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Tourists tricked into eating dog meat in Bali

Oscar Rousseau

By Oscar Rousseau+

19-Jun-2017

Dog meat was allegedly sold to tourists who had no idea what they were eating
Dog meat was allegedly sold to tourists who had no idea what they were eating

Holidaymakers are unwittingly eating dog meat on the Indonesian island of Bali, according to an Animals Australia investigation, raising questions about food safety and animal abuse. 

Tourists are being “duped” into buying satay meat sticks by local dog meat gangs who are prepared to “lie” about the origin of the meat, according to investigators.

Dog meat consumption, while controversial, is legal in Indonesia but the probe by Australia’s largest animal protection agency uncovered “horrifying” animal abuse and “major” food safety problems.

Gangs were filmed force-feeding poison to dogs and puppies, as well as slaughtering the animals on filthy floors.

Food safety flaws

Samples of raw dog meat have tested positive for traces of coliform bacteria and E.coli.

This evidence suggests the dog meat trade “is breaching local food safety and animal cruelty laws,” according to Animals Australia’s director of investigations, Lyn White.

Not only is poisoned meat entering the dog meat trade, a sample of raw dog meat tested showed the meat was contaminated with high levels of coliform bacteria and E.coli, which are commonly associated with faecal contamination and can cause serious food poisoning.

Balinese dog meat seller

Balinese dog meat seller

‘Heartbreaking’ abuse

Animals Australia claims to have held meetings with local government officials to crack down on Bali’s dog meat gangs.

Indonesia’s National Agency of Food and Drug Control could not be reached for comment at the time of writing.

Alongside food safety concerns, Animals Australia published graphic footage that shows Bali’s dogs viciously caught by gangs. Vendors were filmed beating and hanging them to death.

Our investigator’s footage of dogs being captured and slaughtered is deeply upsetting," said White, who added: “The suffering of these dogs is nothing short of heart-breaking.

Dogs are captured on the streets and have their mouths tightly bound

Dogs are captured on the streets and have their mouths tightly bound

Dog consumption was brought to Bali by minority Christian ethnic groups, who came to the island looking for work in hospitality. The Island’s first dog meat restaurant, owned by Flores Islanders, opened in 1970.

Around 70,000 dogs are slaughtered per year in Bali, serving some 75 restaurants.

Australia Animals investigation dubbed ‘Bali’s hidden meat trade - and its disturbing connection to Australian tourism’ aired on ABC on Monday 19 June.