Despite condemnation from countries around the world of the Chinese dog meat trade, sales are booming. In the run up to the annual Yulin dog meat festival Sky News reports on the slaughter of over 400 dogs and 200 cats.
Notwithstanding the cruelty of the trade and the lack of compassion afforded to animals others see as pets, China’s trade in dog meat and other unusual animals is cause for concern, especially given the virulence of the recent novel coronavirus.
Pandemic risk high
Dr Peter Li from Humane Society International, told Sky News, "We understand that pandemics are caused by a huge concentration of animals of different species - animals with compromised immune systems.
"A lot of dogs are such animals, in great concentration, and with huge psychological and physical problems. Dog meat is a potential breeding ground for a pandemic."
The Covid-19 outbreak is widely considered to have begun at a wet food market in Wuhan where the sale of animals such as Pangolins, bats, cats and dogs is commonplace.