In a huge step forward in the fight to ban the consumption of dog and cat meat in the US, the House of Representatives passed the Dog and Cat Meat Trade Prohibition Act 2018  (H.R. 6720) in a voice vote this week.

The bill — sponsored by Republican Rep. Vern Buchanan and Democratic Rep. Alcee Hastings —  bans the slaughter, transport, possession, and trade of dogs and cats for human consumption. It also outlaws the trade of dog and cat meat between states and internationally, with a maximum fine of $5000. Currently, only six states have regulations banning dog and cat meat.

“As the House of Representatives also calls for the end of the dog and cat meat trade globally, it is important to that we hold ourselves to the same standards we wish to see in others,” said a statement released by Alcee Hastings following the bill’s success. “ H.R.6720 makes that commitment, and I urge the Senate to take up this important bill without delay.”

The next step is for the bill to pass through Senate and be enacted by the president.

“More than half the households in America have a dog or cat as part of their family,” Congressman Vern Buchanan said. “We should send a clear message that slaughtering these beloved animals for food is unacceptable and will be punished.”

A further resolution was passed in which the House calls upon numerous countries, such as China, South Korea, Indonesia and more, to join the US in banning the dog and cat meat trade. The dog meat industry in these countries is horrific, with tens of millions of animals brutally slaughtered every year.

“There is no place in our compassionate society for these practices,” said Congresswoman Claudia Tenney. “This bill is a reflection of America’s values, and sends a strong message to all nations that we will not stand for this inhumane and cruel treatment.”

If you haven’t done so already, sign Lady Freethinker’s petition in support of this bill, ensuring that the Senate supports this important step for animal welfare.

SIGN: Ban Killing Dogs and Cats for Meat in the US