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High alert over suspected sale of dog meat in the country

The State Department of Livestock has issued an alert on suspected dog slaughter and the sale of meat in the country.

The Director of Veterinary Services Dr Obadiah Njagi, on Thursday, January 5, 2023, directed county Veterinary officers to take quick and decisive action to protect consumers and the meat trade in the country.

Dr. Njagi said dog meat is not a declared food animal in Kenya, per section 2 of the Meat Control Act.

“This therefore makes it illegal for any person to slaughter any undeclared animal and offer the meat for sale to unsuspecting customers,” he said.

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Dr. Njagi added that such sales constituted fraud, warning consumers of such meat are exposed to zoonotic diseases arising from uninspected meat.

The county directors have also been directed to be extra vigilant to activities such as unscrupulous personal conduct by ensuring that all meat offered for consumption is slaughtered in approved slaughterhouses, duly inspected, stamped, and transported under the control of inspecting officers.

“Surveillance of such activities should be enhanced in collaboration with other relevant government agencies and deterrent action is taken to curb this illegal activity,” he added.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), zoonotic diseases (also known as zoonoses) are caused by germs that spread between animals and people.

“Harmful germs like viruses, bacteria, parasites, and fungi cause zoonotic diseases.

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These germs can cause various illnesses in people and animals, ranging from mild to serious illnesses and even death.

The warning came after a video clip of a man skinning a dog he had slaughtered went viral on social media.

In June last year, police in Nyandarua arrested a man suspected of selling dog meat to unsuspecting buyers in the Wanjohi area, Kipipiri sub-county.

The suspect, Ndirangu Wahome was arrested after a netizen reported to the area chief that he was hawking suspected fried dog meat in a hot pot.

Wanjohi location chief immediately dispatched police officers to arrest Ndirangu Wahome on being notified that the suspect was selling dog meat.

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Police raided the home of the suspected dog meat seller, and upon searching in his compound, they found a slit separate dog head, a sufuria which he used to cook the meat, a blood-stained knife and a blood-stained machete.

A wire which he used to trap the dogs and another live dog that was suspected to be waiting to be slaughtered were also found in the suspect’s home.