Shenzhen is set to become the first city in mainland China to ban the eating of dogs and cats, if a draft regulation released by the municipal government in a wider push to restrict the consumption of wild animals is approved.
China’s National People’s Congress have issued an order to ban all consumption of wild animal meat and further restrict the wildlife trade nationwide. The measures are expected to be enshrined in the country’s wildlife protection law later this year.
The ban is a swift response to the Covid-19 outbreak, thought to have originated in wildlife sold at a market in Wuhan, Hubei province in early December.
However, the Shenzhen government’s potential ban on dog and cat meat is framed not as part of an effort to reduce disease transmission, but as an aspect of the special relationship between people and pets, which it has called the “consensus of all human civilisation”.