Dog Breeder in Court, Expert Flown In
By Nick Lough
Shameful Slaughter of Cats Protest
By GILLIAN WONG, Associated Press Writer AP - Friday, December 19, 2008
BEIJING - A southern Chinese province must stop the “shameful” and “cruel slaughter” of cats for food, a group of more than 40 animal lovers in Beijing said Thursday as they unfurled banners in a tearful protest.
Thousands of cats across the country have been caught in the past week by traders and transported to Guangdong province to be killed for food, said the protesters gathered at the Guangdong government’s office in Beijing.
“We are very angry because the cats are being skinned and then cooked alive. We must make them correct this uncivilized behavior,” said Wang Hongyao, who represented the group in submitting a letter to the Guangdong office.
The protesters urged the provincial government to crack down on cat traders and restaurants that serve cat meat, although no law says it is illegal to eat cats. It has long been common for cats and dogs to be eaten in some parts of China and in some other Asian countries.
The demonstrators held up banners saying “Cooking cats alive! Shame on Guangdong!” and “Resolutely oppose cruel slaughter” as they met with a representative of the Guangdong office.
Calls to the Guangdong provincial office in Beijing rang unanswered, while the government news office in the province refused to comment.
The protest was apparently in response to Chinese media reports in recent days that carried pictures of furry felines peering out through bamboo crates and metal cages, apparently en route to Guangzhou, Guangdong’s capital. Other pictures show cats being skinned in restaurant kitchens.
About 5,000 cats were sent from Nanjing to Guangzhou, while cats from Shanghai, Hangzhou and other places were also being rounded up, the Chengdu Business Daily reported last week. The paper said people in
Guangdong eat 10,000 cats a day.
No reason was given for the increased media coverage, or if there has been an increase in cat meat consumption.
Many of the protesters in Beijing were retirees who said they have been caring for strays cats. The protesters said they believed that some street cats in Beijing, “especially the fat ones,” have disappeared and were likely nabbed by cat meat dealers.
“These cats, they are like our children,” said Cui Qingzhen, a 56-year-old woman who said she has been feeding street cats for six years. “We can’t let these people do this to them.”
The demonstrators also noted that a virus that causes severe acute respiratory syndrome, SARS, is suspected to have been spread to humans by civet cats, mongoose-like animals considered a delicacy in southern China.
SARS was first reported in Guangdong in November 2002 and killed 774 people worldwide before subsiding in July 2003. In 2004, Guangdong banned the raising, selling, killing and eating of civet cats.
“Haven’t they learned from SARS that some animals just shouldn’t be eaten by humans?” Cui said. “Ask the Guangdong people: What else must they eat?”
Associated Press researcher Xi Yue contributed to the report.
Please note that although I am thankful that the senseless killing and slaughter of cats has caught Chinese media attention it is sad to note that only 40 Chinese people were present at the protest. If this were happening in America the number would be into the multiple of thousands. However, it is a start.
Even sadder is the inability of the Chinese people to comprehend that there are other sources for cheap protein, many of which are easy to obtain and raise such as farm-raised fish, poultry, and milk products produced from goats and cows. Not to mention vegetable proteins such as beans and rice.
A government program to encourage the spaying and neutering of cats and dogs would help keep the overpopulation of these animals at a minimum. Humane methods of euthanasia can be employed. And a national program to vaccinate dogs and cats against rabies would help the overall health of the Chinese people and its pets.
Starving Horses Owned by Vets!
The Surrey SPCA was called in to deal with a dead horse on December 8, 2008. The emaciated animal collapsed after being forced to pull a car from a ditch. More shocking still was the discovery of five more horses in varying degrees of starvation inside the barn. Yet, the Langley, British Columbia farm (where the horses were housed) was hiding an even more sinister fact: it was the home of two veterinarians, Mark Morohn and Carol Schoyen.
Animal Protection Officer, Shawn Eccles, remarked on the preposterous notion that anyone in their right mind frame would use an animal in this condition to pull a vehicle out of ditch, “That’s outrageous … to take a look at the animal itself they believe that animal has the health to do this. I’m stunned. Stunned.
British Columbia CTV News discovered that the veterinarian’s practice has changed ownership. When asked to comment on this situation Dr. Jeff Grognet, President of the BC Veterinary Medical Association stated, “Veterinarians, in my mind, would be held at a higher standard of care. They can pull a license pending the investigation. In our situation, we have to investigate and reach a conclusion before we can look at suspending a license.”
In the meantime these unfortunate horses have a hope for a brighter and healthier future. The public support and offers for foster homes have been pouring in. And it is obvious that these noble thoroughbreds have captured the hearts of shelter works and the public.
Click here to sign the online petition to have Mark Morohn’s and Carol Schoyen’s license to practice veterinary medicine revoked.
The video of the downed horse forced to pull an automobile out of a ditch by its owners can be viewed below. The horse was in such a severe state of starvation and weakness it had to be euthanized.