Where and Why Are Dogs Eaten?
Most Americans and other Westerners would not normally think of eating a dog. It would take starvation to force us to it, unless our name happened to be Barack Hussein Obama. Why don't we eat dogs? There doesn't really seem to be any good reason not to, if we are willing to eat other animals. A quick check of Wikipedia shows that even in many European countries, including Germany and France dogs were eaten until very recently. In a few places, like some parts of Switzerland, they still are!
But in America, I can find no records of regular dog meat consumption. Why is that? America is a child of Britain. Google is supposed to be able to find anything, but it has no hits on dog-eating in Britain. I tried the BBC website, and there are no articles on the eating of dogs, except one lonely hit about a Chinese restaurant rumored to have dogs in the freezer.
Our early American culture was brought over from Britain. Even though people from many countries later came, and brought their food traditions with them, they didn't bring dog eating, or they gave it up quickly once they got here. Since mass starvation has never been a common problem in America, there was no pressing need for us to look around for other animals to eat.
Now, I am sure the occasional dog was eaten, perhaps during the Civil War or by families in hard times, but it never caught on. Desperate people will eat anything, including dog, cat or rat. Americans, and now Europeans are just not that hungry.
So Where Do They Eat Dogs?
Where do they eat dogs? Dog meat is still commonly eaten in many countries, and less commonly in many more, from Asia, to Africa and Europe. In China, dog has been on the menu since ancient times, and still is. Korea is another country well known for snacking on dog. They even have special breeds of dogs that are only for food, and rarely kept as pets, called Nureongi. They are cute, yellow fuzzballs.
Dog is even eaten in Japan, according to some sources. But they all quote the same figure of five tons in one year, taken from a single source that has not been updated. I lived in Japan for fifteen years and never heard of anyone buying, selling or eating dog. My father-in-law, a Japanese butcher, never had dog for sale.
Vietnam (warning, graphic picture at that link), Thailand, and The Philippines are also often mentioned as countries where dogs are eaten. I haven't been to Vietnam or The Philippines, but I can believe it of Thailand. Like the Chinese, there is very little that walks or crawls they won't eat! (I say that in admiration, not condemnation.) I saw restaurants selling snakes and scorpions and locusts for sale by street vendors. If you love to eat wonderful food, try Thailand. Thai food outside Thailand just is not the same!
How To Cook Dog Chinese Style
This video shows the process of preparing dog-meat Chinese style. It is in Chinese, but with English subtitles. Perhaps we can get some ideas for our next family get-together? Funny. Recommended viewing if a bit graphic. Dog-lovers, the sensitive and perhaps Vegans might want to avoid this one.
Chinese Home Cooking!
CNN's Emily Chang Is Shocked, Shocked! To Discover Dog Meat In China.
The delightful Emily Chang, reporting for CNN in the video below, seems a bit unhappy as she interviews dog-meat sellers in China, and visits a dog-meat restaurant. The poor lady, though a graduate magna cum laude of Harvard University, appears a mite short on empathy for folks from other, foreign cultures. I suggest that she attempt adopting a more open, tolerant and liberal viewpoint. She is brave though. She was arrested by Chinese police for her courage in wearing a shirt sporting a political message not approved by the Chinese authorities.
Obama Eats Hitler's Dog!
An evergreen video, useful for all occasions. What with the recent froo-de-frau over our noble presidential candidates' treatment of dogs, naturally someone had to go and put relevant subtitles on this video clip. Not for the humor-disabled.
Obama Ate Hitler's Dog!
Have I Eaten Dog?
Have I ever eaten dog meat? No, nor cat meat. I have traveled in many countries, and have yet to see them on sale.
In Guatemala, I ate armadillo, and man, that was the best dark meat I ever had. What is so funny is, as I was walking with a friend through the mountains, we passed a young peasant lad, maybe 10 or 12 years old, and he showed us the armadillo he had just caught, still alive. We continued on, and soon came to a small village. We stopped in the little cantina and asked what was on the menu that day. Nuf said. Mmmmm.
In Japan, quite by accident I ate whale. No idea what species. We were in a bar, chosen for the cheapness of the beer, and tried reading the menu. Our Japanese reading skills being poor, we caught the word 'steak'. Not knowing that 'Kujira' means whale, and 'Kujira Suteki' means whale steak, we ordered it. The cook went to a fridge and returned with a brick of meat. It was the size, shape and color of a red brick. He slapped it down on the hot griddle and seared it top and bottom, and placed it in front of us. It had a nasty, oily, fishy taste. I felt bad about ordering it and not being able to eat it all. He also offered us a few bites of whale blubber. it was crunchy and chewy and basically tasteless. Raw, of course.
But, to date, no dogs, no cats nor rats on my menu. Perhaps on my next trip to Asia... Or not. One mustn't be too conservative or narrow minded when dealing with other cultures, after all. I would hate to be accused of ethnocentrism. I would sure hate it if Indians came to my country and started telling me not to eat cow, or if Muslims or Jews tried to ban pork. Love all and leave people alone.
A message of tolerance...
Acts Of The Apostles Ch. 10 Vs. 9-16
On the morrow, as they went on their journey, and drew nigh unto the city, Peter went up upon the housetop to pray about the sixth hour: And he became very hungry, and would have eaten: but while they made ready, he fell into a trance, and saw heaven opened, and a certain vessel descending unto him, as it had been a great sheet knit at the four corners, and let down to the earth: Wherein were all manner of four-footed beasts of the earth, and wild beasts, and creeping things, and fowls of the air. And there came a voice to him, Rise, Peter; kill, and eat. But Peter said, Not so, Lord; for I have never eaten any thing that is common or unclean. And the voice spake unto him again the second time, What God hath cleansed, that call not thou common. This was done thrice: and the vessel was received up again into heaven.
CS Lewis And Dogs C.S Lewis had some interesting things to say about how dogs view us.
Who Ate The Dog? Comment Here.
miscellaneous on March 05, 2017:
I saw frozen dog meat in a Chinese store in Tokyo today and also read a blog written in Japanese that dog cuisine is served in some non Japanese restaurants in Japan. I am quite shocked about this :( I didn't know dog eating was so open here.
Anonymous on May 07, 2016:
In Thailand, only people who live in rural isolated areas eat dogs...it is NOT a norm here.
Gingrich on October 20, 2014:
Mongolians ,for example , don't eat dogs, have never eaten them. Mainly because dogs are carnivores and scavengers, and they are useful animals.
Basically all countries south and east of China eat them. Starvation will force anyone to eat dogs and even turn into cannibals, that's the fact!
peachy from Home Sweet Home on September 12, 2014:
i know that china east dog meat, cat meat and snake meat. Its their customs and delicacy but MAN...I can't bear to eat them, I love cats and dogs
tmbridgeland (author) from Small Town, Illinois on January 12, 2014:
Yes, agree. In the 15 years I lived there, I never heard of anyone eating dog. I don't think Japanese eat dog. I think Wiki is wrong.
lol on January 12, 2014:
Wikipedia says Japan in importing 5 tons of dog meat but that is incorrect. I checked the source and it was not dog meat but dog skin（犬皮）. Also as a Japanese, I have never ate dog meat lol.
tmbridgeland (author) from Small Town, Illinois on February 25, 2013:
I'd have to be pretty hungry to eat a pet. Dog in a Chinese restaurant? Sure.
KittHill on February 25, 2013:
I think the Native Americans that were here before the Europeans came and took over ate dog. We have domesticated them as pets, so they have becomes part of the family. In other countries it is no different than eating duck, chicken, deer. They are animals and it all depends on how you view them. My dog guards my home and family; I would not eat him.