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Could you cook and eat your pet?

August 18th, 2009
10:45 AM ET

Could you cook and eat your pet?
New Zealand animal lovers are up in arms over the news that an Aukland man, who hails from Tonga, killed and cooked his Staffordshire terrier with the intention of eating it

Under New Zealand's Animal Welfare Act, it is legal to kill and eat an animal if it is slaughtered swiftly and painlessly, but now local activists are demanding a change in the law.

Is this different to generations of farming families in Europe killing and eating their pet lambs, chickens or ponies? Are animal cruelty activists trying to end a barbaric practice, or interfering with specific cultural values?

Let us know your thoughts. Connect The World will report from New Zealand, explore the issue and use your feedback in the show.

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Filed under:  General
soundoff (79 Responses)
  1. LV

    It depends on the animal's capacity to suffer. I find that killing a pig is just as horrific as killing a cat or dog and am therefore a vegetarian.

    One could argue that killing their pet cat or dog is MORE humane, as long as the killing is done "swiftly and painlessly". The cat or dog probably led a happier life than a pig, cow or chicken crowded in a slaughterhouse, standing in their own feces.

    August 18, 2009 at 11:20 am | Reply
  2. lena

    Of course you shouldn't cook and eat your pets! As an animal lover and vegetarian the thought makes me feel physically ill. The cultural norm in New Zealand certainly does not support killing and eating household pets, and immigrants to NZ should adapt and respect those cultural norms. How does anyone know that the family killed their dog "humanely"? It is a truly barbaric practice and the authorities should have charged the man with cruelty to animals and fined him - at a minimum. We should respect the integrity of all living creatures. There are so many examples of animal cruelty out there - it is time to address that issue head on and not shy away from taking a stance.

    August 18, 2009 at 11:25 am | Reply
  3. Gordon

    Who will be the judge? Some people eat raw fish, others dog or sheeps testicles & monkey brains.
    If you see the way some in the west cremate a beef steak it seems fair!
    I think anything and everything is on the menu and if you don't want it then don't order it – simple.

    August 18, 2009 at 11:25 am | Reply
  4. Catfish

    When disgusting practices are conducted by people of European origine,it is considered something of a tradition that's supposed to be guarded lest it vanishes as a culture.
    It gets all the protectioin under the law and socially it is celebrated.
    What is wrong with eating a dog if it is a delicacy to someone?

    I personaly would not eat my pet up unless under circumstances that warrant me to do this for survival.

    Europeans ate rats and as recent as a few years ago,a German man ate up his friend.
    Another European,this time an Austrian fathered his daughteers children.
    HAHAHAHAHAHAHA.
    Funny Europeans.
    Stop making everything about about third world cultures a taboo.
    You know you have a multiplicity of taboos that should not even be named.

    August 18, 2009 at 11:38 am | Reply
  5. Hot Dog

    Most of us have eaten a Hot Dog every once in a while so what's the difference?

    August 18, 2009 at 11:41 am | Reply
  6. Jay

    There is little difference between most animals. If you are willing to eat a Cow or Pig, you should have no issue with eating Panda, they are animals. Only one looks cute. Again, a common fish and a whale, one is majestic, the other is common and uninteresting. A family dog is simply an inexpensive, alternative dinner. Why do meat eaters find this offensive? As a vegetarian I find it confusing. It's all the same, meat!

    August 18, 2009 at 11:43 am | Reply
  7. Subrata Datta

    My brother did. The story goes like this. When he was about eight , he had a pet Rhode Island Red Cock. Like .Mary's lamb , this cock followed him round everywhere
    Some guests dropped in one evening and stayed behind for dinner. The cock got roasted . My brother enjoyed his share . The next morning there was no cock . Everybody pretended ignorance till he fished out the feathers and then went into a sulk. But never a word about how it tasted.

    August 18, 2009 at 11:44 am | Reply
  8. Magda_Lupescu

    Well, as the Chinese say, animals are not your friends, you either put them to work, or you eat 'em. Personally, I would prefer to transfer my affection to human beings. Some people prefer household pets over humans. It's their right. Anyway, as long as Tongans don't resort to cannibalism, they're okay in my book.

    August 18, 2009 at 11:45 am | Reply
  9. Deepa Vijayan

    We do make the distinction between pets and livestock... when you raise an animal for its meat and what it can produce for you, it's different to what a pet is. The difference is in the emotional bond that you create with an animal... sure, a cow or horse can be eaten, but if you're able to connect with it emotionally, it would become a pet.

    If as humans we are able to bond successfully with other species, domesticate them, bring them into our worlds, and – more often than not – embrace them like our own family, they become our 'own', then they deserve to be treated as our 'own'.

    If an animal can be a fire safety officer, a police officer, a guide for the visually-impaired, a bomb-sniffer, and – most importantly – a better friend than many humans can be, the least the law can do is to afford it the same dignity as humans – the right not to be eaten.

    August 18, 2009 at 11:50 am | Reply
  10. Broos

    It all comes down to culture and people, in Thailand its quite normal to eat dog, for Ueropeans this would be disgusting, although for us it is quite normal to eat a cow and this again in India would be punished I'm quite sure.

    Animal acivists should stay out of this unless of course the animal is being killed and it's suffering .

    August 18, 2009 at 11:53 am | Reply
  11. S. Locklin

    Although strange this case may be, if the dog was kept humanely and killed quickly and in accordance with the law, it is difficult to argue the speciest argument. I do not think we are likely to see a sudden surge in cases of people eating their cats, birds or dogs, so this does not justify changing any laws in my opinion.

    August 18, 2009 at 11:55 am | Reply
  12. George Topouria

    It's all hypocritical. You either should be fine with eating any animal, or should abstain from eating any at all. I see no reason not to treat all animals equally, whether it's a terrier dog or a pet lamb.

    August 18, 2009 at 11:56 am | Reply
  13. Daniel

    I am an American and I live in South Korea. In this country, it is OK to eat dog. There are some times in the hot summer months when many Koreans believe eating dog dishes help deal with the heat. The dogs are raised like other animals such as cows, pigs, and chickens. Different cultures have different views and the line between what is right and wrong here is often very personal.

    August 18, 2009 at 11:59 am | Reply
  14. Sean

    People see certain animals and feel they are untouchable...personally I wouldn't entertain eating cat or dog meat but if that's another person's thing, once the slaughter is "humane" go for it... Vegetarians tend to believe eating all meat is wrong and I wouldn't want them telling me what to do - you don't hear us omnivores telling them they shouldn't eat vegetables. Live and let live...

    August 18, 2009 at 12:03 pm | Reply
  15. Craig

    Cat the other white meat

    just kidding, but it comes down to personal preferences

    August 18, 2009 at 12:17 pm | Reply
  16. Karen

    The whole thing is horrible. I think we all need to get real and stand up for something. Murder, child abuse, slavery, animal abuse (including slaughter houses), should all be recognized for what they are. Yet all the news does is report with great gusto on it and then desensitizes us from its true consequences.

    August 18, 2009 at 12:18 pm | Reply
  17. T. Nesbitt

    In my opinion the owner had every right to eat the dog. It was his pet he fed it sheltered it and if thats how he chose to reap his investment than so be it. The same people who would say this is inhumane have no problem eating a hamburger or chicken burger or fish, what makes these animals lives any less important. People hunt and fish for sport is this not inhumane? Just because dogs are beloved creatures in America's society does not mean they deserve more rights than other animals, in India cows are held as sacred creatures but we turn a blind eye to the amount of beef that gets consumed here.

    August 18, 2009 at 12:20 pm | Reply
  18. Paulo Rocha

    There's no difference, killing a cow or a dog. It's killing.

    Now comes the label "cultural". In the past, slavery was accepted. Was a "cultural" subject? Or, as usual, it's all about money?
    Is smoking a "cultural" matter?

    If you eat meat, you are able to eat your pet.

    In the future, people will look at this eat-meating times the same way we do about slavery.

    August 18, 2009 at 12:30 pm | Reply
  19. Andrea

    Humans are omnivorous by nature, i.e. our body is made to eat and needs both vegetables and meat. For hundreds of thousands of years, meat has been just a small fraction of our meals. We should respect this, and eat small quantities of meat. Picking up a packaged, cleaned and precooked chicked in a supermarket aisle has become all too normal. We should eat meat, but keep in mind that it is an animal that gave up its life for us.
    The distinction between a dog and a pig or any other animal, is just a matter of culture and mentality, and should not be judged easily.

    August 18, 2009 at 12:33 pm | Reply
  20. Karina Welna

    what we eat and why in Western Culture is tied closely to how we associate with it. Some animals we won't eat because they are seen as disgusting and 'dirty' e.g. rats, rodents, bugs etc. Others we don't eat because we see them as sort of psuedohumans, they share our lives intimately and eating them would just cross into an uncomfortable thresholds, dogs and cats fit into this category. The way we treat and raise livestock however humanly is usually carefully orchestrated to keep from humanizing them i.e we don't tend to name them or invite them into our personal space. Other cultures have different boundaries and taboos for their own reasons. In some ancient cultures eating the remains of an animal was a sign of respect.

    Bottom line in this story is that NZ culture does not tolerate well such actions as eating a family pet, so the immigrant family should respect their adopted homeland's beliefs, just as eating a cheeseburger in India or a pork roll in Iran is probably highly offending and most people respect that and don't do it.

    Immigration is always about compromising, but I doubt eating dog is integral to Tonga custom so its probably one of those things that will get dropped. On the upside, I am sure their are other parts of Tonga culture that NZ will be enriched by.

    August 18, 2009 at 12:38 pm | Reply
  21. Polly

    Good pet owners love their pets. I don't consider this a loving pet owner. Just a hardened hearted man.

    August 18, 2009 at 12:49 pm | Reply
  22. Lee

    It should be ok and something that should not be controlled by the government. eating dogs is a taboo because they are cute! Nobody is complaining about the thousands of Tuna that is being killed everyday but we raise all the alarms when we see a dolphin stranded in the shore... why? because dolphins are cute and adorable, tuna isn't!

    August 18, 2009 at 12:50 pm | Reply
  23. Gathuki.

    He or she can eat whatever they fancy.At the end of the day,no really has a foot to stand on on what another person eats for the simple reason that vegeterians really are just fuzzing the details when they go on about cruelty to animals.A lot of them will still wear leather shoes,silk shirts,or use furniture that's been joined with wood glue made from hooves and horns.So how does that gel with the whole "we don't wanna have animals killed" mantra?If humans weren't meant to eat meat,principally there wouldn't be other animals on the planet,but more interestingly why should humans have canines if they weren't made for meat.Check out a cow's dentition.They honestly don't have canines.They got a space called a diastema or something.So please,buzz off and let people be.Pet?Its gonna die at a point anyway,probably from cancer.So why doesn't it serve a dietary purpose once its owners have decided its time has come?

    August 18, 2009 at 12:52 pm | Reply
  24. peter drake

    if I or my family were without food then yes that would possibly be an option. Regarding the debate on the humane or cruel treatment of animals amongst westerners in general and animal rights advocates in particular I would only characterize it as a moral compass gone somewhat astray, it does however afford us an opportunity to look at our curious attitudes as they relate to animals and their 'rights', as apparently the lives of pets are somehow sacrosanct and of infinitely greater worth than other creatures routinely eaten without a second thought normally and pre-supposes that this somehow is a return to the natural order of things ... perhaps not so much barbaric but certainly bizarre to a more than a few billion non-westerners on the planet.

    August 18, 2009 at 1:06 pm | Reply
  25. maureen waldron

    this is one of the most disgusting things i,ve ever heard–it,s not like these people were from some 3rd world country and were starving–that would be different.

    August 18, 2009 at 1:11 pm | Reply
  26. Elham Lahoud

    It's all down to culture, i am sure that everytime a European or American eats a Beef Steak, he/she is insulting 1.2 billion Indians! But you do not hear them compain do you. is that fair??
    As long as the animals do not suffer, i think it is ok to eat whatever animal (off course not those under the risk of extinction).
    What about hunting and fishing...it is just part of the culture of some countries.
    It does not matter what we are eating, what matters is that we don't make the animals suffer. Period.

    August 18, 2009 at 1:14 pm | Reply
  27. Alexandra

    The difference between slaughtering and eating a pet dog and slaughtering and eating a pig is all in the way we relate to our animals.
    I look on my pet dog (incidentally a Staffordshire Bull Terrier) as a close friend, almost a family member, and could kill and eat him no more than I could kill and eat a human – friend, family member or stranger.
    Cows, pigs and chickens do not have the same kind of place in my life, and so I have no problem with slaughtering and eating them.

    If the guy in New Zealand had the same kind of relationship to his Stafford as I have to my own Stafford, I would say he must be deeply disturbed to be able to kill and eat the dog.
    If, on the other hand, he has always felt about the dog as farmers feel about their chickens and pigs, then there's nothing strange about his behaviour – but it still upsets me, because of the way I feel about dogs.

    August 18, 2009 at 1:16 pm | Reply
  28. John

    some where right now in some far off corner of the world there is a person or persons consuming every type of animal you could possibly imagine. Wheather it be out of necesity for survival in drought ridden places or simply for the enjoyment of eating a rare delicacy. Dog and cat have been on the menu in many cultures for as long as most can remember and rat is nothing new to the diet of most. The fact is if people seek out such foods they must on some level be rather tasy or it would have died out with the very first soup of the day as oposed to becoming a staple part of the diet some cultures seem to not be able to do without.

    August 18, 2009 at 1:16 pm | Reply
  29. Cristian R

    Very well said Magda Lupescu. Se vede ca esti din Romania – you have some common sense :)

    August 18, 2009 at 1:17 pm | Reply
  30. Paul

    If you like sex and people say your sister is good, should you have sex with her or is it wrong? If you understand the word 'pet' and have any honor, you have a relationship with the particular animal and responsibilities toward it. Is it 'wrong' to eat dog meat if you eat other meat...no. Is it wrong to eat your pet, whether it is a dog, pig, or cow, imo – yes. If you view all animals as just there for human 'use', then it's not really a pet.

    August 18, 2009 at 1:29 pm | Reply
  31. Vishwanath

    I am a vegetarian since birth and i find killing of animals horrible, but over the years i have learnt to tolerate the meat eating habits of non-vegetarians and stopped preaching my point of view.But i completely disagree with suggestions that human body requires meat in essential quantities.Indian civilisation has been in existence for over 5000 years and all recorded data indicates that our culture has followed vegetarianism from the beginning.Being a vegetarian is "Civilized evolution"..Cannibalism at one time was prevalent amongst our species.We evolved and stopped that practice.Some amongst us have gone even further and now live in complete harmony with nature.

    August 18, 2009 at 1:29 pm | Reply
  32. Maureen

    I agree wholeheartedly with Iena and Karen - animal cruelty all over the world seems to becoming the norm these days. People need to take more of a stance on this horrible reality - all living creatures deserve our total respect.

    August 18, 2009 at 1:34 pm | Reply
  33. Daniel

    It's ridiculous to judge eating dog as any worse or better than eating say beef, chicken, or fish. I live in South Korea where people eat dog meat. And people here will argue that they have a cultural right to practice that which they wish to practice. I myself a westerner find it very odd to encounter westerners with such hypocritical viewpoints. Obviously, eating animals is a barbaric practice no matter the kind of animal or the eating of animals is something we as humanity tolerate. Perhaps the revolting thought of eating ones pets might cause a few of you out there to consider that other animals are in the same unfortunate condition and adopt a lifestyle increasingly in line with vegetarianism...

    August 18, 2009 at 1:38 pm | Reply
  34. Vishwanath

    Gathuki.Your piont is sheer ridiculous."You are gonna die anyway..so why is it wrong if some human being or animal kills and eats you up today.After all Darwin's laws on evolution does not suggest that eating animals is ok,but being a cannibal is not ok"...Just like no sane person here will even think of hurting/killing another human being,a vegetarian would extend that courtesy to other animals as well(and plants as well).As far our canine teeth,it only proves that humans evolved as part of an evolution process and nothing else.Indian civilisation,as i pointed in my previous comment, has been predominantly vegetarian for more than 5000years..Vegetarianism involves "living in complete harmony" with your environment.And many are just trying to do that.Do not look at everything in black and white.So "Live and let live"...

    August 18, 2009 at 1:42 pm | Reply
  35. Gilbert

    Andrea's comments are most intelligent and insightful. People in modern and rich societies forget where they come from and what it takes to make them live the high standard of life they lead. I grew up on the farm and killed animals for food. It's not pleasant, but it's reality. I would not eat my cat or dog but I cannot really judge other cultures that eat these animals as we eat pork or beef. One can choose to be vegetarian but that decision is based on the emotional aspect of not wanting to kill a living animal for food. Don't forget that humans are animals just like lions, rabbits, and snakes. It's probably good not to forget that we are not special (except maybe for our intelligence and consciousness) and that we are part of a biological system that has existed forever.

    August 18, 2009 at 1:48 pm | Reply
  36. ELAINE CONFAIT

    I think it is the most disgusting thing I have ever seen, my pet cat is like my child – would he do the same????? he should be prosecuted & hung – or killed & cooked !!!!!!!

    August 18, 2009 at 2:03 pm | Reply
  37. elizabet C.

    Just think...if the planet earth in the future has a great deficit of food because of climate crisis... caused by polution and it´s consecuences...then esting dogs or cats is justifed, and when ecological disaster causes worst food crisis and hunger in the population...¿will humans eat humans?

    August 18, 2009 at 2:12 pm | Reply
  38. antonio romeo

    Eating animals (edible) what ever it is should be the owners prerogative. It is his right and privilege to do it. Because in the first place it is he who spend a lot of fur fortune and money and time and effort taking care of that animal.

    August 18, 2009 at 2:20 pm | Reply
  39. Sally H

    Too often animals are the targets of cruel and sadistic abuse by the sick and twisted among us. I would love to see the day when all hunting is banned, circuses are not considered entertainment and people realise that the mistreatment of animals by individuals is the first step towards becoming a serial killer.

    I find it absolutely disgusting that the authorities in New Zealand were unable to punish this coward.

    I would not eat any pet animal, under any circumstances.

    August 18, 2009 at 2:20 pm | Reply
  40. Vocs

    Seriously;

    The natural cycle of nature is brutal with animals being eaten alive by other animals. This is the neatural order of things in reality.

    People are an indisputable part of nature... no matter how hard they try to deny it and as such they have always included culturally approved meats in their diets. There are some (very recent in the scheme of things) religions and philosophies which discourage or avoid the consumption of meat but it is a thoroughly natural thing and other than the unfathomable cruelty of livestock being raised, transported, and abused in the meat-producing industries for profit animals die much more grusome deaths in the wild as part of the natural ecological food chain.

    Throughout history humans as a species have always eaten meat. Killing for no reason is unacceptable by any reasonable concept, theory, or philosophy but killing for the purpose of eating is fair enough. It's highly probable that the vast majority of vegetarians would resort quickly to eating meat of any kind if they were to find themselves lost in the wilderness and starving for a few days. Insects, rodents, mammals whatever they could find. It is natural.

    It is however one thing to not eat meat in protest of the oft-times deplorable conditions of the meat-producing industries which is a respectable stance and quite another when it is done from a personal view or philosophy about life "karma" or killing: These are personal beliefs and as such should remain personal not state mandated dictates for human behavior or eating habits other than people should not be allowed to eat other people's pet dogs of course!

    Eating a wild dog is one thing but eating ones pet – or a domestic dog is admittedly a bit strange and unless there were dire circumstances necessitating it quite inconceivable. It's all about the level of bonding that one has or hasn't with the dog and the level of domestication of the dog that makes this an emotionally-charged subject. Obviously eating pigs is also strange from the standpoint of intelligence and the ability to be a good pet. Dogs have proven themselves to be famously loyal, helpful, useful, and even heroic allies to humans and in that light it seems wrong to eat them. There are also numerous savage attacks by dogs every year resulting in deaths or severe maimings to their human victims which belies the canine's true nature... and origins from the primordial wilds.

    Fundamentally speaking killing is killing. But to compare the killing of a fly or mosquito to killing a whale or chimpanzee is somewhat unbalanced for obvious reasons and not just because the whale or chimp is cute or bigger than the fly.

    Hopefully reason, rationale and sanity will guide us in our dealings with animals... and each other by the way: But there will always be cultural differences as to which animals are regarded as acceptable foods. Throughout history various groups of people actually defined themselves by which animals they ate and which ones they didn't. And this has as much to say about our tolerance of each other's differences as anything.

    August 18, 2009 at 2:31 pm | Reply
  41. akeel

    Here in Tunisia, we have an entire region famous with eating Dogs as an illness treatment and mostly roasted in barbecue gatherings with fermented palm tree juice or red Wine. But they did not eat any dogs, special dogs are raised and feeded in a special way for these practices.

    August 18, 2009 at 2:40 pm | Reply
  42. clark harris

    i can see some one doing this, we must rember that things are not the same all over theworld. we always think we are right! america ideas.but this is not so.food is food

    August 18, 2009 at 2:48 pm | Reply
  43. Rich

    For the true meatlovers out there, please go to Viet Nam. You will find that dog, or cho', is a specialty and served complete with grapes in the mouth while roasted whole on a platter. This is a cultural tradition that is respected. If, as a world community, we would like to draft a more updated, refined and moral Animal Bill of Rights, then so be it. But, imposing Western values on eating animals only compounds the problem by also trampling on the rights of other peoples (in a most hypocritical way).

    August 18, 2009 at 2:49 pm | Reply
  44. Jill

    I am just curious whether all of the animal loving vegetarians out there take care to feed their animals vegetarian pet food. Oh woe to horses, fish, rodents, and insects that too often end up in their NATURAL place as part of the food chain.

    Why do we not see headlines spouting outrage at the onset of every hunting season? We have no problem picking up a pound of hamburger for the cook-out or a bucket of hot wings. We routinely kill rodents and other 'pests'. Yet, to kill a pet remains taboo. Is it because the former have been literally stripped of their 'cuteness' causing their slaying to fly below our moral radar? Is it because we are supposed to have a special bond with our pets that would prevent such an act? Would it be, therefore, less appalling to kill and eat a stranger's pet? The whole discussion smacks of Dennis Leary's routine regarding 'dolphin-free tuna' and the hypocrisy therein.

    August 18, 2009 at 3:05 pm | Reply
  45. MoMoll

    I would not eat my own pet; but who says this dog was his pet? Not everyone treats the animals the live with like a member of the family. Perhaps he had nothing else to feed his family (that is another possibility).
    I find it worse to see a woman carrying her little dog in a bag, while the 2 year child struggles to keep up.

    August 18, 2009 at 3:13 pm | Reply
  46. Jorge

    A clear distinction here in my opinion is the relationship established. A true pet is traditionally a friend. I find it unethical to slaughter a friend and eat him/her.

    August 18, 2009 at 3:19 pm | Reply
  47. Lenny

    What" s the difference in eating a dog, a cat or a cow ?
    It's all disgusting.

    August 18, 2009 at 3:21 pm | Reply
  48. Nutritionist

    Fear Factor didn't seem to make an impression, eh? All flora, fauna and organic substances are fair game. Rocks can even be a digestive aid, and some muds are known to assist with certain GI disorders.

    To the whiners about Europeans and Asians – it is difficult to accept the merit of a different point of view from one who cannot spell European. Secondly, I have done video and photo documentary work related to slaughter of several species – free-range pig, lamb and chicken. I can say that their suffering was brief and the sustenance their flesh afforded was quite welcome to those who took them. "Kill them quickly – cook them slowly" seems to be the edict.

    Dog, cat, monkey, tiny baby birds, frogs, snake and some more exotic species have all dangled upon my fork and knife at least once – though not all are recommendable. And they don't all taste like chicken!

    We are all prey for some other species – humans are especially vulnerable to bacteria, viruses and micro-phages, many of which consume us live. Be thankful there is little probability of your surviving a plane crash in the mountains only to be eaten by those who outlast you.

    Bon apetit!

    August 18, 2009 at 3:24 pm | Reply
  49. Rasa

    If it would become a normal act to murder your pet dog, what kind of TRUST would you have between you and the animal? What about "Man's best friend"?

    August 18, 2009 at 3:29 pm | Reply
  50. Alex

    I think that this is a horrific way to treat animals. Why would anybody ever dream of eating their own pet? The law needs to be changed.

    August 18, 2009 at 4:06 pm | Reply
  51. Ray

    I find the comments about meat lovers, western culture, etc. very odd...isn't the point of this story is not that its a dog or being vegetarian, but that this was their pet? And their pet was not killed because it was terminally ill or that the family had financial problems...but because they were bored of it. In that sense, doesn't it not matter whether it was a panda, dog, sheep, rat, or gold fish? Shouldn't there be a distinction between taking in a dog as a pup knowing one day your family will eat it versus taking in a dog as a pet and eating it because your were bored of it?

    August 18, 2009 at 4:14 pm | Reply
  52. Kris

    I think this man is totally insane! Animals have the same rights as humans, only diffrence is that they can't stand for themselves.

    We don't eat our children, why should we eat our pets? There isn't actually no "why", this is absolutely .... horrible thing to do.

    And we all should support "stop killing animals" campain.

    August 18, 2009 at 4:27 pm | Reply
  53. J. Grant

    who says that animals are not your friends? when did they exactly become our enemies? the chinese are not particularly the most emotional people on this planet, thus I regard that viewpoint as invalid, as they cannot be regarded the same as the rest of us. New Zealand is not a third-world country, they are just as advanced as the rest of us, only they simply have different cultures to us. As for the actual point – eating dog = again, it is personal choice. But I think that we should think carefully before throwing up our arms... The majority of us eat meat – how does that make it any different from eating a dog. True, eating your own pet – that is a hard thing to do. But provided that (this is the most important thing) the dog was living a good life, and was killed humanely, then there is no reason to be so upset about it. I couldnt kill my own dogs, but then again, I don't view them as a food, but as my best friends. I rarely eat meat, and when I do I always make sure it is RSPCA stamped; that is the least I can do. One might argue, but I believe that we need if only a little meat for our bodies... just like dogs, cats, and other animals...

    August 18, 2009 at 5:03 pm | Reply
  54. lena

    So much diversity of opinion. Someone mentioned an animal bill of rights, which is a great idea. If people must eat animals, which I don't agree is necessary, there should be standards for how they are raised, kept, treated and killed. I think it was Ghandi who said: "The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated." I agree fully.

    August 18, 2009 at 5:08 pm | Reply
  55. csc

    If there is a situation when a "pet" is being slaughtered for food instead of domesticating it then maybe a fine line would have been crossed. When an animal is maintained as a pet instead of an animal in a slaughter house, feelings and emotion would have been developed. And to certain extent/ degree of emotional attachment to the pet involved, some families would have even treated that animals as part of the family members and in those instances doesn't this effectively constitute to some degree of cannibalism? Stories were once heard that cannibalism only occurs for survival reason or when a crime is indeed committed. There is no longer any line drawn between what's a pet and what's in the food supply chain. Read this: Theodore Roosevelt described when he said (used for antivivisectionists), ‘Common sense without conscience may lead to crime, but conscience without common sense may lead to folly, which is the handmaiden of crime'.

    A dog does poses the level of intelligence to understand things including first and foremost being a man's best friend or even show a level of loyalty/ devotion to their owners. Some even posesses the ability and were trained as a guide dog to the blind or assisting police in crimes fighting.

    Animal rights have long been fought for. Is the law now sufficiently covers the interest of these animals which has been part of the support system that we are living in? The wake up call is yours to change the legislation.

    In most instances, when some people around the world consumes dog meat it was hardly kept/ were maintained as a "pet" but rather it might have been keep in a cage just like any other animals meant for food consumption.There is a degree of emotional detachment from those animals.

    August 18, 2009 at 6:24 pm | Reply
  56. Charlotte

    Horrible!!! Your pet is suppose to be your companion not your supper! They have rights too!

    August 18, 2009 at 8:08 pm | Reply
  57. Marty

    Why is it okay to kill a cow, deer, turkey, or pig. Every one loves to eat fish, fish is an animal, why can we kill those things and its okay. But if some one kills some that abnormal or different to most, its just awful. Any one who thinks that eating a dog is wrong is GIANT Hypocrite!!!

    August 18, 2009 at 8:27 pm | Reply
  58. Ramon F Herrera

    Let's say that instead of a dog, it was a pet turkey, chicken or pig.

    I emotionally find revolting the thought of eating a horse, cat or dog. Then again some people in India have similar feeling about eating cows, which a find rather tasty, a juicy steak being my favorite food.

    I guess we have some sort of ancestral feeling of protection for live beings which live under our own roof. That "gene" prevents us from eating our young.

    August 19, 2009 at 12:13 am | Reply
  59. Ramon F Herrera

    I respect vegetarians, but find some of the arguments and campaigns rather ridiculous.

    God: "Hey Ms. Cow you have two options: (a) Never be born (because all humankind is vegetarian and cows live in zoos only) or (b) to be born, enjoy life for a while, but end it when your meat is needed".

    Ms. Cow: "Better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all".

    God: "I guess cows are pro-life, with the understanding that an inseparable part of life is death".

    August 19, 2009 at 12:18 am | Reply
  60. David

    Its about time laws distinguish between different animal species. for example – dogs, dolphins, great apes etc. are not to be treated like insects!

    August 19, 2009 at 1:03 am | Reply
  61. citoyenjoseph

    Animal or man...killing is killing and meat is murder.

    August 19, 2009 at 6:22 am | Reply
  62. Clarissa

    that is just absolutly sick. the fact that they were not raising the dog specifically to eat but as a family pet IS wrong of them. all of you who say this isnt wrong are (in my opinion) heartless. why dont you people understand that animals can feel affection, sadness, etc...they have feelings like any other one of us. that dog was attached to that family. i dont understand why the family wouldnt feel remorse for killing the family pet. for those of you who believe this is "ok" why dont you keep a cat or dog for 3 years, get attached then knock it over the head with a hammer, slit its throat and eat it for dinner. sick.

    August 19, 2009 at 10:23 pm | Reply
  63. Alex

    I would rather cut off my left arm and eat it. Period. My dogs have put food on my family's table.

    August 20, 2009 at 1:46 am | Reply
  64. If it is okay to eat dog,

    ..then perhaps it is time for us to start eating humans as a way to control the population of the world.

    Stupid argument, no more stupid argument than those on here who are saying it's okay to eat a companion animal.

    For those who are saying it's okay to eat dog, there are countries in the world such as China where a growing number of people are actually starting to protest against it.

    August 20, 2009 at 8:39 am | Reply
  65. Nattnz

    New Zealand as a normal country do not eat our pet's dog or cat. Tonga doesn't practice this kind of behaviour either apparently. This family were broke & couldn't afford to feed the dog anymore, I heard the father say 'live' on our local news channel. For this to hit the world headlines on CNN makes me sick & plenty more New Zealanders are a shamed of the this event ever happening on our soil! This does not happen in New Zealand, not that I'm aware of anyways!

    August 20, 2009 at 1:33 pm | Reply
  66. Billie

    My pet is part of our family. I can not see killing him myself. IF I had to put him down, I would take him to the SPCA for help. Now, far as EATING him?! That is insane! That is almost like eating my own child!!! NO WAY! Either he is a pet or he is a meal. People have pig farms and such and the sole purpose is for meat. I just don't get it. I know people have pigs as pets also, but those same people are not killing them because they are a "pest' and eating them! If they are....its just crazy. My opinion.

    August 20, 2009 at 1:45 pm | Reply
  67. Ezedinma

    Why will an animal lover have beef for dinner and then detest a hot dog for lunch. Afterall both are animals.

    August 20, 2009 at 2:00 pm | Reply
  68. Kevin

    If farmers are able to eat what they raise, why can't ordinary people eat what they raise?

    We Americans need to stop projecting our Americanism into other cultures; it's ignorance.

    August 21, 2009 at 1:03 am | Reply
  69. adilson

    he is a very crazy man. i willnever eat a dog in my life

    August 24, 2009 at 12:26 pm | Reply
  70. Drake

    okay jackass CNN
    if you are a "farming family in Europe" you dont own "pets" like lamb chicken or sheep because of the...wait for it...KEYWORD of "FARMING" family!
    also who proofreads your articles? use spellcheck much or ?

    August 24, 2009 at 4:59 pm | Reply
  71. Darren

    Is any Aussie REALLY surprised?

    August 24, 2009 at 9:58 pm | Reply
  72. meat is meat

    the real question is "why a terrier?" aren't they a little bony? something more substantial like a labrador would be better.

    August 26, 2009 at 2:59 pm | Reply
  73. Arindam Dey

    If animal activists have a problem with someone eating their pet dog they should target making the whole country vegetarian rather than just protest this one act.

    If others in the country can eat cows, pigs, chicken and god knows what else this should also be allowed. If they want to protest the "inhumane" circumstances of the poor dog's slaughter they should perhaps petition the government to run a slaughter house where people should be able to bring any animal they want to slaughter and the government/activists can ensure that it is "humanely" slaughtered.

    August 31, 2009 at 11:43 am | Reply
  74. doglover

    that is absolutely deranged. and no, i'm sorry but cattle is completely different from domesticated pack animals.

    someone should consider banning dogs from that region. im sure they can find something to eat out of all the REAL food we have in this world.

    "people" like this make me sick....

    September 18, 2009 at 2:23 pm | Reply
  75. Sam

    I am writing this Particular comment base on the picture of a Black MAN that travel to Thailand for Holiday. But it was quite unfortunate that, this man was slaughtered by the people of Thailand. That's quite incredible. I could see the picture on how they lay a human being on the floor-kill him, roasted him and eat him up. I personally, considered this as abomination in the presence of God and even in the presence of humanity. That is not acceptable.

    My advice to travellers is that you need to find out information about any country you are travelling to if it is the right place to be. One question, I keep asking myself, can this be true about People of Thailand EATING A HUMAN BODY LIKE THEMSELVES?

    October 6, 2009 at 3:05 am | Reply
  76. Animal Lover

    This is so sick. Pets are to be enjoyed and loved not eatten. I don;t care if it's a part of their culture. Laws need to be changed all over the world. I am tired of hearing and seeing animal abuse. Get with the program!!!

    December 31, 2009 at 6:28 am | Reply
  77. Robert

    This is one of the sickest things I've heard. People with screwed up customs have no trouble criticizing those of us in the West for being "too liberal" yet when they pull this sort of crap they expect to be let off the hook because it's a native custom for then. No way! And the moronic Mayor of Auckland, who is supposedly an animal rights activist, says rather than new laws we need education. Really? Do you really think that simply asking someone not to do something that's considered inhumane in the West will work? If you do, you're an idiot and don't deserve to be in public office. Dogs are domesticated animals...they're not chickens. Change the law and prosecute for all future acts of barbarism.

    December 31, 2009 at 7:57 am | Reply
  78. Herb

    Dogs are animals that can be trained to support the well being of man. eating them shows a mind set that keep people and their countries in a state of poverty. Notice the nations that do such things and you are looking at nations where the majority of the people are in poverty, and the rich ones do not eat such things. It is the mind set of a barbarian, a way of thinking that CANNOT create a stable AND prosperous nation. If a civil nation allow others to come into it and retain such practices, it brings down that nation to a level from which the practice came. I could care less that they can do it in "their" country. GO BACK if you want to do it. In the US, eat your dog, GO TO JAIL!

    December 31, 2009 at 2:28 pm | Reply
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