Jun 25, 2020 in Society

Dog eating in Taiwan: Unethical or not

Every nation has distinct practices that define their culture. The attributes range from their daily economic activities to the feeding habits among others. In Taiwan, there are many issues that have raised concern in the recent past. Nevertheless, the subject of dog eating is a food related issue that has brought to light numerous controversial views. In essence, most citizens of Taiwan views eating of dog meat as unethical practice in the society. The practice has been common in Taiwan and other parts of China. Particularly, the recurring festival of the Summer Solstice has been an opportunity for the display of the slaughtered dogs. For example, during the last festival on June 21st, an estimated ten thousand dogs were slaughtered for consumption. The act of dog eating dates back to the ancient traditions of China. In fact, it can be traced to 1700 B.C where it started in the North. The activity has been common in some parts of Asia such as North Korea, South Korea and Vietnam among other nations. The spread of the activity has already penetrated Taiwan. Nevertheless, the public uproar by a segment of citizens raises concern regarding the ethics of the regions. Dogs are important friends to the Taiwan society and thus eating of the dog flesh is a violation of the ethical perspectives of Taiwan region.

Dogs have been critical components of households as a form of pet. In many parts of Taiwan, dogs have been a primary example of pets for both the young and the old people. In essence, most children love to cuddle the dogs as they watch their favorite programs. They take ample time to care for them and develop relationship with them. Research indicates that dogs have been some of the lasting friends of mankind. They have outlasted human friend relationships that are subject to changes by time and offences. Many parents admit that pet dogs enable their children overcome the loneliness in the house. For example, there are times that parents spend most of their time at work. They leave the children under the care of house help. The pet dogs have been imperative in enhancing the interaction and the mood of the children. Consequently, they believe that eating the dogs is unethical. It will lead to a decline in the populations of these pets. As a result, the children will not find pets to play with. They consider it unethical to feed on what your child considers a friend. Govender presents public moral statement when he says “what you just put in your mouth could have been your child's partner in growth," The statement indicates the vital role in the growth process that people attach to the dogs. The society in Taiwan has a high esteem for the dogs. The act of killing the dog is an evident negation to the developmental process of their children. Dogs are therefore, important animals.

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Dogs are a form security. The ability of dogs to provide security is important since man domesticated dogs thousands of years ago. From the era of Roman reign, dogs have provided security in homes. The use of the animals as a source of security has developed and been transformed as various advancements have accompanied human civilization. Currently, there are numerous breeds of dogs that are best suited to provision of security on various fronts. For instance, some breeds are best suited to guard homesteads at night while some breeds are more suited to aid in tracking criminals. The use of dogs as a source of security has expanded from the private use in homes. During wartimes in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, dogs were significant part of the troops used. Currently, the police forces have adopted the use of dogs. Moreover, a significant number of security firms use dogs as an integral part of their service provision. The above underscore the relevance and importance of dogs in with regards to ensuring security. Consequently, eating of dogs will inevitably cause a strain on the population of dogs. As a result, a necessity is denied to people. In essence, dogs remain a critical part of humanity.

Dogs take part in hunting. Belonging to the canine family makes dogs of tremendous value in hunting. A considerable number of persons who participate in hunting do keep dogs. The animals are an integral part of the hunting expeditions. In Taiwan, there are indigenous breeds of dogs that have been predominantly used for hunting. An example is the Formosan mountain dogs. These dogs help in tracking the game during hunting expeditions. Additionally, the dogs are energetic thus have the ability to chase after the prey. Moreover, being canines they are able to have a firm grasp on the game ensuring an already captured game does not escape. Furthermore, the deep bark of some of the hunting dogs are of significant value during hunting. The bark is able to scare the quarry of hiding where the hunter would otherwise not be able to locate the game. Since, the hunting dogs can be trained on the various aspects of hunting. There has been a recorded efficiency in the hunting excursions leading to increased availability of meat. Additionally, the hunters have more time to spend on other activities. The use of dogs as a source of meat will be equivalent to turning the hunter into prey. Furthermore, it will lead to a decline in the meat obtained through hunting. It is evident that dogs are important to the society.

Dog eating is a form of taboo. In Taiwan, the dogs are primarily pets. Therefore, eating dog meat should be considered a taboo. This is because turning dogs to be a source of food will cause an unwarranted competition. As a result, the use of dogs as pets will be hard hit negatively causing the persons who depend on dogs as pets to suffer. The interaction between dogs and the people of Taiwan draws back to many years. Over that time, a close friendship has developed. Dogs are intrinsically intertwined into the culture and history of Taiwan. Consequently, it would be immoral to feed on an animal that holds considerable amount of respect among the citizens of Taiwan. Needless to say, they form part of our daily life.

Dogs are carriers of the rabies virus. Rabies is a viral infection that has the potential to affect central nervous system that is the brain as well as the spinal cord of a mammal. Some of the specific categories of the animals included are human beings, cats and dogs. The virus initially affects the brain, but the ultimate effect is that it can cause death. When an animal infected by rabies, bites another, then the virus is transferred and dumped in the subcutaneous and the muscle tissues. Therefore, feeding on dog meat could prove to be a risky venture. There is a possibility that an individual may end up feeding on a rabid dog. Under circumstances where the dog meat is not properly cooked, then some strains of the rabies virus could find their ways into the human body. Additionally, the people who prepare the dog meat are at elevated risk of infections if they do not take utmost precaution. The rabies virus resides in the mucous membranes. Therefore, in the course of preparing the dog meat, the exposure to contact with the mucous membranes is greatly enhanced leading to increased likelihood of infection. Furthermore, it is unethical to feed on an animal that plays host to a virus as dangerous a rabies. This is because an individual knowingly exposes themselves to such a deadly virus that can easily cause their death in case of an infection.

Counterargument

Dogs were originally bred for food. In a considerable number of communities, consumption of dog meat is not an alien practice. One of the reasons for domesticating dogs in certain cultures was purely as a source of food. Moreover, dog meat is tasty and delicious thus, it should form part of the diet. Since dogs are animals, it therefore, means that they are a potentially rich source of proteins. Since dogs are in plenty in Taiwan, then it sounds plausible that feeding on dog meat will accord the citizens of Taiwan an opportunity to partake of a unique delicacy. Additionally, eating dog meat affords the Taiwanese the privilege of broadening their supply of proteins. Consequently, they are able ensure a steadfast supply of proteins for a balanced diet in their meals. The appreciation of dog meat has led to a number of festivals being convened in certain cultures to celebrate dogs as a source of meat. Consequently, the people of Taiwan should not be left out in such unique ways of celebrating one of their closest friends. Finally, in some communities, dog meat is considered to be of medicinal value. It is claimed that dog meat can be used to treat rheumatism. Moreover, some people believe the meat is beneficial to the kidneys and the stomach. From the above reasons, eating of dogs’ meat can be of tremendous benefit.

Rebuttal

The eating of dog meat and its associated events has attracted a significant amount outcry from animal right activists. The protests are directed towards the treatment of dogs. First, the animal right outcry has been based on the perceived cruelty the dogs experienced. On numerous occasions, the dogs intended for slaughter are locked in cages for a number of days. Meanwhile, while under detention in the cages, the dogs are starved and hardly provided with food as well as water. On numerous occasions, the dogs are transported over long distances under such conditions. Moreover, at the slaughterhouses, it is reported that the dogs are tortured to death. An important question underlying the unacceptability of eating dog meat is captured by some writers.

According to particular individuals, “how much suffering are we justified in inflicting on animals in order to turn them into meat, or to use their eggs or milk?” Additionally, a significant number of the dogs killed for their meat are bred as pets. Therefore, the activists have argued that it is unethical to kill a dog reared as a pet for its meat. The eating of dogs is also considered unethical practice in many societies. In essence, while these are domesticated animals, they have wild features that are similar to other untamed animals in the forests. They do not have the attributes that would promote their intake as food in the society. It is, therefore, demeaning to the moral standards of China for an individual to consume dogs. In fact, such a person does what is otherwise considered as an abomination to the society.

Conclusion

The idea of eating dog meat should be rejected by the people of Taiwan. The treatment meted on the animals is torturous and inhumane. Moreover, dogs are considerable importance to human beings. Dogs have had an outstanding friendship with human beings more specifically the citizens of Taiwan. In the country, the animal is the number one pet loved by parents and children alike. Therefore, it would be inconceivable and highly immoral to turn dogs to food. Consequently, the people of Taiwan should all stand out and reject vehemently ant idea and suggestion intended towards allowing eating of dog meat. However, they should rather stand to strongly push for laws and regulations that prohibit any practice that promotes the eating of dog meat. It is therefore, the responsibility of every citizen of Taiwan to reject eating the meat of a dog. The solution to ending the eating of dogs is t engage the local government of Taiwan. Tough laws should be set to deal dog eating in the region. In fact, such individuals should be sentenced to some month’s imprisonment. The public should also be educated regarding the importance of dogs to humanity. The campaign against dog eating should aim at empowering to view dogs as household pets and not a source of food.

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