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Dog eating in Vietnam: history and hope

26 May 2014

Tuan Bendixsen

Tuan Bendixsen, Animals Asia’s Vietnam Director writes, for One Green Planet on the history of eating dog in Vietnam. Through his insight of dogs’ place in Vietnamese culture and how the dog meat industry is changing, Tuan reveals there is hope that the practice can be ended.

 Here’s a snippet:

 “Since ancient times, Vietnamese people have regarded dogs as man’s best four-legged friends. Some have even placed stone statues of dogs at the front gates of their houses or villages to ward off evil spirits. The Dich Vi village in Hanoi’s Dan Phuong has worshipped stone dogs for hundreds of years. On every 1st and 15th day of the lunar month, incense is burned at these statues and people come to pray and ask for solutions to their problems. However, even though dogs have this special place in Vietnamese culture and society, dog meat is still widely regarded as part of Vietnamese culinary culture.

 “The debate about the dog meat trade is an emotional one, where culture is often used to defend dog meat eating. However, culture cannot be used as an excuse for cruelty and, given the rising level of pet ownership in Vietnam, there is now much hope for ending a practice that sees millions of dogs slaughtered every year for the dog meat trade.”

Click here to read the article on One Green Planet.