The information that Hoi An City People’s Committee signed with FOUR PAWS a commitment not to use dog and cat meat as food has attracted the special attention of the public. The agreement is already in effect and will run for two years.
While people and travelers have shown their support and agreement, business households worry about their livelihoods.
Julie Sanders of FOUR PAWS said: “This is an important, groundbreaking moment in Vietnam and in the region. Every year in Vietnam, more than 5 million dogs and 1 million cats are traded and killed for meat, endangering animal rights and public health. Dogs and cats can be the source of diseases. I call on the community to stop eating dog meat.”
The owners of dog meat shops in Hoi An said they are experiencing difficulties due to the council’s decision.
Nguyen Van Thanh, the owner of Thanh Bac Dog Meat Shop, said he heard about Hoi An’s devotion, but he still serves dog meat dishes at his shop.
His shop, operational since 2003, receives almost 100 customers every day. The store has been an important source of income for his family for years.
“We will have to observe the decisions of the municipal authorities, but there must be solutions to switch to other matters,” Thanh said.
Thuong, 34, the owner of Ha Thanh Dog Meat Shop in Nguyen Tat Thanh Street, also said he still doesn’t know what he would do if he had to close the shop, which is the income for his 4-person family.
Hanoi must learn from Hoi An and refuse dog, cat meat?
Vietnam’s capital Hanoi also planned to ban the dog and cat meat trade in central districts from 2021, but locals say this is an integral part of Vietnamese culture and should not be regulated.
Since 2018, the capital announced that the slaughter and consumption of what many consider pets are off-putting to tourists and expats and do not present a “modern” image of the capital.
Local district authorities have recently been urged to launch campaigns aimed at getting people to stop eating dog and cat meat, warning of the risks of contracting diseases, including potentially fatal rabies and leptospirosis that can be transmitted from infected animals. . Hanoi also plans to close all dog meat restaurants in the city center.
Before the Covid-19 pandemic, it was estimated that more than 1,000 vendors and restaurants offer dog and cat meat in Hanoi alone.