Taiwan bans eating dog and cat meat

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In new trending news, Taiwan has recently outlawed the consumption of dog and cat meat. This is good news for cats and dogs as the island's legislature on Tuesday passed a new landmark amendment to its animal protection laws, according to its official Central News Agency (CNA). Taiwan's new progressive meat ban is part of a growing trend across Asia to end the brutal dog meat trade. Previously, the Animal Protection Act only covered the slaughter and sale of dog and cat meat, but this new amendment that specifically prohibits the actual consumption of dog meat is a welcome change. So for individuals who eat or trade any dog or cat meat can now be fined anywhere from $1,640 to $8,200. The new amendment also bans walking the pet on a leash pulled by cars and motorcycles and raises the new penalty for cruelty to animals. Taiwan has doubled the new maximum prison term for animal cruelty to two years along with raising the fine up to $65,500 for any act that deliberately harms animals and results in organ failure, mangled limbs, or death.

The new law will have violators possibly seeing their names, photos, and their crimes publicized. The president of Taiwan, Tsai Ing-wen, was frequently seen posing with her two cats on the campaign trail. The president also adopted three retired guide dogs last year. Animal lovers have long pushed for the amendment after a string of shocking animal abuse cases. Dog meat is food that is consumed in many parts of Asia including China, Korea, the Philippines, and Indonesia. The new law also sends a strong signal to both China and South Korea where the dog meat trade remains and millions of dogs are brutally killed. China has long been criticized for its annual dog meat festival that is held every year in Yulin, southern China. At the annual festival more than 10,000 dogs are slaughtered and served as meals. The good news is that there is a growing opposition in China and around the world to the consumption of dog meat.

The Lychee and Dog Meat Festival, also known as the Yulin Dog Festival, is held in June every year, amid outrage from the international community for the city to halt the controversial event. Critics of the horrible festival, which has in the past included celebrity condemnations from Joaquin Phoenix, Matt Damon, and Rooney Mara in widely circulated PSA from non-profit organization Animal Hope and Wellness Foundation, have said that the meat festival is baseless and barbaric. The Yulin Festival is fairly new. The meat festival has only existed since the year 2010, though dog hot-pots became fairly popular within Yulin in the 1990's. Consumption of dog meat has taken place in China and the rest of Asia for thousands of years. Dog meat is said to help alleviate heat exhaustion, which has led to the meat being especial popular on summer menus. It is said that the Yulin Festival is pretty dirty. Because beyond cruelty concerns, many opponents of the barbaric festival cite serious hygienic concerns of the meat itself. Some of the conditions cited include that the dogs that are being transported and slaughtered are often poor and treated with little respect to their well-being. Many of the dogs that are used are unvaccinated, and rabies is a very high concern. It's estimated that approximately 25 million dogs are eaten every year, worldwide.

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