi Dog Foundation International which, as I understand it, is a major animal welfare charity in the area. They brought together 50 parliamentarians, government officials and specialists from across Vietnam to “tackle the serious and urgent issue”. Good news for all animal advocates.

And the reason why they want to tackle this serious issue is:

  • Two improve human health! Diseases can jump from animals to people such as rabies and eating large quantities of cats and dogs can facilitate this transmission of disease. The Covid pandemic highlighted the issues and focused minds, I think.
  • To improve animal welfare in the country and
  • Two improve the public profile of the country internationally. This is an interesting development. It appears that people like me are putting pressure on Vietnam to get rid of cat and dog meat because they are concerned about the country’s image internationally.

Although unsaid there is the risk that the extensive Asian cat and dog meat trade in which millions of animals are killed annually might start another pandemic.

The top two points in the list above are obvious. The bottom point, less so. And it is extremely pleasing to me to see it. It means that the Vietnamese government is concerned about how the rest of the world perceives their country. They want the world to perceive them as being civilised! We do indeed! Bring it on as fast as possible please.

They might start the cleanup by making Hanoi, the capital, a cat and dog meat free zone because they want the world to perceive that city as a “civilised and dynamic city”. I love that.

The problem appears to be enforcement. It appears to me that they have wanted to get rid of the cat and dog meat market for a while but simply don’t have the means to achieve their objectives.

Nyugen Tuan Anh, Vice Chairman of Board of the Deputy Affairs said: “Dog and cat meat trade and consumption are increasingly burning issues. Animal welfare has been [part] of the National Assembly’s supervisory sector. Vietnam has a comprehensive legal framework on the issue, but enforcement is the major loophole. This must be enhanced at all levels in the short term.”

Rabies still kills approximately 70 people in Vietnam each year. That’s the kind of point they are making regarding concerns for human health as well as animal welfare. The article states that an estimated 5 million dogs and 1 million cats are “brutally killed for meat per year in Vietnam”.

It could be argued that Vietnam are coming around to the idea of adopting Western values. That might not be desirable for some. I say this because people who defend the cat and dog meat trade say that it is no different to any other livestock. Why does the West object to the trade? Some people say it’s unfair to object to it. But it isn’t. It is very fair to object to it because it is unregulated. The animals are killed brutally. And above all else dogs and cats are often people’s pets and therefore they are not livestock. The relationship between dogs and cats and people is one of companion animal to human. That is not a farm scenario! It is not about livestock being raised to be eaten by people. Dogs and cats exist to keep people company. That message seems to be getting through at last.

Leave a Comment

Two useful tags. Click either to see the articles: Speciesism - 'them and us' | Cruelty - always shameful
follow it link and logo

Note: sources for news articles are carefully selected but the news is often not independently verified.

At heart this site is about ANTHROPOCENTRISM meaning a human-centric world.

Post Category: Dogs > abuse