Saturday, January 14, 2012

Dog for Dinner?

Recently, Thai authorities have rescued 750 dogs that were going to be smuggled over to Vietnam to end up on someone's dinner plate.  In certain parts of Vietnam, dog meat is considered to be a delicacy.  Are you appalled and disgusted?  Many Americans have dogs as pets, and those pet owners know just how loving and loyal dogs can be.  Even small children develop strong bonds with their pet dogs, and they can also describe their dog's emotions.  We know when our dog is happy to see us or when he/she gets upset with us and tears something up.  Can you imagine eating your dog for dinner?

In the United States, this practice is taboo.  Now, imagine continually breeding dogs, sorting through the puppies to see which ones will grow properly and which ones we should dispose of.  The ones we don't want, we gas, suffocate, burn, bury alive, or grind.  The ones we keep, we put into a large warehouse that is overcrowded, and the ammonia in the air makes it hard to breathe.  We put them into pens where they can't move around at all.  We feed them some mixture of corn with antibiotics and hormones...something that they are not truly meant to consume, but will fatten them up, make them grow faster and larger, and keep them healthy enough because there is so much disease.  We castrate, brand, and mutilate them with no painkillers whatsoever, as long as it's convenient and cheap.  They live their entire, shortened, life this way.  They get sores and broken bones from growing too fast and rubbing on their pen because they can't expend any energy.  They receive no veterinary care because it's too expensive.  If they are females used for breeding, they can't bond with their puppies and their puppies are taken away from them.  These animals are abused by the workers, whether it's killing the lame dogs inhumanely, injuring the dogs for sport, or trying to transport so many at one time.  When it comes time to go to the slaughterhouse, they're shoved onto semi-trailers.  They're crammed, denied food and water for days, they could be suffering from heat exhaustion if it's summer or freeze to the trailer if it's winter.  They arrive at the slaughterhouse and are taken through an assembly line, being electrocuted or having a bar shot through their head either to, hopefully, make them unconscious or just paralyze them.  Then, they will have their necks cut open and the rest of their bodies dismantled...several conscious when their necks are cut and some, even still, when they have the rest of their bodies cut off.  All of this occurring so they can, ultimately, end up on your plate for a few dollars.

I would hope you would not allow something so horrible to happen to your dog...that you would be moved to speak up and fight against such barbarity.  If you feel this way, then try to expand your mind and broaden this to the rest of the animals.  What I described is not an extreme and it's not the exception.  It IS the RULE and it's called factory farming.  Factory farming is what gives you your 99 cent eggs at the grocery store, your $3 cheeseburger at the local fast food joint, and your barbecued pork at the restaurant down the street.  It happens to all of the animals we mass-produce.  Where is your empathy when it comes to the cows, chickens, turkeys and pigs?  Don't let the disconnect fool you.  Bacon comes from an animal who is quite intelligent.  Pigs have the mental capacity of a 3-year-old, they play games and they even snuggle up to one another when they sleep.  Know that you can feel great about yourself every time you choose not to buy an animal product...that you are not supporting this cruel enslavement. 

1 comment:

  1. This is an ever-important, and ongoing, discussion in the overall discourse of animal farming. There is no different between dogs and the other animals you mention in this article, except the way we bred them and their subsequent domestication. The barbarity is universal. We just needed dogs for hunting and other activities that benefit us, which is probably the one thing that saves them from being a food commodity.

    You should post the articles to these stories, I'd love to read them.