On Thursday, two members of the Florida congressional delegation teamed up to offer a proposal calling for an end to global dog meat and cat meat trade.
Republican U.S. Rep. Vern Buchanan and Democrat U.S. Rep. Alcee Hastings brought out a resolution “calling on China, South Korea, Vietnam, Thailand, the Philippines, Indonesia, Cambodia, Laos, India and all nations to end their dog and cat meat trade and to enforce existing laws against the trade.”
This is not the first time the two congressmen tackled the issue. Back in March, Buchanan and Hastings unveiled the “Dog and Cat Meat Trade Prohibition Act," a proposal banning the slaughter of cats and dogs for human consumption.
Hastings made the case for the new resolution on Thursday
“Approximately 30,000,000 dogs and a large number of cats are killed for human consumption annually across the globe. This extreme display of animal cruelty is not only inhumane, but also a threat to public health for citizens and international visitors. The United States must demand that this horrific practice be stopped immediately,” said Hastings.
“I am proud to have introduced this bipartisan resolution urging all countries to end their dog and cat meat trade,” Hastings said. “The resolution affirms the United States’ commitment to the protection of animals and advances the animal protection movement rapidly growing around the world. I want to commend the thousands of supporters and animal welfare groups, who continue to work tirelessly to end the global dog and cat meat trade once and for all. While we still face many challenges, we must remain vigilant in this fight together and make our voices heard.”
“Dogs and cats provide companionship to millions and should not be slaughtered and sold as food,” Buchanan said. “It’s time to provide important protections for our most popular pets.”
The Animal Hope & Wellness Foundation, Animal Welfare Institute, Hounds and Heroes, Humane Society International, Humane Society Legislative Fund, The Humane Society of the United States and People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) are all behind the resolution.
The issue is not a new one for either of the two congressmen from the Sunshine State who are the co-chairs of the Florida delegation. Hastings has been leading the charge on Capitol Hill in condemning the Yulin Dog Meat Festival in China where 10,000 dogs are slaughtered each year for human consumption.
Buchanan has also garnered national attention for his work on animal issues. The Humane Society of the United States named Buchanan as its legislator of the year last April, the first time a member of the Florida delegation has received the honor. Buchanan received a 100 score from the Humane Society and fought for some of the group’s top priorities. In 2016, Buchanan brought out the Safeguard American Food Exports (SAFE) Act which bans exporting horses to Mexican slaughterhouses. Buchanan has also led the charge on Capitol Hill to stop domestic slaughterhouses from creating horse meat for human consumption. The Bradenton congressman has also been active in trying to keep manatees covered under the Endangered Species Act. Last year, Buchanan protested the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s decision to downgrade manatees from “endangered” to “threatened.”