Animal welfare charity PETA has created a stir with its latest campaign by comparing enjoying a Christmas Day turkey dinner to tucking into a pet dog.
“If you wouldn’t eat your dog, why eat a turkey?” is the question posed via social media and London bus ads.
“Turkeys, just like the dogs and cats we share our homes with, have feelings and the capacity to experience pain,” wrote PETA on their blog. “In the U.K., they typically spend their short lives in a space two-thirds the size of an opened broadsheet newspaper. Farmed turkeys are bred to have such large breasts that they can’t mate naturally and sometimes can barely walk. These birds are intensively confined, have part of their beaks cruelly cut off, are pumped full of grains laced with antibiotics and are slaughtered when they’re only 5 months old.
“We hope the ads help Londoners realise that there’s no need for turkeys to suffer for a meal, especially when there are plenty of delicious vegan roasts on the market. By serving up a plant-based meal, people can spare sensitive, highly intelligent animals a lifetime of misery in the industrialised meat industry.”
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While many U.K. vegans are showing their support for the campaign on social media, some people have slammed the comparison between turkeys and dogs.
“Excellent campaign. Well done PETA,” commented Matt Taylor on PETA’s Facebook page. “Amazing how people in Britain object to animal cruelty, love their dogs and animals in general — and then eat an animal which has been executed for dinner!”
However Josh Armstrong echoed the views of many, posting: “The money you spend on this campaign, could have been better spent protecting animals. Selling or promoting an idea on a negative, will not get you your desired effect. Convincing people they can make a difference and being positive with your messaging would have been far more constructive and probably made people take note. As a nation obsessed with their pets (dogs in particular) you are just going to come across immature and alienate yourselves to the people you want to persuade (sic).”
And then there are those who have revealed they actually wouldn’t have any problem eating dog alongside their roast potatoes and sprouts on Christmas Day. “What’s the problem?” said Taylor Robinski. “Meat is meat.”