Merkley Joins Effort to End Dogs and Cats Slaughter for Global Meat Trade

Oregon’s Senator Jeff Merkley joined Congressmen Alcee Hastings (D-FL-20) and Vern Buchanan (R-FL-16) last week in announcing a new resolution calling for an end to the global trade of dog and cat meat, given reports that 30 million dogs and 10 million cats are cruelly slaughtered each year for consumption.  

“Millions of dogs and cats are subjected to inhumane conditions before being slaughtered in the most barbaric ways,” said Merkley. “These disturbing practices must end. This resolution sends an important message to the perpetrators of these abuses, that the United States is committed to enforcing essential animal welfare standards, and is urging the global community to do the same.”  

“I am proud to have introduced this crucial bipartisan concurrent resolution with Congressman Buchanan along with Senator Merkley, which urges all countries to end their dog and cat meat trade,” said Hastings. “While the passage of H.Res.401 in addition to the passage of the domestic ban on this barbaric trade last Congress were a huge step forward in giving the U.S. greater standing to advance the global animal protection movement, we still face many challenges in putting an end to this heinous practice once and for all. The thousands of animal welfare advocates and numerous organizations who work day in and day out to ensure the humane treatment of these innocent animals have my utmost admiration and gratitude. Together, I look forward to working with the endorsing organizations along with my colleagues to pass this resolution, not only to strengthen the U.S. commitment to the protection of animals, but also the rapidly growing global movement to end this brutal and heartbreaking trade.”  

“Dogs and cats provide love and companionship to millions of people and should not be slaughtered and sold as food,” said Buchanan. “The United States sent a strong message last year by passing the bill that Rep. Hastings and I introduced to permanently ban the practice domestically. The U.S. should continue to be a leader against this inhumane and unsafe industry by passing this resolution condemning the practice across the globe.”  

“Around 30 million dogs and 10 million cats are subjected to this brutal industry globally every year, with animals often snatched off the street or stolen from loving families, still wearing collars as they are subjected to unspeakable abuse to end up on someone’s dinner plate,” said Humane Society Legislative Fund President Sara Amundson.  “We are so grateful to Representatives Hastings and Buchanan and Senator Merkley for leading the bipartisan fight in Congress to end this horrific cruelty worldwide.”  

Extensive reports detail how dogs and cats around the world experience abuse and poor living conditions, such as days or weeks without adequate food or water, and cruel slaughtering techniques—including hanging and bludgeoning—that breach American anti-cruelty laws.  

In addition, the World Health Organization has linked the processing and consumption of these meats with outbreaks of diseases such as rabies, trichinellosis, and cholera. These health risks, coupled with the horrific pain and suffering inflicted upon the animals, have led the governments of Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand, the Philippines, and Hong Kong to pass laws banning the dog meat trade.  

The congressional resolution affirms the commitment of the United States to advancing the causes of animal protection and animal welfare domestically and around the world by calling for an end to the consumption and trade of these meats, and urging all other nations with a dog or cat meat trade to enforce the same commitment.