A dog exercises on an underwater treadmill at a veterinary clinic in Lodz, central Poland. Not for eating. (EPA-EFE/GRZEGORZ MICHALOWSKI )


Polish dog-meat lovers won’t have a candidate to champion them


A Polish election candidate for the Right’s Confederation party said that the European Union ban on the slaughter of dogs for meat and trade in dogmeat was wrong because “meat is just meat”.

As a result of her bold declaration, Natalia Jabłońska was removed from the Confederation’s election slate.

One of the party’s MPs, Dobromir Sośnierz, said he did not think Jabłońska was barking mad. He told Polish tabloid SuperExpress that he could not see any “moral difference between a dog and a cow”, arguing that the regulations preventing the slaughter and sale of dogmeat were unnecessary.

Both Jabłońska and Sośnierz were referring to an EU ban on slaughter of dogs for meat that dates back to 1986.

One of the leaders of the party and former presidential candidate Krzysztof Bosak disagreed strongly. He said Jabłońska was at odds with “the sensitivities of a majority of the voters. We are one of the most dog-loving nations and this is a good thing,” he told Radio Zet.

The head of the Confederation’s election campaign Witold Tymanowicz confirmed that Jabłońska would not now be a candidate for the Confederation. “The removal of the ban on the slaughter of dogs for meat is not and never has been a Confederation policy,” he said.

The parties running in the election had until the end of August 28 to register their election committees. They do not have to register their election slates for the 41 multi-member constituencies in which the 460 members of the Lower House are to be elected or for the 100 single member Senate seats until September 6.

The parties are, therefore, still able to add or delete candidates from their slates. In fact, the ruling PiS has yet to announce its candidates as the party leader Jarosław Kaczyński wants to ensure that any disappointed MPs do not retaliate by rebelling at the August 30 sitting of parliament, the last ahead of the deadline for registering candidates.

One of the candidates of the main liberal opposition PO Joanna Kantak was removed from that party’s slate for supporting the dismantling of the wall on the border with Belarus and over the right to abortion. She managed to persuade the Left party to take her onto its slate.

Jabłońska is unlikely to have such luck – as many point out, dog owners have long memories.