Beijing has asked hotels and restaurants in the city to take dog meat off the menu for the duration of next month's Olympics and September's Paralympics.
According to several international news reports, a directive from the Beijing Food Safety Office issued last month ordered Olympic contracted hotels not to provide any dishes made with dog meat. Concerned that canine dishes might offend animal rights groups and Western visitors, Beijing tourist officials said restaurants, expected to be popular among foreign visitors, must stop serving dog meat "to respect the dining customs of different countries." The Beijing News quoted the municipal food department as saying the decision has been made to "respect the habits of many countries and nationalities."
Alley Cat Rescue is hoping this ban also includes cat meat; which China also views as a delicacy and is found on restaurant menus. During the 1988 Seoul Olympics, South Korea banned dog meat by instating a law prohibiting the sale of "foods deemed unsightly." However, after the Olympics, the ban was not strictly enforced.
Along with China’s temporary menu changes, Beijing has also been rounding up cats and dogs to “cleanse” the city in preparation for the Olympics. Stray and feral cats and dogs are poisoned, trapped to be destroyed, or simply killed when demolition crews tear down old structures to build the new facilities. If China wants to project a sophisticated image during the Olympics, it must foster a culture of responsible guardianship, in keeping with the 21st century animal welfare standards.
Thank you, again, to those who signed ACR’s petitions expressing your disapproval with China’s actions. Your opinions have been sent to the International Olympic Committee and to the US Ambassador to China, Zhou Wenzhong.
For more information on how you can help, please visit www.thepetitionsite.com/1/stop-the-beijing-olympics-cat-massacre?page=12