From the pages of Cop Porn (1573 N. Milwaukee #481, Chicago, IL 60611; $5)

On Eating One’s Dog: A Researched Rumination

By Dan Kelly

The Chinese have demonstrated remarkable creativity in the preparation of dog meat dishes, going so far as to develop a breed of dog for the sole purpose of consumption: the Chow Chow. Until legislation was passed in 1915 by the Chinese government, Chow Chow was a dish fit for the emperor.

But America has had its share of dog-eating cultures too. The Mexican Hairless dog (or Chihuahua) served as a primary food source of the Aztecs. During the Spanish conquest, in fact, it was recorded that over 400 of the shivering, rat-like creatures were sold per week in a single market near Mexico City. Native American tribes continue to consume dogs in various ceremonial feasts, though the practice continues in secret because of draconian anti-cruelty laws in the U.S.

The Hawaiians are second only to the Chinese in “dog food” preparation. Recipes for boiled dog, roast dog, and broiled puppy (always served with the prerequisite sweet potatoes!) are prepared to this day for visitors to the islands. Explorers that dared to try the dish recorded it as being delicious, with a taste vaguely reminiscent of mutton.

It has been suggested ad nauseam that American pets eat better than most people. Indeed, better than some Americans residing in the country’s alleys and nursing homes, who see no shame in devouring those tasty chunks of Alpo and Kal Kan that put the spring in Sparky’s step and the shine on Rusty’s coat.

And so this writer says, “Enough!”

The time has come to put these furry freeloaders to work when it comes time for their retirement (and, in most cases, before then). The U.S. alone puts over 13 million stray cats and dogs to sleep every year. As suggested by [Calvin] Schwabe, those 13 million animals represent a potential 120 million pounds of meat literally wasted every year; meat with as much nutritional value as any other type. Stray dogs are virtually unknown in mainland China, incidentally, and most have been eliminated as pests and food-wasters via the population’s alimentary canals. Comparatively (and admittedly ridiculously) would we allow prime beef steer to walk our streets at will? I think not!

Send zines to the Zine-o-File, Chicago Reader, 11 E. Illinois, Chicago 60611.

Art accompanying story in printed newspaper (not available in this archive): zine cover.