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Should we be eating dogs in Britain?
Posted 28 February 2011
Animal Aid asks whether all animals should be treated equally.
In Korea and some other Asian countries dogs (and cats) are considered a good source of protein. Although UK residents are likely to be shocked at the thought, why is it considered wrong to eat dogs yet acceptable to eat cows, pigs, chickens and other animals? This is the question that national campaign group Animal Aid is asking during March, which is designated national Veggie Month.
Of course, rather than adding dog to the menu, during Veggie Month Animal Aid is urging the British public to recognise that pigs, sheep, cows and chickens are not so different from the dogs and cats who share our homes, and instead to try a meat-free diet. Animal Aid supporters will be communicating this thought-provoking message to the general public by distributing tens of thousands of the group’s ‘Friend or Food?’ leaflet, as well as setting up street stalls in different parts of the country. A large controversial poster, depicting a golden retriever lying in a grassy field, will be displayed on the stalls asking passers-by, ‘Would you eat dog for dinner? If the idea disgusts you, tell us why’.
When Animal Aid took a spoof dog meat trailer on the road last year, the response from the public was powerful. People right across the country were horrified at the thought of eating Dachshund burgers or Collie steaks, and many - for the first time - accepted the idea that eating pigs or sheep was just the same.
Says Veggie Month Co-ordinator Kelly Slade:
‘In the UK, we are brought up to believe that it is acceptable to use some animals for food, whilst others are loved as companions. Therefore, this Veggie Month, instead of pointing the finger at other nations’ food choices, we could all stop and question why we consume any animals at all. Animals bred to be eaten are capable of experiencing a range of emotions in the same way as the dogs and cats who share our homes, and they deserve just as much respect.’
National Veggie Month aims to promote the animal welfare, health and environmental benefits of a meat-free diet. It is supported by libraries, health food shops, Waterstones bookstores and schools across the country. As part of the initiative, Animal Aid has launched its third nationwide youth art and poetry competition, the theme of which poses the question to 11-16 year olds: Is it ethical to eat animals?
Notes to editors
- For more information on Veggie Month contact Kelly Slade on 01732 364546 ext. 227, (Kelly@animalaid.co.uk) (Out of hours: 07918 195238) or see the Veggie Month website.
- Vegetarians around the country are available for interview.
- We have an ISDN line for broadcast-quality interviews.
- The Friend or Food? leaflet can be viewed here.
- The dog for dinner poster can be viewed here.
- Animal Aid recently set up a spoof catering trailer in a number of UK farmers markets. The trailer offered, for human consumption, burgers and sausages made from dogs. Images can be viewed here.
- More information about the youth art and poetry competition can be viewed here.