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article imageOp-Ed: Some Swiss farmers have a taste for cat and dog meat

By Ken Hanly     Jan 2, 2013 in Food
Berne - The practice of eating dogs and cats is usually associated with countries in the Far East such as China, Korea, and Vietnam. However, farmers in some areas of Switzerland apparently also eat dogs and cats according to the newspaper Tages Anzeiger.
The paper said farmers in the Appenzell and St. Gallen areas in particular slaughter cats and dogs to eat them or to give to friends.
Apparently the favorite and best meat comes from a dog breed related to the Rottweiler. A farmer told the paper: ‘There’s nothing odd about it. Meat is meat. Construction workers in particular like eating it.’
Another farmer claimed he raised animals and then had a friend who was a butcher come in to kill them when they were ready for slaughter.
People reportedly often eat the meat as 'mostbröckli' which is usually made from beef or ham that is marinated. When you prepare dog meat in this fashion, no-one knows, a farmer said. In nearby Germany the eating of dog meat is forbidden but not in Switzerland. However someone could be convicted for inhumane slaughter of the animals.
Of course there are no statistics as to the number of dogs and cats slaughtered every year in Switzerland to be eaten. There is social disapproval of the practice, as is evident in the appended video. The practice is carried on mostly in secret, although as the video shows, a little investigation will reveal that it indeed happens.
No commercial abattoirs slaughter dogs or cats. Whereas the practice of eating dogs and cats horrifies many animal lovers, in China, South Korea, and Vietnam it is believed to bring good luck. Koreans even have a special breed of dog that is raised for meat and rarely kept as a pet.
No doubt much of the negative reaction to eating cats and dogs is related to the fact that they are usually kept as pets in western societies. The same negative reaction is found with respect to horse meat. Many people also baulk at eating rabbits since they are regarded as cute, no doubt. Attitudes to eating animals seems to depend upon the relations we humans have with them and this varies with different cultures. Religious doctrines may also influence views as to what animals should be eaten. A minority in many cultures also believe that it is wrong to kill any animals for food and that we should be vegetarians. Meat eaters however distinguish between different animals as sources of food, a fact that led at least one farmer who ate dogs to call meat eaters who disapproved of him as hypocrites.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of DigitalJournal.com
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