An MP has introduced a bill in Parliament to ban the consumption of dog meat in the UK, making it illegal to eat dog meat and to transport, possess or donate it for the purposes of consumption.

When introducing the bill, Conservative MP Bill Wiggin said there was no evidence that dog meat was being consumed in the UK (as it stands the practice isn’t banned, but no slaughterhouses in the UK that have a licence to kill dogs or cats) but he “would like our country to join in setting an example to the world”.

“This is because China argue that until we make it illegal, why should they?”

Wendy Higgins from the Humane Society International, well-known for its campaigning to end the brutal trade, believes the move could have diplomatic benefits, telling K9 Magazine:

“The power of a UK ban on dog and cat meat would be largely symbolic because Britain has no dog and cat meat trade, there is no evidence to suggest that anyone is eating dogs and cats here. The real job of ending this brutal and largely crime-fuelled trade lies in seeing more bans enacted across Asia where the trade is concentrated.

“So, as we urge policy makers in those countries to take decisive steps to end this trade that kills 30 million dogs and 10 million cats a year, a ban here in the U.K. would show solidarity with those like Taiwan and Hong Kong that have already introduced bans, as well as encourage the momentum that we are already seeing in South Korea and Indonesia towards an end to this brutal industry.

“Whilst I don’t see any indication that countries like China are waiting for a UK ban before acting themselves, it certainly doesn’t hurt diplomatically.”

Mr Wiggin’s bill passed to second reading unopposed in Parliament but needs government support to progress further.

If it is written into law, the UK will join the USA, Germany, Austria, South Australia, Taiwan and Hong Kong in banning dog meat consumption.

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