Tuesday, October 11, 2011

British Television Chef Says Eating Puppies Is Like Eating Pork


In what I am sure will be a quote that Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall will regret for the rest of his life, or I hope he does anyway, when he was asked whether he would eat a dog. "Not unless I was on the point of starvation. In principle, but not in practice, I have no objection to a high-welfare organic puppy farm." He then went on to say that you cannot say it is ok to eat pork but then not say it is ok to eat puppies. He says that at some point people made the decision to eat one rather than the other and to make the other a pet. I actually feel sick right now.

59 comments:

ms snarky said...

stupid comment, but theoretically, he's completely right. People eat horse meat, dog, cat, etc. It's our western view that it's ok to eat farm animals. Hindus don't believe in eating cow, but our culture is fine with it.

ms snarky said...

what animals are acceptable to eat is completely the result of our culture and conditioning. Personally, I think it's probably wrong to eat anything that's living. and yet, I still eat chicken and fish.

MM said...

I have to agree with him. Not that I want to eat puppies, but it is pretty arbitrary what meats we eat. I try not to let the fact that pigs are incredibly intelligent deter me from my bacon.

lawnjart said...

yeah, i've got to go with him on this.

Lori said...

I totally agree...

ForSure said...

some people keep pigs at pets. But he's right, at some point people in different geographical locations (and religions) said we'll eat this one and not that one, check their hooves, etc, etc, etc. Think of the cultures that point at the US and laugh hysterically because of the money we spend on dogs, getting their claws painted, carrying them around in handbags, etc. They probably think we're the odd ones.

Ice Angel said...

Gotta agree with the masses here. The guy's right, in theory. He doesn't say he would eat a puppy or has eaten puppies. But he's right about it really kind of being the same thing. And as gross as it sounds, if I'm starving and it's me and the puppy-it's din din time! Sorry.

woth dees said...

I also agree with him.

Zuzu Petals said...

He's right... and that's why I stopped eating meat years ago. I used to love bacon but now when I think of eating it I imagine eating one of my dogs and that's enough to stop me from doing it. Although, after all these years I don't even miss it. There comes a point in life when you have to put your money where your mouth is.

Paleo Dame said...

Put me down in the agree column.

AKM said...

He's absolutely right about the pet/dinner dichotomy.

Jolene Jolene said...

I'm with everyone else here. Hypothetically, the guy is right. We are just programmed to think that eating a pig is okay and eating a dog is wrong, when they are both living animals.

shehlaS said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Murphy Brown 2020 said...

I'm shocked by how many people in this thread agree with him. I DEFINITELY concur, and I've always been dismayed by how easy it is for most people to cease contemplating the dog-pig connection when it comes time to eat, say, bacon. I find it remarkably hypocritical how human ethics seem to disappear simply because something *tastes* good and people are too lazy to find compassionate alternatives.

If dogs WERE factory farmed, we'd have a different name for them to differentiate between what we perceive as pets, and what we perceive as food. Pigs are "pork", cows are "beef," and fowl is "poultry," after all.

I'm proud to be a longtime vegetarian -- but I'm also glad that there are chefs like this guy who understand that there's not a lot separating pigs from dogs (perhaps in how they taste, but not when it comes to intelligence).

Oh, and if you buy fur-trimmed shit, just know that some dog in China was probably skinned alive to suit your own sartorial selfishness. Just sayin.'

Okay. This soapbox session is done. *steps down*

Mango said...

I couldn't eat a dog, not even for a million dollars, but that doesn't stop me from routinely nibbling on my cat's thigh and calling it a cutlet.

Mango said...

I couldn't eat a dog, not even for a million dollars, however that doesn't keep me from nibbling on my cat's thigh and referring to it as a "cutlet".

Nosey Parker said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
timebob said...

I prolly wouldn't eat something that is God spelled backwards.

don't eat God!

Nosey Parker said...

I saw skinned dogs, cats and rats at a market in China. I remember a pig in a cage crying like it knew it was going to be someone's dinner.

cosmo said...

dumbing down a bit aren't we?...why the need to lay it on with a shovel about the poor puppies. they're animals, if you eat meat, they're no different to a fluffy cow (bit smaller maybe).

recently it's feeling a bit like you're sliding into pointing and laughing at anything. even when it's not wrong.

hugh is a great chef, interesting commentator on food issues & sustainability, and according to a friend, a really nice man. what he says on this is the way it is. if we all want to have grandchildren who get anywhere near a reasonable quality of life we're going to have to drop the misguided sentiment. the reason dogs are eaten in the far east was simple...there weren't enough prime cuts of beef to go around at one point so dogs got on the menu...and that's going to happen in the west if population continues to rise as it is. so as a man who likes a burger or two i suggest you start to consider if you'd prefer horse, dog, or tiddles the cat?

ok, sorry about that...just hate the over- sentimentalisation of pets that makes it more acceptable to put them before people. in the uk more money is given to animal charities than people charites...is it just me or is that messed up?

RocketQueen said...

I'm also pleasantly surprised to see most people here agree. In tests, pigs have actually been proven to be more intelligent than dogs in many areas, and are the sweetest, most social animals. Good for him for saying it. It would be nice if more people could make the connection.

RocketQueen said...

And cosmo - I give a ton of money to animal charities every year and volunteer for them almost exclusively. To me, the systematic abuse of animals and how OKAY everyone is with the way they are treated on a day-to-day basis is why I think they are worthy of my time and energy.

On the other hand, everyone agrees that domestic abuse and breast cancer (for example) are horrible things that humans have to deal with. Until everyone agrees that the way animals are treated is horrendous, I will continue to make such charities my focus. So no, I don't think that is messed up. And honestly, most days I like animals more than I like the humans on this planet.

msgirl said...

Well since everyone is agreeing I'll play devil's advocate. :D I don't think the difference was an arbitrary thing - dogs have been helping humans for thousands of years with guarding, herding, hunting for food etc, and with that evolved an incredible bond. Dogs ARE man's best friend! I see a dog and I smile, they make me happy.

That said, I haven't been around pigs so don't know anything about bonding with one. Being an urban girl has its disadvantages - never been around livestock really.

I do eat meat, which one day will change, but only from local farms where the livestock eats grass and roams free. I'm lucky to have to access to that, and it actually comes out cheaper because you are buying in such bulk.

Anonymous said...

It's a slippery slope. I'm a meat eater and never intend on stopping. I grew up on pork, poultry and beef. I dissassociate the animals from the food. It's stupid because I can't eat goat or rabbit because I can picture the animal and I just can't get past it. Makes no sense but that's the enigma that is me.

But in some countries/cultures, dog is on the menu.

Anonymous said...

@Cosmo, I see what you're saying. I recently had to put my kitty down. I had her for 17 years but her kidneys were failing and we had to do what's best for her. It's been a week and I still cry several times a day. I loved her more than anything. That said, I recognize that she was an animal and not a child. I took care of her as best I could but never once referred to myself as her "mother" because I find that messed up.

But people give to the charity they want to and I can't begrudge them of that. When I give to charity, I generally give to missions or food banks, my husband will give to the humane society or other animal groups. His choice, my choice.

Sarah J. MacManus said...

One more for 'he's right' here. Very similar - both omniverous, friendly and intelligent animals. It was still pretty common to eat dog meat when I lived in Korea, so I can't say I've never unintentionally eaten it.

Quite honestly, I feel like a real jerk for still eating pork.

Murphy Brown 2020 said...

@Ms Girl -- Not to nitpick you too much, but have you ever eaten a truffle? If you have, thank a pig! They help humans hunt for food, too.

@anita_mark -- I'm sorry for your loss. You have the right to mourn your kitty as much as you want, you know. Seventeen years is a long time to know and love a creature of *any* species.

Smasherstein said...

Yes cosmo, it is just you. Animals can't help themselves the way humans can. And RQ - I'm totally with you on liking animals more than humans.

I've always refused to eat highly intelligent animals like pig and octopus and am now beginning the process to become a pescatarian: I'm very slowly cutting out certain foods so I no longer crave it. My bf is a vegetarian and believes you should only eat what you can kill.

The Black Cat said...

Well this certainly made me think differently. Humane societies in North America are filled to capacity with cats. Maybe we should start eating them? They are my most favourite animal to be sure but it seems like an obvious solution to cat overpopulation has been missed.

This chef is right, meat is meat regardless of the source. I like the theory of vegetarianism but enjoy the taste of meat too much to give it up. I have been eating less of it over the years but I do enjoy it, lamb and bacon being my favourites. I used to live near a sheep farm that had a sign out front saying they had fresh cuts available. When I first moved to the area I told myself I would have to stop in and get some. But then spring came and I saw the cute lambs outside running around enjoying themselves and I just couldn't bring myself to stop in there.

Pigs are nasty creatures and will eat anything, literally. I grew up in the country and as a child was told to stay away from the pigs and to never go near them by myself. These were not "pet" pigs.

msgirl said...

Octopus are intelligent? Never knew that!

Ida, no I've never eaten a truffle, but still your point is made.

anita - yeah, it's not rational but I get what you're saying.

Most people get their meat from the supermarket where it's all packaged and easily disassociated from the animal it was. When I go to pick up my 1/4 steer straight from the butcher, it gives me shudders. But my boys are carnivores so I'm doing the best I can. Personally, I don't eat much meat, fish and the beef from the farm and even some of that beef I'll pass on.

But I don't judge anyone who does eat meat, just wish there were far more stories in the news of the horror of the industry.

The Black Cat said...

Msgirl, there are lots of horror stories online for anyone who wishes to make themselves available to it.
If the nightly news started showing how farm operations work the public would give up meat in droves. Seriously. Why do you think those beef farmers sued Oprah?

Missy said...

There's nothing wrong with his comments.

FrenchGirl said...

he totally is right!
for example,in North of Thailand& Korea,some people eat dogs

selenakyle said...

I agree with him.

Lexy said...

Thank you RocketQueen! I'm with you 100% I raised a pig as a child--I bottle-fed her as a piglet and loved her through her adulthood. My current pet is an English Bulldog, and let me tell you that my former pig (RIP Lucy) and my current Bully are so, so similar. They're both intelligent, loving, loyal, goofy, and they wait for my return with baited breath. If I had one wish, I truly would save all factory farmed animals from their misery and never let another animal be tortured for food.

jen said...

RocketQueen said...

And cosmo - I give a ton of money to animal charities every year and volunteer for them almost exclusively. To me, the systematic abuse of animals and how OKAY everyone is with the way they are treated on a day-to-day basis is why I think they are worthy of my time and energy.

On the other hand, everyone agrees that domestic abuse and breast cancer (for example) are horrible things that humans have to deal with. Until everyone agrees that the way animals are treated is horrendous, I will continue to make such charities my focus. So no, I don't think that is messed up. And honestly, most days I like animals more than I like the humans on this planet.






Sorry to copy & paste so much but I agree with everything you said here. Thanks for saying it ♥

anita_mark -I too am sorry for your loss. I lost one in 2008 to diabetes, and one in 2009 from old age. It still hurts every day. Hugs to you.

And I DO refer to myself as "mummy" to my cats. I am WELL AWARE that they are not my children lol, but I love them, take care of them, and worry about their welfare. I AM their mummy ;)

msgirl said...

Aw, Lexy, that is so sweet about your pig.

I did give up pork quite awhile ago.

Seachica said...

I know this is going to be controversial, but why are people so up in arms about the idea of eating dogs, cats, or -- in the vegetarian crowd, more common meats such as pig or cow? We are humans, an omnivorous species. We eat plants, we eat meat. That's the way we were created.

RocketQueen said...

Seachia - omnivorous means we can eat both, not that we MUST. And in fact, there are cultures all over the world that have been vegetarian or vegan since the beginning of their recorded time (there's an amazing tribe in Tibet I wish I could recall right now...) and of course entire regions (southern india comes to mind) that don't eat animals. What's perfectly normal to one culture is perfectly disgusting to another, which I think was the point of what Whittingstall was trying to say. I choose not to eat animals because I don't *have* to, and I feel better getting my nutrients from plants. It's not controversial, it's just personal choice.

Green Tara said...

@Ida: Perfectly and eloquently stated. I realized 22 years ago that I had no business deciding between a pig, a cow, a cat, or a dog, and have been a vegetarian ever since.

shehlaS said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
mooshki said...

I stopped eating pork, because pigs are cool. I can't imagine I'll ever stop eating poultry, though. Chickens are idiots.

Jasmine said...

@Shela- As a vegatarian I make sure and take a really good multi vit that has variants of the A's, B's and C's, in addition to all the other stuff you need, just in case I cant eat alllll the things Im supposed to throughout the day.

People often remark how hard it must be to be a vegetarian, but it's so easy. Sunday I had an egg on toast, yesterday I had cottage cheese and frut, and today I had peanut butter with flaxseed on crackers. All fun ways to get your protein and good fats and in my opinion MUCH healthier than a sausage patty or bacon strips (sorry Enty!).

I find unexpected vitamins in vegetarian friendly food sources. For instance did you know that dark leafy greens are a better source of calcium for your body to absorb than MILK?! How cool is that?
While he is point is excellently well taken it should really be used as a stepping stool toward getting the non-meat pyramid really out there in mainstream Western societies. There are a lot of places in the U.S and I bet Canada too that dont even realize one can even SURVIVE without meat. Education is key in evolving people's personal choice. I remember learning that I didnt have to eat meat to be healthy when I was in middle school- it floored me! And when I became a complete vegetarian at 18, it helped to make that transaction smoother.

Sometimes you tell people you want to raise your kids vegetarin and they act like you said you want to raise em to not believe in Santa Claus! But I digress... yes he made a great point, and I too am so happy most everyone on here agrees with that.

Jasmine said...

*PEOPLE, not places

mygeorgie said...

I eat meat. There, I said it. Pork, beef, chicken, fish. I won't eat anything cute (even though i adore cows & pigs) Not going to eat dog or cat, knowingly at least.

I'm sure there are plenty more carnivors on this blog, but alas, everyone's ashamed/afraid to say so on here. Insane.

ftr, our family adopts/funds heavily at wild animal sanctuaries across Western Canada. Vegetarians/Carnivors are equally charitable ;)

mygeorgie said...

Ian, the little Britsh chap with the bad teeth, on that travelling show (can't think of the name)comes to mind...he would so respectfully try different fare at various locations. He may have not enjoyed the food, but he understood that that was what *those* locals ate & he presented it as such: "normal for here". He was spot on, like this chef.

Lelaina Pierce said...

He makes a valid point...and one I've heard many times before.

Anoia said...

Absolutely agree with him. I don't have a problem if people eat dogs or any other animals, but with the treatment prior to the animals death. IIRC the dogs are tortured to death, so their meat tastes better. Or the Japanese with their sick custom of preparing and serving life fish and octopus, google for Ikizukuri and dancing octopus.

"ms snarky said...

what animals are acceptable to eat is completely the result of our culture and conditioning. Personally, I think it's probably wrong to eat anything that's living. and yet, I still eat chicken and fish."

WTF? You know that plants and fungi are living too, right? Life feeds on life.

ms snarky said...

@Anoia -
forgive me for not being absolutely exact in my wording. Issues, anyone?

I have personal misgivings about eating animals. I do it all the time, and really like the taste of meat, but I still have some latent guilt feelings. I could no longer eat lobster after seeing stacks and stacks of them ready to be served to a golf dinner. It seemed like wholesale slaugher.

When you come right down to it, you could make the same 'life feeds on life' argument for eating humans. And I really don't want that to happen.

So keep your knickers on, missy. We respond to blind items in the moment, not after a long session writing a response and showing it to an editor for correctness.

ms snarky said...

oops, meant "slaughter." Another error an editor would have caught! haha

childeroland said...

What he said sounds cruel to us, but the pork or calf we approve of eating is still a life being slaughtered for our consumption, and it's only our cultural norms that differentiate between eating puppies and eating veal.

__-__=__ said...

Remember seeing those beef tongues in the market?? I haven't eaten any of those!

And armadillos! There is armadillo meat in the market sometimes too. I don't think it was road kill either. I guess the 'dillo meat in the market has been checked for leprosy.

I don't eat much chicken, they're too cute with their feathers. Especially the bunny chickens! I'll eat their eggs though. I like those.

We probably should start eating cats with all of them in shelters. People really need to start taking care of them better. They deserve a better life.

I give to animal charities. Animals need help and they can't help themselves. They only need help because of what humans have done to them.

I'm not yet ready to give up bacon wrapped jalepeno peppers stuffed with minced onions and cream cheese. That's real drinkin' food! Makes me want a margarita right now!!

RocketQueen said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
RocketQueen said...

Give me a break, mygeorgie. People on this site talk about eating meat (particularly bacon) all the time. I'm certain every vegetarian here knows we are comfortably the minority. This just HAPPENS to be a post in which vegetarians feel comfortable saying that we don't eat meat. Get over it. We exist, too. Like I said, it's about personal choice. Eat meat or don't, I don't really give a fuck.

Lori said...

i think that if you are poor or hungry enough, you would eat whatever is available. People in parts of mexico and south america also eat dogs because they are very readily available. Btw...for those of you afraid of "exotic" cuts of more traditional sources of meat, most offel are quite delicious. I'm a big fan of cheeks, tongue, etc etc.

Murphy Brown 2020 said...

@Anoia -- "You know that plants and fungi are living too, right?"

Plants and fungi are not *sentient* creatures. Unlike animals, they can't feel pain.

@mygeorgie -- Humans are OMNIVORES, not carnivores. I doubt you and your family eat meat exclusively -- but if you do, have fun dealing with your impending coronaries.

mygeorgie said...

RocketQueen: re "Eat meat or don't, I don't really give a fuck."

Wow, you took that personally.

You're response is exactly what I was referring to with "people are afraid/ashamed to post honestly". So you can go on about your views, but as usual, the same respect is not afforded to others? I don't believe anyone here as ever responded to any of your posts w/ "I don't give a fuck", not even me ;)

Ida: I stand corrected..."omnivore" (must remember that)I eat meat once/week. My bowels & arteries are happy.

RocketQueen said...

Oh please, mygeorgie. The point I was trying to make is that no one is trying to snatch the meat out of your mouth. The fact that you can't handle a few vegetarians coming out of the woodwork shows how intolerant you are. And it's lame.

Danielle said...

@ Mooshki.. thx for that I literally lol'd :)

Advertisements

Popular Posts from the last 30 days