Saturday 8 November 2008

Cat and dog cruelty in the Philippines

Sadly there seems to be a lot of cat and dog cruelty in the Philippines; and cruelty to horses and I suppose wild life too.

Having researched animal welfare law in the Philippines I was sickened to bump into a great but shocking website called "It's Their Destiny". This is a phrase used by a trader in dog meat when being asked if he felt bad about the treatment he was dishing out to the dogs. He must have meant that it is a dog's destiny to be brutally and cruelly treated before being savagely killed and then eaten. I wonder where he got that idea from? The same treatment must be handed out to feral cats too.

Here is one example only of the practice of rounding up stray (and perhaps non-stray) dogs or cats (or anything with four legs that moves) as if they were farm livestock. It is not current but all the more shocking for that. It happened in 2002 and comes from the It's Their Destiny website. Why am I repeating it? The more people who speak out the better and this site might be seen more that the other.

It concerns the dog (and cat?) meat business in Baguio City, which is shown on the map below. We should remember this hellish place for its pain and suffering to which the Filipinos who work there are indifferent.

View Larger Map

Dogs are rounded up and transported in appalling conditions to Baguio City where cat and dog cruelty in the Philippines takes place. They are crammed into trucks. Many dogs die on the way. When this particular truck was stopped in 2002 the drivers were interviewed by the police and released - that's it.

What is shocking is that at that time (since 1998) there was animal welfare legislation in force in the Philippines. The Act is called the THE ANIMAL WELFARE ACT 1998. The purpose of the Act is set out at section 1, which as can be guessed is to promote the welfare of animals. Section 2 purports to control the "animal business" as I have called it. And the penalties are found at section 8. The penalties can be as high as 2 years in prison and a 5,000 pesos fine. The police let these drivers go free and the cruel trade in dog (and cat) meat goes on unabated and undisturbed by the police and the authorities.

Obviously the legislation is little more than a PR exercise to present to the world the idea that the Philippines is behaving in a civilized manner in relation to animal welfare. It is not. And, you know, one can learn a lot about a country by the way they treat their pets and wildlife.

Companion animals, cats and dogs are vulnerable creatures. An abuse of vulnerable creatures indicates a callous approach to life. I would expect vulnerable people to be treated badly too.

Feral cat Philippines by .bullish who also published the quote below underneath this sad photograph. Lets remind ourselves that we create the feral cat problem and the suffering.

I could show a dog but (a) this is a cat site and (b) the pictures of the dogs shipped for dog meat are too painful. Don't misunderstand me I am not saying there isn't cruelty in the UK or America etc. there is but not like the dog meat market in the Philippines.


“If you would know a man, observe how he treats a cat.” -- ROBERT HEINLEIN


Perhaps things have improved since 2002 you might say. I think not. The indications are that things continue as before. Corruption and indifference in authority supported by arrogance and ignorance by the perpetrators are the barriers to treating animals properly in the Philippines. There is still plenty of cat and dog cruelty in the Philippines and plenty of work to do to eradicate it. It will take generations I suspect to get things on track.

If you'd like to make a comment please do below. If you'd like to read more please go here: Cats and the Law (this looks at a number of countries and their animal welfare law) or here for more comment and the Philippines Animal Welfare Act 1998 plus some local legislation and more. There are also links to the website mentioned and to some charities.

The Philippines are quite near Vietnam and China two other place where it is considered OK to eat companion animals and kill them brutally before cooking them. (see Cat Meat Philosophy).

One last point cruelty to animals in the Philippines makes people like me depressed. It affects the world generally, making it a worse place for all those that care. And it brutalizes the people who practice animal cruelty making them worse people.

Cat and dog cruelty in the Philippines - Source: It's Their Destiny website.


  1. Thank you for joining with other voices - but not enough by any means - to let the world know of the suffering of animals in these cruel countries. Unthinkable, unspeakable pain, terror, loneliness, betrayal and brutal death is all these creatures are offered. Too sad and angering for words. But, thank you. We cannot forget or keep quiet.

  2. Hi, Thanks for the comment. Yes, many more voices are required. A revolution is required. The world is still a terribly cruel place for animals.

  3. Wen treat much of our livestock the same way and they often suffer through conditions just as bad. This, for the most part is social--it is a cultural perception on how we view these animals. For instance, I'm sure many Hindus would feel sick by the way we raise cattle. Do you know how USA farmers make veal?!

    I love animals, and I have pets of my own--and if you think I'm trying to justify animal abuse, you're wrong. I just think we need to worry about our own country first. We need to stop policing the world--especially when we have those same exact problems--it's hypocritical and it's the reason many other countries dislike us. I wouldn't be as bothered if I didn't believe that if this were some goats or calves from
    there--or any where else for that matter--we wouldn't have heard the story.

  4. Quite bad to know. Animals are like humans they have emotions to feel and animals like dogs and cats are great companions at home.

    I care dogs and cats and feel bad seeing cruelty to them. I have cats at home and I have a cousin dislike cats what she did she throw it away without my consent. I knew it the next day when i found out less numbers of cats at home.

  5. I've travelled over much of Asia, and it's obvious that street cats are treated much worse in the Philippines (where I live now) compared to most other countries in the region.

    Whenever I try to approach a skinny cat in the street here, just to say hello, they almost always run away terrified, whereas in nearby countries such as Thailand they are mostly comfortable around people and look like they've at least been fed.

    Fortunately there are animal charities in the country and plenty of people who do care, but as a poor country there inevitably isn't much in the way of funding, and few people seem to make the effort to have their animals neutered. If I settle here permanently I'll do what I can to help, even if that just means adopting a few critters!

    1. Thanks for commenting Dave. Is it really all about how wealthy country is as to whether they treat their street cats well or not? That seems to be the case but it also seems to be a very poor attitude because poor people are just as able to treat a stray cat well as a wealthy person. Anyway, I'm pleased that if you do settle in the Philippines he would consider adopting some homeless cats. Well done.


Your comments are always welcome.

Featured Post

i hate cats

i hate cats, no i hate f**k**g cats is what some people say when they dislike cats. But they nearly always don't explain why. It appe...

Popular posts