İrem GÖL -TDO- The Chinese government has signalled an end to the human consumption of dogs, with the agriculture ministry today releasing a draft policy that would forbid canine meat. Citing the “progress of human civilization” as well as growing public concern over animal welfare and prevention of disease transmission from animals to humans, China’s Ministry of Agricultural and Rural Affairs singled out canines as forbidden in a draft “white list” of animals allowed to be raised for meat.
The ministry called dogs a “special companion animal” and one not internationally recognised as livestock. The city of Shenzhen recently approved the first ever mainland China ban on consumption of dog and cat meat, a move that has given hope to animal welfare groups worldwide that other parts of the country could soon follow suit.
International head of the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, Paul Littlefair said: “The signal is the first ever from a ministry that dogs are not food animals. This leaves the door open for local governments to follow Shenzhen’s lead.”