More than one million Australians travel to Bali each year, indulging in the beaches, culture, and food that the island has to offer, but according to an animal rights group, they might be getting more than they bargained for. Animals Australia revealed that the group has conducted an undercover investigation on Bali’s meat trade, and it revealed that dog meat is being served to unsuspecting tourists.
While eating dog meat isn’t illegal in Bali, animal cruelty and endangering humans by serving contaminated meat both are, according to Australia’s ABC 7.30.
In video footage obtained by Animals Australia, a street vendor admits to selling dog meat, but when he approaches tourists, he says that it’s a “mystery bag” of “satay.”
“Tourists will walk down a street, they'll see a street store selling satay, but what they are not realizing is the letters ‘RW’ on the store mean it is dog meat being served,” Lyn White, campaign director at Animals Australia, told ABC 7.30.
An Animals Australia investigator went undercover as a documentary maker filming about local cuisine. It was then that footage was captured of how the dogs, some being household pets, were obtained. Footage shows dogs being trapped in nooses, with legs and muzzles bound by tape. Puppies were also shown being stuffed into bags and driven away to be slaughtered, typically by being shot or poisoned.
Andrew Dawson, director of the New South Wales Poisons Information Centre and head of toxicology at Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, said that the poisoned dog meat is a health risk to humans, specifically the tourists who consume them.
“Firstly, cyanide is not going to be destroyed by cooking. So there will be cyanide throughout the dog's body,” Dawson said. “The actual risk depends upon how much poison is in the dog meat.”
People who consume the meat can experience symptoms such as “feeling nauseated, diarrhea, aches in the muscles and shortness of breath,” but long-term consumption can cause organ and nerve damage.