Changing the Outlook for Dogs in the Philippines: The Next Generation Has Its Say on Dog Meat Trade

The Asian dog meat trade is a topic that dog lovers from the West often hear about, usually, with our own dogs sitting at our feet, we think of the fate awaiting dogs on the other side of the world and do what we can by adding our own voice to calls to end the trade.

For some countries, change is happening – and has been happening – for many years from the inside, but when certain traditions fight against those laws how do you enforce change?

The Philippines has laws which prohibit and restrict the dog meat trade. In fact, the Philippines’ capital city, Manila, prohibited these acts against dogs earlier than 1982, writes Greg Salido Quimpo, who is Campaign Manager for Animal Kingdom Foundation (AKF) Inc in the Philippines.

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But still a small proportion (less than 1% of the country’s 102 million people) fight against the restrictions and they do this due to an exemption in the Philippine Animal Welfare Act of 1998 that says dogs can be slaughtered for a ritual sanctioned by local leaders, which reads, ‘When it is done as part of the religious rituals of an established religion or sect or a ritual required by tribal or ethnic custom of indigenous cultural communities; however, leaders shall keep records in cooperation with the Committee on Animal Welfare.’

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