Is the world going to the dogs or are the poor dogs going the way of the world? The answer is up in the air, at least in Seoul, South Korea, where an appeal has been made to the central government to propose categorization of dogs as livestock in order to properly regulate the trade of dog meat and strengthen sanitation inspections.
The purpose of the proposal is to address the absence of regulations concerning the sale of dog meat, which is considered a delicacy in Korea. City officials claim that proper categorization of dogs as livestock will force things to improve.
“The real problem is, we cannot regulate the sanitation process of how dog meat is served due to the lack of regulations. We will have a series of public hearings to discuss the issue as it’s a necessary step,” said one official from the Seoul Metropolitan Government (SMG).
The way things are, dogs are considered the same as donkeys, rabbits, horses and deer; that is, not livestock such as beef and chicken. This permits mass breeding, butchering and serving of dog meat in restaurants, but does not allow authorities to apply the same regulations regarding livestock to dog meat.
Animal rights groups and dog lovers have loudly and openly criticized the treatment of dogs in South Korea. In 2001, a law was proposed to set up proper regulations concerning dog meat and its categorization as “livestock,” but it was scrapped due to pressure from animal rights protesters.
Dog meat is considered a natural product. Whatever this may indicate for a lack for better laws, this situation is not likely to change soon. For now, the way the laws are set up the authorities can only take a legal action against those who butcher dogs in a brutal way or cause pollution to the environment during the slaughter process.
Is the world going to the dogs?
What do you think?