Several hundred people joined a candlelight vigil in front of Sao Domingos Church in the city centre last night to remember a dog that was killed two weeks ago by the caretaker of a government-run recycling centre who admitted he was going to cook and eat it.
The vigil, which was organised by the Abandoned Animals Protection Association of Macau (AAPAM), was also joined by members of the Hong Kong Non-Profit Making Veterinary Service Society and the ad hoc Hong Kong 18 Districts Animals Protection Commissioners to draw attention to animal cruelty in Macau and the pressing need for an animal protection law.
AAPAM Vice President Josephine Lau Pui Chan told those attending, some who had taken their dogs to the vigil with them, that the government had been spending over five years drafting a bill to protect animals, taking reference from nearby regions and other countries, but that still nothing had been submitted to legislators.
AAPAM President Yoko Choi Wing Chi said that nothing could be done in the latest known local case of dog slaughter even though the culprit admitted to the killing.
“In previous cases the police would say they couldn’t do anything about animal abuse because there was no evidence,” Choi was quoted by The Macau Post Daily as saying, adding: “But now that they’ve caught the man, there’s proof [photos] and he even admitted that he was going to eat the dog after he killed it and still they can’t do anything because there is no law.”
According to previous reports byThe Macau Post Daily, the man hanged the dog on a tree, after which he singed off its fur and cut it into pieces, preparing the carcass for the cooking pot.
The 64-year-old caretaker told police later that he decided to kill and eat the dog because it was always fighting with other dogs at the centre in Taipa.
The slaughter came to light after a resident living nearby had tipped off police. The resident also took photos of the incident.
Mark Mak, president of the Hong Kong Non-Profit Making Veterinary Service Society, who was in Macau to show Hong Kong’s support for animal protection, said that it made them very angry to hear that people in Macau who kill a dog or cat to eat it are merely fined a couple of hundred patacas.
However, the man was not fined for killing the dog and preparing to cook it, which is not illegal in Macau as long as it is not done for commercial purposes, but merely because he left an animal carcass in a public place.(macaunews)