China's Dog Crackdown Is Boneheaded

Regulators will determine which breeds can be house pets
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 3, 2014 12:37 PM CDT
China's Dog Crackdown Is Boneheaded
A rescued dog looks out from a cage at a base of China Small Animal Protection Association on the outskirts of Beijing.   (AP Photo)

Dogs in China better watch their backs. A creepy-sounding government panel called the National Companion Animal Standardization Committee has been formed to start assessing which types of dogs will make the cut as house pets, writes Adam Minter at Bloomberg View. These "dog-hating Chinese bureaucrats" will rank breeds in categories that range from disposition to disease-resistance, and those found lacking will be outlawed as pets. Owners of mutts that don't have much more going for them than cuteness or a fondness for fetching should be worried.

The move is a followup to a misguided attempt by Beijing officials last June to ban dogs deemed too big (taller than 14 inches) or too violent from the city. Owners largely ignored the measure, and authorities didn't press the issue. It's back now, however, and as misguided as ever, writes Minter. "Government-mediated pet ownership is unlikely to endear China’s regulators to the country's millions of dog owners," he writes. "In fact, it’ll likely just serve to make them seem as they are: out-of-touch meddlers reluctant to let Chinese people enjoy the perks of their hard-earned middle-class lifestyles." Click for Minter's full column. (More China stories.)

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