With Taiwan banning the consumption back in April, slaughter and selling of dogs for their meat, many are hoping that the trend will spread to countries like China and South Korea.
The country is the first in Asia to introduce new laws in order to make it illegal for its citizens from consuming dog meat, with strict penalties such as hefty fines implemented in an effort to stamp out the market.
Taiwan will now subject offenders to the Animal Protection Act, where they can be fined up to £6,500 for eating dog meat, and £52,000 for those committed of slaughter and animal cruelty.
They have also doubled-up prison sentences for those slaughtering dogs to sell their meat on an underground market, with jail sentences now lasting up to two years, or even five for repeat offenders.
The newly-introduced laws also make it illegal to walk an animal whilst under the control of a motorised vehicle, such as a scooter or car.
The Asian country’s president Tsai Ing-wen, a renowned animal lover, owns two cats who she is frequently photographed with in her political campaigns. She also adopted three dogs just last year.
Although dog meat is not hugely popular as a meal across the continent, some regional cuisines are said to still consume it as a delicacy – however most citizens now realise that the animal is of more use as a pet.
However, one of the world’s most disreputable dog meat festivals has sparked outrage and motivated many fight it’s cause. China’s highly-notorious ‘Lychee and Dog Meat Festival’, held in June in the country’s south, kills over 10,000 days for consumption.
The annual event has caused millions of people to sign a petition with change.org, to stop the festival in a wider effort to crack down and re-educate Asian countries on the slaughter, selling and consumption of the animal.
Though the festival would indicate that dog meat is a deep-routed problem within Chinese culture, the country itself only consumes a small portion of the 30 million dogs eaten annually in Asia.
In a 2015 Animals Asia Study, less than 25% of citizens from Beijing and Shanghai had eaten dog meat in the last two years. That’s less than a quarter in two of the country’s most major cities.
South Korea showed similar traits, with the younger generation even more in favour of other meat sources. However, there is still an underlying issue, and if they are to hold a successful Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, Korea must become tougher on the industry.
Taiwan has joined Hong Kong as one of the continent’s countries to ban the slaughter and distribution of dog meat, although to this day the centuries-old tradition is still legal in East Asian countries such as The Philippines, China and South Korea.
The newly implemented laws will certainly put pressure on Asia’s fellow countries to re-think their views on the dog meat industry, with activists in China and South Korea hoping their government will follow suit.