(Image source from: WBNS-10TV Columbus)
The United States House of Representatives on Wednesday passed a legislation barring killing of cats and dogs for human consumption.
The Dog and Cat Meat Trade Prohibition Act, imposes a fine of USD 5,000 (more than Rs 3,50,000) for each violation. In the added resolution, the House has urged all countries as well as South Korea, China, and India to end the dog and cat meat trade.
"Dogs and cats are meant for companionship and recreation. Tragically, more than 10 million dogs are killed for human consumption every year in China," said Congresswoman Claudia Tenney.
"There is no place in our compassionate society for these practices. This bill is a reflection of America's values, and sends a strong message to all nations that we will not stand for this inhumane and cruel treatment," she said.
The resolution urges the governments of China, South Korea, Vietnam, Thailand, the Philippines, Indonesia, Cambodia, Laos, India, and all other nations to accept and apply laws prohibiting the dog and cat meat trade.
It likewise urges these countries to upsurge their efforts to stop any leather or fur byproducts of such trade from entering global markets and use their food safety commandments to crack down on the sale of cat and dog's meat.
The bill amends the Animal Welfare Act. It affirms the U.S. commitment to the protection of animals and to advancing the progress of animal protection around the world, she said.
In addition, the bill forbids people from knowingly transporting, possessing, buying, selling, or donating: a dog or cat to be slaughtered for human consumption, or dog or cat parts for human consumption, setting a maximum fine of USD 5,000 for violations.
"Over half the households in America have a dog or cat as part of their family. We should send a clear message that slaughtering these beloved animals for food is unacceptable and will be punished," Congressman Vern Buchanan said.
The animal welfare organization, the Animal Wellness Action (AWC) also welcomed the passage of the two legislations. "The dog meat trade - claiming 30 million lives a year - is the world's largest form of dog exploitation," said Marty Irby, AWC executive director at Animal Wellness Action.
The dog meat trade is widespread in South Korea, where meat traders slaughter and kill millions of dogs for the table after they are raised on thousands of "farms." In China, dog meat butchers gather up street dogs and kill them.
By Sowmya Sangam