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does anyone on here butcher/salvage meat from pet cats and/or dogs?

 
Devon Olsen
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i dont mean to offend anyone as im told some are offended by the thought or at the very least are repulsed by the idea of ol' yeller or mr whiskers being eaten for sunday morning brunch - to those of you that are like this i apologize for suggesting such a horrid idea to you

i dont currently, but provided there isnt any kind of medical condition that prevents it i plan to use every salvagable piece of my dog after he dies and if there is ever an over abundance of housecats as there was a couple years ago, i plan to butcher a few at maturity to keep the numbers down to humane levels and make some food out of them

i do NOT hate dogs or cats but see no point in simply throwing their body in the dirt when they die, or throwing them in the trash if theyre small kittens or some such
eating ones pets has saved a lot of people during war and famine but im not really thinkiing just as a famine food, it seems to me to be an unused and wasted resource

questions for anyone knowledgeable:

are there any diseases/ issues one should look for before deciding to keep meat from a cat or dog?
anyone with experience had the opportunity to try multiple breeds of dogs, if so, which ones do you prefer? i know that chihuahua's were originally bred for meat production but am unsure how a border collie would fare on the plate


and an idea, there are a plethora of dogs and cats that people would love to get rid of, or give to a good home, if one were to take such an animal and nurse it to good health and weight, were it not so already, and be certain that the meat was not tainted with some kind of disease, one could potentially get themselves a free, nearly endless supply of meat without having to buy livestock or go hunting
 
John Polk
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If your intentions were known, those "FREE to good home" ads would not apply to you.
Personally, I would think it would be unethical to accept one advertised that way if your intention was to eat it.
They are offering a pet to a caring family, not a hungry family.



 
John Ram
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That is a very radical idea you have there.

i'm a practical kind of a guy, so i would had no problem in killing anithing to eat if the need arose... survival is above almost everything you can kill to eat.


i do know that on occasion chinese restaurants have been detected a few years back that coocked dogs and cats that were served as goat or rabbit. The customers loved it. so it should be tasty.

when an animal dies, he usually dies of something, so he might be ill... so don't eat it... if you kill as a population control measure, then the subjects should be healthy when you kill them...

The other place where you could get that meat would be the local animal control office. do you have them in your country? We do have them, and they shoot down the animals if no one picks them up as pets. It would be more ethical than to eat someone's pet.

I do have found a lot of resistance in discussing such issues(killing animals, not pets, lol - that is too radical to me, lol) on permaculture forums because people are often a bit fundamentalist about their beliefs and try to shove them down other people throats or simply and more polightly segregate you from that moment on. I greet your bluntness and will apreciate you a bit more from this day on because i do apreciate people that speak out frankly.
 
Devon Olsen
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i should say that IF i were to accept them from people giving them away i would not be simply taking them home and killing them as soon as they are ready, nor would i be treating them badly at any point up until slaughter, as i see it the only difference between me and someone else taking them to a good home would be that mine would likely die when i decided rather than from cause not chosen by me or the animal, and that being the case i could control how long it took them to die, i.e. upon butchering they would be happy up until the last second and comforted, and then they would be dead... whereas with other causes they may die slowly or painfully
my intent isnt just to scam these people into giving me free meat, but rather to accept the dog as a pet and treat it as one, and when the time comes butchering it humanely and using it as efficiently as possible, wasting nothing if at all possible
not to mention, these dogs would likely be eating higher quality food than they ever got from their previous owners and potentially be given more room to run and have less health issues than previously experienced...
i do understand that some are going to view it... "differently"
but to me it seems anything but radical, people eat all kinds of meat all kinds of places for all kinds of reason, and its not just because theyre starving and its ridiculous to think that only the "ugly" animals like sheep, goats, pigs and cows are ok to slaughter, im sure that anyone who has spent the time to raise these animals knows that they have personalities and are individuals as well, yet there is little dispute to most people whether or not it is ethical to kill and eat them when the time comes

i am not advocating senseless slaughter of any animal to quickly/cheaply fill the freezer, nor am i intent on treating the animals anything but humanly
simply looking for any advice or stories from anyone who has experience with these particular animals both alive (diseases and such) and after butchering so as to know what to avoid eating/keep until natural cause of death
 
Maeve Gregory
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If your intent is not to scam people giving their pets away, then why not just tell them what your plans are? Not telling them would be a lie by omission as you *know* that the assumption is that the pet will be allowed to live out their natural life in their new home. Now if you simply want to wait until the animal dies naturally, then I don't see a reason to mention that you'll be eating it once it's dead.

I have no practical advice on butchering as I'm a vegetarian. I just want to add that as a vegetarian I find it ironic when people get bent out of shape at the thought of killing and eating one species of animal when they have no problem eating another.

You can logic all you want about whether or not it's radical to eat dog or cat, but the reality is that it's a taboo in certain parts of the world. You'll have a hard time getting people to accept you breaking that taboo. I have a hard time believing that a person can get enough meat from pet dogs/cats to make the potential social stigma worthwhile. So my only practical advice is to keep mum about it.
 
Matt Smith
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It should be noted that in parts of the world where eating dog is socially acceptable and taken as a matter of course, they don't just roam the streets eating any old kind of dog they run across. Like any other managed livestock, they have particular breeds that have been bred for this purpose.

Also, most domestic dogs have been carefully bred to bond with and serve very specific purposes helpful to humans (a fact so often forgotten in today's world where we just want the ones that appeal to us aesthetically). In this way, using a border collie for meat would be a bit like using a fancy circular saw to drive nails. I guess you could probably do it, but one would have to wonder if that is truly it's best application.

I'm playing fetch with my dog as I type this. This is of course a controversial issue, depending on social norms and personal attachments. I am a dog person, and to me eating my dog would be akin to eating a member of my own family. I personally would prioritize preserving the dignity of my dog's death over gaining a marginal practical benefit, but I certainly don't expect that to be everyone's response.

I bet cats taste terrible.
 
Devon Olsen
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im not doing this simply for practicality, but it seems more respectful to me to use his body for more "practical" (really for lack of a better word at the moment) purposes than just putting him in the ground
simply for practicality, i can just brush him for fiber and make a blanket or jacket or something
as for the right kind of dog, that does make good sense, and though i really only got my dog for being an energetic friend and for hiking and fetch, etc etc i do understand they were bred for herding and other livestock duties but perhaps they would still make decent stew meat if used in a recipe that really covered up the flavor? Im not going ofr best application because i didnt get him just for eating, i got him for other things and would like to eat him when the time comes - realise im saying htis now thinking its a great idea, but when the time came to butcher him i might have a lotta trouble doing it, even if he is suffering a lot...

i cant find much for how cats taste, can only found a couple recipes looking online real hard and that aint got uch for flavor description
but you may just be right

i am also mostly posting this to figure it out now, years before i expect my dog to be the one i eat - im not currently looking to go through criagslist, thatd just be something i would do if i was having a hard winter or something and didnt have money or food left to get any kind of meat, or if i was in some kinda society that i had trouble buying any meat in due to cost or high taxes or something rediculous like that
and its almost just somethign to know out of curiosity for the most part
but i agree it would be more honest to say that "hey im gonna take em, give em a good life until theyre getting to the point of suffering, and then rather than letting them suffer really bad i'll be humanely butchering them and using every part of them i can find a use for."


on a side note, my boss shared some horse jerky with me today, not too bad - seemed kinda light as meat goes, if that makes any sense
 
Alder Burns
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If you can find a copy, check out Horace Kephart's book "Camping and Woodcraft"....published in 1916, I think. This amazing Appalachian woodsman includes recipes and detailed butchering instructions for every imaginable odd critter. He mentions that during the Franco Prussian War in 1870, highly cultured and civilized Paris was besieged for some months, during which people ate most of the animals in the zoos and their pets, bringing their culinary skills to bear. Both critters make mediocre meat, according to him. But I've put many a mediocre meat into a mighty fine curry, including rats and dog. But then, I lived for three years in Bangladesh, a very hungry place, where food taboos prevented most people from eating these and quite a few other critters.
 
Devon Olsen
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thank you very much for the contribution there Alder, ill look for that and add it to my list of books!
 
wayne stephen
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This nation was founded by people who ate dog and horse meat { read The Journals of Lewis and Clark }. The original founders - Those who walked across the Bering Straits - also lived off dog flesh and later horse . I do not believe you will ever find a receptive audience for this idea though. I know Jewish and Muslim people who have added pork to their diet , but no one eats puppies. Actually , my cousin ate dog with his wifes family in the Phillipines. But they are divorced now and he would not eat his dog. I for one do not eat larger land predators - mammals or large birds - but I would if famine was upon me. Smaller predators such as chickens and raccoons are ok by me though. I do not eat sea mammals or apes. I cooked a Lions Paw in a restaurant once and felt filthy inside. So , the morality of all this is very liquid and will be through out time and culture , my prediction. What to do with those dead dogs and cats though ? John Seymour tells of an orchardist who retrieved dog carcasses from the local dog pound and buried them way below the root balls of young apple trees. When the tree matured the roots were able to reach the calcium from the dogs bones and benefited from it. You could grow fly larva for chickens with the meat . You would then have trusting freinds left who would accept your invitation to dinner. Perfect use for a chicken killing dog , poetic. Cat and dog organ meats for catfish bait.
What to do with the skins ? Mark Paulines Survival REsearch Lab performances - half machine half flesh cyborgs battling it out for your entertainment. Orville the Flying Cat. I knew a woman in Phoenix who did punk rock taxidermy. She altered a Barbie doll into a Black Leather Dominatrix with actual crow wings and cowl , very sexy . I don't know if you are just screwing around , but this post has me thinking too much!
 
Renate Howard
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There was a big stink years ago that the Chinese coat factories were using dog fur to line coat hoods. So folks do tan the hides. Pat Colbey, natural goat care guru, even mentioned in her book that she tans the hides of her favorite goats to have something around to remember them by.

Harvey Ussery has a pretty good description of how to do a maggot farm to turn meat into chicken feed on his site http://www.themodernhomestead.us/article/feeding-chickens-maggots.html
 
Galadriel Freden
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Something to consider if eating pets: veterinary drugs. With the horsemeat scandal currently rocking the UK, I'm concerned about having injested possibly toxic veterinary drugs--as horses are not raised for their meat, but as racers or pets, and so get unregulated chemicals which are potentially unsafe to humans. Same with dogs and cats.
 
Devon Olsen
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that is a very important consideration there, thank you
and due to that i think ill avoid eating my current dog - hasnt had anything recently but when he was young they gave him shots and all that stuff - might be some bad stuff there
 
Matu Collins
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I agree that it is weird for people to get all bent out of shape about eating one species over another. The current horse meat scandal in England is a great example- these people knew they were eating cows, and they couldn't taste the difference!

I would not eat pet cat or dog meat for the reason of veterinary drugs also, but even more than that, the toxic nature of commercial pet food. They put any meat or protein scrap that is not legal for human consumption in there, including ground up cancerous tumors, never mind the GMO and chemical bonanza. Plus, pets themselves often die of cancer.

Also, any healthy pet will be very active and probably have pretty tough meat, and not much of it unless it's a pretty big dog. I must admit here that the pet animals I tend to adore the most are pretty big dogs. I'm ok with the idea of eating dogs and cats in general, but eating my own constant loving loyal companion would probably be hard. I still mourn the dear fellow who died two years ago pretty hard. I lost my appetite and wept for weeks, long after the meat would have been no good. That said, my husband encourages me to eat him when he dies. I suspect I may be even more distraught at that time, although there is plenty of good meat on his bones and he spends plenty of time on the couch.

So, in theory it seems ok, but in practice I think it would take famine for me. Also, I agree that you would have to be upfront with the folks you got the animals from to be ethical and the Disney-fied world we live in is full of people and organizations who would spring into action to paint you as a monster. I shudder to think of the facebook and petition campaigns.
 
Kelly Smitherson
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there was a dude out here a couple years ago doing this, he became infamous in the area, in a unpleasant light, I want to say he wrote a cookbook even. It was good for animal rescue groups, it gave a real boogie man to make folks be more careful about dumping free boxes of kittens if they cared about them not getting eaten by snakes or people or whatever

one difference in the areas where it is the cultural norm to eat cats and dogs is that no one is asking for other's free pets to do so, often the community/families are self sufficient in getting their cats and dogs and do not have to involve another community of people who do not feel the same way-- and when the two communities do clash on it, it brings a lot of unwanted attention

even on CL when someone is selling a pig or whatever, when they say it is for a pet home only, not food, I do not lie to them about how it will be a pet, but will also end up in the freezer -- but that is just me

I hear you on the horse meat vs cow meat, I think if folks spent more time with cows they would have those same feelings about cow meat as horse meat, pigs to dogs etc etc

for me, I would not eat an older meat scavenging animal, or a commercial kibble cat/dog feed animal, but I also don't eat meat from grocery stores and have a long pretentious list of what meat I will eat, and it pretty much is only meat I raised and killed myself at this point -- but to each their own
 
wayne stephen
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For myself it is a matter of relationship. My horse interacts with me in a way that reveals intelligence and "horsonality". My cat does too. I had a Siamese named Nervous Nelson that we rescued - A little inbred - had a panic disorder. They are not part of my family but they are not livestock either. When Nervous Nelson began to lose weight we took him to a vet - he had Feline A.I.D.s - I had him euthanized right then . Partly because I did not want him to suffer, partly because I am not forking out the bucks for a chronically sick pet. My relationship with pets has a limit. I will say that there much evidence to state that not allowing horses to be butchered for meat or pet food has led to a surplus of unwanted horses. These are hard to find homes for and often suffer abuse and neglect. It all boils down to sentimentality.
 
Renate Howard
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There are a lot of people who have pet pigs, chickens, goats, even cows. They wouldn't eat THOSE but would eat other pigs, chickens, cows, etc. Some are special to you and you don't want to eat them. On the other hand, plenty of dairy farmers who love a certain cow will butcher her and eat her if she needs to be euthanized. It's more a matter of practicality - they're pretty hard to bury and the meat tastes good. And there's a lot of it.

We had to put down our pet goat - damaged a disc in his back and became paralyzed in the back legs. He could have healed except then he injured his front leg from the strain of compensating for the mostly numb back legs and then he gave up and refused to try. Turns out he weighed 160 lbs and we got 95 lbs of meat and bones for the dogs which will last them quite a while, plus a gorgeous rug. The guts we fed to the pigs and they got really fat from all the fat around the organs.

Which brings up another point - you can also feed deceased pets to your pigs and then eat them. We always do that with chickens, rabbits, etc. that get killed by predators. I've had too many animal "graves" dug up by predators at night when not carefully buried. For the sake of my other animals I don't want to attract any predators to my farm. The pigs take care of it for me and don't mind doing it.
 
Devon Olsen
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as this thread has progressed the responses have gotten a lot more in depth and intelligent, i'd like to thank everyone for taking the time to think about and respond with their own personal take on it, its giving some useful views on the matter
 
Kat deZwart
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Interesting thread. Just a few thoughts:

Right now here in Europe there's major upheaval because there's been horsemeat been sold as beef. The scam is one thing and a major reason to stay away from massproduced meatproducts, but the eating of horses: what do people think? I know friends who bought their girl a "better" pony three times, selling of the other ones. Yet they are appaled that horsemeat is eaten. With the current economic state a lot of Blazes, Blackies and Snowies end up as hamburgermeat, that's just the reality. I love horses (both ways), would not neccessarily eat my own riding/pet horse just for cravings, but feel no remorse using and honouring an animal after dead. I would use the skin to make a shamanic drum, maybe feed the meat to my cats/dogs... And if I was extremely hungry in a SHTF-situation, well, then all limits are off, but still my horse would be quite far back on the menu.

When my petrabbits died (at 7 and 11 years of age, so no good eating) it was the dead of winter, I took them to the forest and left them there for the foxes to eat. If they ate my rabbits flesh, they would survive another day, and so would another, still alive prey animal. So in not burrying my pets, I might have saved two lives (and it saved me digging a hole in frozen ground). A lot of people here let their pet-rabbits breed like, well, rabbits. They give the babies away to "good homes" but I do believe that many end up in a good stockpot. Who is to blame for the dead of the rabbit then, the person taking the animal, or the person letting their animals breed like crazy? In my opinion, when you give an animal away, you loose the right to have a say in what happens to it. If you don't want your bunny eaten, than don't give it away. And if you let your rabbits breed because "its cute" and then cringe at the thought of them being eaten later on in life, then there's something wrong in your moral book.

When taking other peoples animals, whether it be rabbits, cats or cows, I would always be wary of both disease and medicineuse prior to consuming any products of the animal. So, I would tend to them for a while, make sure they are healty and happy, before commencing. Probably I would by then become so attached to them so they'd go from food to pet-status though. That's the main reason I don't yet slaughter any animals of my own. I think I would have a zoo and an empty freezer I'm a bit of a wuss that way. Luckily I have a bio-dynamic farmer around the corner who keeps different animals. I know the names of the animals in my freezer, I have seen them and petted them, but they were not my own.

Just to resume:
I believe that one may have an emotional adversation to eating some or all animals, and that is okay;
I believe that all life feeds itself on other life (that carrot is also pulled out of its habitat in the bloom of its life);
I believe that all food is energy, and that the energy surrounding the slaughter and use of the animal is more important than the cultural inhibitions on eating certain kinds of animals;
I believe that respectful, quick and painfree death at home for a cat or a horse or a cow, is preferable to commercial slaughterhouses.
 
Jay Green
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I've always been fascinated with these types of discussion and though I don't really view cats and dogs as a meat source for my family right now, I would have no problem whatsoever transitioning into the idea when my other meat sources have been depleted. The problem of excess cats and dogs in this country culminates in millions of dollars spent each year to "save" or spay and neuter these largely unwanted animals. What an incredible waste of money, time and resources that could be better spent on more serious problems of the human kind! And, rather than solving the problem, the problem only seems to be growing. Back in my youth, one never really saw stray cats or dogs much...they were usually shot on sight and the problem ended. Or tom cats would eat the litters of kittens, thus controlling the population growth of the feral cats, if any. Unwanted puppies were unceremoniously killed and disposed of..end of problem. Then people decided to be more "humane" and all viable, effective efforts to control the pet population went down the drain...and that drain is still swirling as we watch money float on by.

The only "taboo" rests in the minds of the same people who are contributing towards and generating these increases in pet populations. The same impractical thinking about pets and their place in this world is the same impractical thinking that would be the ones that, upon discovering one was eating these pets, would do all they could to put you in jail...thus creating another drain and strain on society as we also then imprison and care for another human in the prison system.

On the subject of "free to good home" pet owners who would be duped if one collected these animals for food purposes: Good home is a relative term and can mean different things to different people. I, for one, view anyone that imprisons an animal inside a house for its whole life as the most cruel of pet owners. Yes, I know I'm now in the minority but it doesn't mean I am wrong...these animals have been removed from their natural habitat and forced to live as humans and without the freedom to live a natural life that is more suited to their diet, body and hair designs and their social structures. Albeit it may be a gentle, "loving", well-fed and "safe" environment, but it is still just a nice little prison...and for whose benefit? Certainly not the pet's. Cesar Milan wouldn't be so rich right now if America wasn't treating all their dogs like humans and, no matter how much they simply want it to be so, they just aren't ever going to be humans.

So, years of confinement to a big ol' box full of human's ideas on what a dog's life should be, suffer a slow death filled with vet visits, medicines and people keeping you alive past your normal life span so that THEY won't have to be sad at your departure...or humane treatment, a natural existence outdoors and a quick and humane death, to be repurposed as energy for another being?

To me, the answer is logical and clear as day....a good home is one where the animal actually lives a normal, natural life until it experiences a quick death. What is done with the body afterwards is largely inconsequential to the animal's welfare, but eating it is also a very logical, practical conclusion.
 
Dale Hodgins
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My brother has been raising dogs on llama, goat, chicken and any other critters that people give away. Honesty is seldom his policy, so I'm guessing that assumptions are being made. I remember 20 years ago llamas were all the rage. Recently a woman was nearly stomped to death by her llama and several more free ones appeared in the adds.

Long pork is a delicacy in some parts. You might want to open a funeral parlour to guarantee a steady supply. Or, how about medical waste. Yum.

The Jewish and Muslim rules surrounding the consumption of meat, forbids them from eating carnivores. These animals are exposed to the parasites of their prey and toxins accumulate in their bodies. Pigs are forbidden. The wild pigs in that part of the world are known to eat manure from many other species including humans and to scavenge carrion. I don't go in for the spiritual stuff in any religion, but I'll bet those food laws prevented diseases from moving from the animals to humans.
 
alex Keenan
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actually wiki has some fairly accurate info on cat and dog meat.


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cat_meat

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dog_meat

I have known people who came from cultures that comsumed these meats.
I remember a freind telling me of a time he was snowed in. He was with a group and they were running out of food. So they got some traps set and got themselve a bobcat.
It was about the same time as the car the bobcat was popular. He lost it every time the commercial "Love that bob cat" played on the radio.

I remember an old trapper telling me of a time he got trapped in a mountain pass. The dog food ran out so he had to shot one of his dogs and feed to the others. He was eating the last of the dried fish and cooked some dog to make the fish last. Not one of his better weeks.

In another story when certain ethnic group came to America after the fall of vietnam the started adopting large dogs. Well after they adopted a fairly large number over a period of months the shelter checked into where all the dogs were going. Well in their culture dog meat is food. So having an opportunity to get large quantities of cheap meat was great. However, when the city learned about this they changed their laws and that was the end of cheap dog meat.
 
Chris Kott
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Hey all. I just gotta say, I'm a dog person. I have also had cats, both of which I did love, and not just for their particular appreciation of mice. Outside of a survival situation (not camping on the cheap, living off the land for a summer, I mean famine and the collapse of society), I wouldn't choose to eat dog or cat any more than I would eat dolphin, great ape, or elephant. Maybe not even whale. But that has more to do with the implied or observable semi-sentience there present. My concern with dog meat specifically is the same as that with pigs, only more so. Dogs have been in close proximity with humans for long enough that they can carry many diseases and parasites that humans can contract. I do eat pork, but not until it's properly cooked. I suppose I could use the same measure for dog, but I don't know if I could consign Fido to the maggot farm for the chickens any more than I would enjoy a good Lab chop.

Sorry, I read "Where the Red Fern Grows" at an early and impressionable age. I don't see a pig sacrificing itself to save its owner from a mountain lion in any situation unless the pig is crazy and hungry and sees the cat as food. I think that turning humanity into detrivores is a step in the wrong direction. I can collect roadkill to feed the maggot farm, and there are safer and hardier sources of meat. I don't think I would be able to raise canines for meat without feeling like I was eating people. Dale was making a crude joke (I think), but how many steps from eating loyal Lassie will it be to "disposing of human remains in an ecologically frugal manner?" (Remember to cook the dearly departed well, we wouldn't want to catch anything).

Has anyone thought of using live-capture mice and rat traps around the farm? If you didn't just toss them to the chucks, you could whip up a decent Rat-tatouille, or maybe a mousemeat pie?

-CK
 
Victor Johanson
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I've got a copy of http://www.amazon.com/Unmentionable-Cuisine-Calvin-W-Schwabe/dp/0813911621 . Canines and felines are some of the more pedestrian courses; just about anything you can think of has a recipe. The author was a distinguished veterinarian, and discusses the cultural aspects of various taboos in the introduction. It's a great book (especially if you need inspiration in preparing a bat or lizard for consumption).
 
Renate Howard
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Along that thread, check out "Man Eating Bugs" by Peter Menzel and Faith D'Aluisio
 
I agree. Here's the link: http://richsoil.com/cards
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