Meat Market Macabre: The Gruesome Tomohon Market of Indonesia

Posted by - July 18, 2012 | Category: Peculiarities

Tomohon Traditional Market, North Sulawesi, Indonesia


Travel ain’t always pretty. In fact, it can get downright grisly. And nowhere is that more apparent than at the Tomohon Traditional Market in the hills of North Sulawesi, Indonesia – home to an entirely different sort of meat market.

Well, they have fruit and veggies too, but trust me, that’s not the memory you walk away with. Because for every corner with a scene like this

Tomohon Traditional Market, Tomohon, North Sulawesi, Indonesia 8

There’s another one with a scene like this…

More dog meat at Tomohon Traditional Market, Tomohon, Sulawesi, Indonesia

If you’re getting a little squeamish already, I’ll give you a nice little exit in the form of this post with pretty photos of origami. Click away…

Are they gone?

Alright then, on with the gore…

I was in North Sulawesi for the ASEAN Tourism Forum Travel Conference and it was there that I met up with Mario-Ben Gavriel from Flower’s Lane Vacations (Tomohon, ironically, is also known as the City of Flowers) for a rat-hunting tour. And while I did end up schlepping through the jungle for the honour of hunting, preparing, and eating a rat, it was a walk in the park compared with the sights and smells of the Tomohon Traditional Market.

I had heard of the market before, and I’d even seen photos of it, but honestly, photos cannot do a place like this any justice. I think it is the first time I smelled death and that last desperate gasp of air when warm blood turns to cold.

The Tomohon Market starts out innocuous enough – lots of pretty red and green chilli’s…

Chilies at Tomohon Traditional Market, Tomohon, North Sulawesi, Indonesia 3

And then onto your assorted fruit and veg section…

Tomohon Traditional Market, Tomohon, North Sulawesi, Indonesia 2Tomohon Traditional Market, Tomohon, North Sulawesi, Indonesia 3Tomohon Traditional Market, Tomohon, North Sulawesi, Indonesia 4Tomohon Traditional Market, Tomohon, North Sulawesi, Indonesia 6Tomohon Traditional Market, Tomohon, North Sulawesi, Indonesia 7Tomohon Traditional Market, Tomohon, North Sulawesi, Indonesia 9Tomohon Traditional Market, Tomohon, North Sulawesi, Indonesia 10

They even make and package tofu here…

Making and packing tofu -- Tomohon Traditional Market, Tomohon, North Sulawesi, Indonesia 12Tomohon Traditional Market, Tomohon, North Sulawesi, Indonesia 14

It’s not until you get to the tail-end (no pun intended) of the vegetable section that you notice that this is not your typical market.

Chilis, dog's leg, and rats Tomohon Traditional Market, Tomohon, North Sulawesi, Indonesia

They do however sell the freshest chicken possible…

man on motorbike with live chickens -- Tomohon Traditional Market, Tomohon, North Sulawesi, Indonesia 11

That’s when the smell hits you.

Bats. And plenty of them.

dead bats for sale - Tomohon Traditional Market, Tomohon, North Sulawesi, Indonesia

Bats at Tomohon Traditional Market, Tomohon, Sulawesi, Indonesia

But be aware that wings are sold separately…

Bats for sale at Tomohon Traditional Market in North Sulawesi, Indonesia

Tomohon Market  and Rat Hunting 084

Preparing roasted rats for sale at Tomohon Traditional Market, Tomohon, Sulawesi, Indonesia

Rats are even more common here than at your average food market.

Dead Rats for sale at Tomohon Traditional Market, Tomohon, Sulawesi, Indonesia

Tomohon Market, Roasted Rat for sale in Indonesia

There’s even an odd snake thrown in here and there…

Snake at Tomohon Traditional Market, Tomohon, Sulawesi, Indonesia

This is probably one of my favourite photos from the market. Can you spot how many dead (and living) animals there are in this scene?

(Click on photo to enlarge)

Man with blow torch roasting a snake -- A typical scene at Tomohon Traditional Market, Tomohon, Sulawesi, Indonesia

Animals for sale at at Tomohon Traditional Market, Tomohon, Sulawesi, Indonesia

Body of babirusa (wild pig) Tomohon Traditional Market, Tomohon, North Sulawesi, Indonesia

Pig's heads -- Tomohon Traditional Market, Tomohon, North Sulawesi, Indonesia 13

I’m not entirely sure how this chap can keep his breakfast, much less eat it in these surroundings.

Severed Pig's head at Tomohon Traditional Market, Tomohon, Sulawesi, Indonesia

Pig's head at Tomohon Traditional Market, Tomohon, Sulawesi, Indonesia

This is the head of a Babirusa (wild pig) with tusks partially removed.

Babirusa (wild boar) at Tomohon Traditional Market, Tomohon, Sulawesi, Indonesia

This is a dead sloth — completely illegal according to my guide Ben – but something that does turn up from time-to-time in the market.

Dead Sloth at Tomohon Traditional Market, Tomohon, Sulawesi, Indonesia

There are plenty of various monkey bits scattered throughout the market as well.

Monkey entrails at Tomohon Traditional Market, Tomohon, Sulawesi, Indonesia

The saddest thing for me though was seeing the dogs, not just the dead ones…

Dogs and snakes sold as food at Tomohon Traditional Market, Tomohon, Sulawesi, Indonesia

Dog meat at Tomohon Traditional Market, Tomohon, Sulawesi, Indonesia

But the living ones too.

Dog in cage at Tomohon Traditional Market, Tomohon, North Sulawesi, Indonesia

Dog's awaiting their fate as food at Tomohon Traditional Market, Tomohon, Sulawesi, Indonesia

Dogs crammed in a cage awaiting slaughter Tomohon Traditional Market, Tomohon, North Sulawesi, Indonesia

Is this not the saddest face ever?

Dogs crammed in cage Tomohon Traditional Market, Tomohon, North Sulawesi, Indonesia

For me, it was easier to stomach the entrails of monkeys, rats on a stick, and decapitated pigs then it was to see these live dogs awaiting their fate. Maybe it’s because the bats, sloths, and snakes and all those things just seemed so foreign.

I have friends who have dogs though.

And maybe it was because I knew exactly what the fate of all these poor little guys would be.

I like to travel with the mindset of “It’s not wrong, it’s just different.” I had a hard time sticking to that here though.

What are your thoughts? Would you visit the Tomohon Traditional Market or one like it?

If this market is not for you, check out other Things to Do in Manado.

Tomohon Traditional Market, Tomohon, North Sulawesi, Indonesia. Best visited early morning Saturday when the market is in full swing. For guided tours of Tomohon Traditional Market (including the rat-hunting tour) you can book directly through Mario-Ben Gavriel at Flowers Lane Vacations or through

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125 comments - add one
  1. I read the text, let me eyes skip over most of the photos. I could NEVER visit this place. I am pretty sure it would leave me in tears. Like you, I struggle with my own beliefs versus others when traveling. It is very hard to let go of what you consider right and wrong and open yourself up to what is the norm in another country/culture. Just the other day, when I was at the park, someone brought in two puppies. Their mom was killed by a car. If the park did not take them, they were going to sell them to a local village to eat.

  2. You had to zoom in on that puppies face.. I can never visit this place, I’d be an emotional wreck. Different alright.. in my mind, wrong too. :T

  3. I try hard not to judge, but I’ll admit I’m judging this one. I’m also an adamant animal lover. I rescue them from the local shelter and I foster those who need to find homes. I’ve also adopted a street dog and shipped him from Nairobi back to the United States. I can’t imagine what his fate would have been had I left him behind. I know that animals are not “pets” in other parts of the world, but I would expect them to be treated humanely, which they are not.

  4. Well, there goes my day. Sometimes I can’t sleep at night just thinking about the horrible things happening to dogs all over. And you just gave me fodder for weeks. I feel ill.

    1. And you can sleep while millions of children and people are dying every day all over the world? Since when the value of dogs became higher than the value of human race? Sweet dreams Amy!

  5. Even though I knew I was going to hate this post, I still scrolled through the photos. I’m such a masochist.

    Those last ones of the dogs are so sad… all I can think of is my own poor pup, who has such a loving and playful personality, being stuck in that crate awaiting the fate of being slaughtered and eaten. Ugh.

  6. The photos wrecked my heart.
    I knew it from the beginning there must be dogs there. (T__T)
    I live in different part of Indonesia, and yes there are people who eat dogs here.
    I can never do that, for i love dogs so much (currently taking care of 5 dogs), which is always sadden me because everytime i tried to make them see how beautiful dogs are, they don’t care.

  7. I didn’t appreciate seeing these photos until I remembered that while we all look for beauty and avoid ugliness, each to his own, and this is the world.

    Good photos.

    1. @David Bennett: Agreed with your comment “we all look for beauty and avoid ugliness, each to his own, and this is the world” …

      Tomohon market is a small area in City of Tomohon, smallest spot in Province of North Celebes/Sulawesi, tiny weeny of Indonesia. It is one of diversity in Indonesia and the world we live now …

      Fyi Indonesia have 320 millions populations, 32 provinces, 17.500 islands, more then 10.000 tribes with it’s own cultures/languages, many religions (Islam, Cristian; advent, protestant, catholic, anglican, orthodoks etc, Hindu, Budha, Tionghoa), and with that much diversity, Indonesia only have 1 national language that unite all the differences which is Bahasa Indonesia where respect can be delivered clearly to each others …

  8. Even though I don’t eat meat, I have nothing against who do, but there’s a limit to anything, I don’t think torturing animals is a good sign of civilization, and sadly this happens everywhere, not just in Indonesia, in many different forms. I think it’s just one of the different facets of the deep disrespect humans have towards the planet.

  9. I’ve seen children barbecuing a dog in northern Thailand and watched the entrails float down the river. And dogs hung up in the window of butcher shops in Vietnam. I tried to tell myself I was being hypocritical thinking eating dog is somehow worse than eating other animals. It is hard though.

  10. Good lord they char the crap out of those animals.

    For some reason the dogs didn’t really bother me but the live dogs just look so sad. Everything looks like the guinea pigs I saw roasting in Ecuador.

  11. I guess folks who find cows to be sacred would find visiting your average supermarket in Europe or America fairly horrific too 😉 It’s interesting how one part of the world regards a type of animal as a pet, and in another part of the world it’s a viable food source. Fascinating stuff, if a tad on the gory side. Although as I said.. your average supermarket meat section is not really any worse… just more cunningly disguised!

  12. I just lost my appetite. I don’t know what’s worse the slaughtered animals or the Blackened ones..

    Even though I come from a Hindu family where cow is Sacred I eat (Read: Enjoy) Beef.
    I don’t think I can even eat Bats/ rats/snakes.. Too adventurous for my tastes 🙂

    I liked the attention to the detail in the photos..


  13. Interesting photos. Thank you for sharing. As another commentor mentioned, our stores would be just as grotesque to another culture.
    Traveling to China, Morocco and Egypt gave me some interesting views of things. Eating horse sashimi in Japan was an experience.
    People in the states and perhaps some parts of Europe would find eating dog or horse horrific. Both dogs and horses are practically a religion in the US, based on the money consumed and time spent caring for them. I’m not anti-dog or horse at all but I also look at the reality the situation.
    Yet, in other countries, this is perfectly acceptable and good. We are so used to having our meat wrapped in pretty packages that we’re not used to the real image of getting food.

  14. Thanks for posting, even though some of the scenes were tough to handle. It’s good to learn that places like this exist to get an understanding of the way different cultures live. Now that I’ve seen it, I probably wouldn’t want to go there in person.

  15. Raymond, I can only say that you’re pictures are both sensational, shocking and gory. I really don’t know if I could hang around there and take photos, like you say, it’s the live animals awaiting their fate that you feel sorry for.

  16. I love Indonesia but these markets are terrible.. Why eat rat, bats let alone dogs? Yes we eat meat and buy in our supermarkets but this is different .. I burst into tears in a fish market seeing rays and sharks, I don’t know what I’d do seeing this.. But thanks for sharing.

  17. We went to a similar market in China and it really upset us to be there. It’s the fact that the animals see exactly what will happen to them as they await their fate. I had tears in my eyes and couldn’t take it. I couldn’t take the dogs, the chickens, the snakes, the turtles. Everything broke my heart. It’s the fact that they blow torch the dogs right in front of the other dogs sitting in the cage. That they cut off the parts right in front of the animals that are still alive in the cage, They are squished together in tiny cages and minimal water. Even the scorpions were tortured as they squirmed on skewers to be deep fried alive. It is a depressing scene.
    Humans are just the worst living creature on the planet. We seem to want to make everything suffer.
    We took photos of the dogs and turtles etc in China and couldn’t even bring ourselves to write a post about it. It’s just not something we’re comfortable with sharing. I know that pigs and chickens are treated poorly in North America as well. It’s a human thing, we’re a terrible species.

    1. I sat on the fence with these photos for a while as well. I like to keep things pretty upbeat and quirky around here, but the world can sometimes be an unsettling place, and I think that needs to be shown as well.

      Thanks for the comment Deb!

  18. NOOOOO! Not a dead sloth 🙁 Also, bats?! They don’t even look real – and they look pretty massive, too…shudder.

    As for the dogs thing, some people here in Korea still eat dog and I just can’t get my head around it still. I grew up surrounded by dogs and don’t know how anybody could eat one.

  19. Dead sloth?!?! Nooooooooo! Also holy crap those bats are big! Shudder…

    As for the dogs…I live in Korea where people still eat dog meat, although thankfully it’s not common. I know it’s part of the culture, but I just can’t get my head around it as I grew up surrounded by dogs. It’s something I’d never, ever eat.

  20. Oh…really horrible to see! But it is needed to show the reality, to not hide away from it. So good on you, even if it hurts when looking. We must bet angry, upset, sad, horrified, all these feeling we needs so that we act!! Because we must many join together and makes the life better for all animals, and of course for all humans, but it all go hand in hand. Here is my project to raise awareness and help dogs in Bali if anyone is interested:

    1. Who’s helping the cows, chickens, pigs, fish, birds and other meat consumed animals here in America? Just because you choose to keep a dog as a pet and not a pig, doesn’t mean that eating dog is wrong, but eating pigs or any other animal is ok!

      1. no body is proud of killing pigs and chicken.
        but the human has no other choise and need to eat meat. so we can limit it to just few kind of animals and do it in a very proper way. trying not to let them suffer or feel pain.
        that is how it is done in a meat factory.
        but this picture show something totally diffrent.
        ps: im not asian but im living for few years in china

        1. Humans are not obligate carnivores, but I’m not going into that.

          It’s not “totally different” at all. Our slaughterhouses are no more painless and proper than this place. You can eat meat if you want to, but regardless of where it happens and what species is used it’s still eating dead things. It is what it is. Don’t put your culture on moral pedestal just because you buy your meat in clean little plastic-wrapped packages that spare you the process behind it. Before it was on the supermarket shelf it suffered and it looked just like this.

          I’m not telling you not to eat meat, but I am telling you that you’re fooling yourself if you think “meat factories” are putting your hamburgers off to a clean and merciful sleep.

  21. I think I would be the one bartering to get the live dogs freed. But what would I do with them all? I surely can’t take them all home, I would have to contact some dog rescue people I know of…
    I thank you and admire your bravery for going to this market, I think to TRAVEL and truly travel – one must need to see all that is different, even if it hurts our hearts 🙂

    I am liking your travel blog a little too much… I have training to modify and update!

  22. I wonder how many of the people whho are appalled by these scenes eat meat. I’m not sure why eating a cute little dog is worse than eating a cute little lamb. The good thing about this market is that it doesn’t sanitise the truth of eating animals as we do in the west. Most peopple would be horrified by this but eat battery farmed chickens and non free range meat. What’s worse – that or the Tomohon market?

  23. I do eat meat, and accept that an animal has to die however i buy my meat from a local butcher where I know that the animal has been dispatched humanely and has lived locally so hasn’t spent hours being transported to a huge abattoir where things can go wrong- the issue with a lot of eastern cultures is that cruelty seems to be acceptable in the killing process and even thought to enhance the flavour or give it additional health benefits- this needs to be stopped along with the fur, ivory and other animal bi-products.

    1. Neil, no animal is ‘dispatched’ humanely. The fear is still in those animals as they await their fate as it is in the dogs waiting their fate in these markets. It’s a known fact that the stunning process is painful, it has been tested, and it is quite normal for animals to wake up during the skinning process. buying meat from a local butcher or not, animals do not need to die for us.

      1. Lisa, I agree with you (but I think Neil is a humane, caring person – just needs to change his thinking some). The horror that goes on everyday is unacceptable. There must be something we can do about it. I just started to watch (couldn’t stand to finish) a youtube video showing a crying dog being pulled out of a cage in the Tomohon market and being beaten with a club. I feel guilty going through life without doing something about it. Organizations like the Humane Society aren’t. They pay their staff huge salaries and huge pensions ( I can’t stand it any longer. What goes on every day is heinous. We see only a tiny, minuscule fraction of it.

  24. I agree that it’s sad to see the live animals in cages but it would be hypocritical to say that it’s any worse than the way we raise most of our meat in the Americas. Chickens and cows cramped together with little water and full of disease. We’re just not used to having it shoved in our faces. We like buying our meat wrapped in plastic with little or no resemblance to something that was once alive.

    1. Dog meat consumed by particular ethnic in Indonesia (Tomohonese & batak). When you travel around some countries such as China, India, South Korea, Vietnam & Polynesia islands ; dog meat is common food ingredient. Another country treat snake meat & bat mat as medicine.

  25. Does it break your heart more to see starving children or dead dogs. Let go of your cultural egoism & realize that many of the things we do in American seem just as gross and absurd to other countries! Most Indians can’t stand to see us eating cows…yet we do EVERYDAY without a thought! Perhaps it’s because the whole animal is still in tact that causes you to be squeamish? Well, in the US, food marketers & manufacturers have figured this out, which is why most meat is even sold ‘boneless’ to help YOU feel better about consuming meat. Stop being so judgmental…everyone has to eat! If it bothers you that much, you should offer up suggestions to this poor area as to what foods would be better for them to consume!? This is their way of life & it should be respected, not treated with disgust and disdain because of your own (REMOTE) personal feelings for certain animals.

    1. You just totally miss the point. It’s not about egoism or which culture is more noble. I couldn’t care less about that. Yes… sure animals are mistreated horribly here in the U.S., too. I just want animal suffering to stop everywhere.

      That being said, I do, however, believe that those Indonesians are backwards, uneducated savages. Yeah, there are some of those here (in the U.S.), but almost all of them are such.

      1. Have you ever been there? Probaly not! And you are a citizen of a country that is not even able to provide it’s own people with an affordable health insurance. Or shall I mention the Kux Kux Clan which I personally experienced in Georgia. So please don’t call other people uneducated savages!

      2. Indonesians are backwards? uneducated savages? I’m an Indonesian, I am here in the US, I work for a US company, I was recruited and asked to help them build and strengthen the company. smart move eh? asking an uneducated savages manage your company! you moron!

        if you’ve failed to notice, most areas in the US, the price values of houses where asians lives grow in strength, why do you think that is? why are the schools in districts where there are many asians have a better ratings? is it because we are so backwards?

        man! where are you from? never mind, have you ever been outside of the US and see the world? or better yet bill, have you ever been out of your state?

        backward? uneducated savages? D’oh!

      3. If you ever go there, It’s really different about what you’re thinking. It’s not represent as you think. It just little part from thousands places wich have many culture there, not in case you said uneducated savages!! Try more wisely giving note.

    2. The problem is the unsustainable population growth of humans – this island just reflects the world where we\they will just relentlessly ravage the resources until they are all gone. America is probably more guilty of this than any other country on earth as people won’t stop consuming. So I’d rather the children weren’t born in the first place tbh.

  26. I have been several times to the area and have a lot of local friends. This kind of diet has a long tradition with the Minahasa people an there is nothing wrong with it. What from my oppinion should be improved is the attitude towards animals and how they are killed. Believe me the pigs don’t have a nicer death than the dogs. But pigs don’t have a lobby!

    We should be more concerned about the nature destruction in Indonesia and other Asian countries due to mining (minerals for our technology), palm oil (you probably used it today in the shower or in your food) and logging.

    So we should refrain from our western double moral and accept other coultures. Otherwise stop to use palm oil, which kills the orang utans on Borneo and Sumatra! But you will realize this is almost impossible in our western world and using your cosmetic you don’t hear the orang utans scream when they are killed to make room for more plantations!

    1. Great comments Rolf ..

      What you wrote the reality that Indonesia and generally rain forest country all over the world currently, and it is the big issue .. but no one care!

      like logging, “by the name of nature friendly” people now avoid using polymer/chemical products and change to the wood for house, furniture etc .. nothing wrong with it but actually the materials took from the rain forest in all over the world ..

      after the forest open, the forest & it’s diversity inside will never been the same again ..

      double morale standard applied perfectly, avoid the reality by close theirs mouth/ear/eyes and said, “that is those country problems why the people and government allow..not mine”

  27. People killing and eat animals have never really bothered me. It’s only what the animal had to go through before It died that makes up very upset.

    Seeing these photos kind of made me a bit squeamish, only cause it was gross. Dead dog? Aw, sad, but what ever. Tons of live dogs stuffed in one cage? Now I am very upset.

  28. This is my country, Indonesia … filled with diversity, religion, ethnicity, race and inter-group, and this is what happens, even to some people what they are doing is legitimate fine, all for the sake of life and the necessities of life, this is my country, Indonesia, backward, full of ignorance and poverty, which is where the government is only thinking about their own belly, corruption, corruption and corruption, without thinking of its people, even if thinking and acting for the people, it is just a mere ceremonial, this is my country, Indonesia …..

  29. OMG… really surprised and sad to see these animal especially the roasted dogs and those who were inside the cage. Anyway, I’m from Bali, Indonesia, but I don’t know this area and its habbit. I don’t even find any human eating rats in my region. Maybe I have to come there and hunting some photos.

  30. Wew!
    Actually, that’s in my country. Glad that market only in Manado, North Sumatra (cmiiw).
    Anyway, please not because this market you don’t want to visit Indonesia. We have more beautiful and exotic places.

  31. indonesia adalah negara yang kaya budaya,agama dan ras,..dalam damai satu kesatuan negara,…soal makanan..banyak sekali makanan yang sangat mengerikan bila belum pernah melihat.tidak semuanya orang indonesia yang memakan dalam mengerikan.. the best indonesia..I love Indonesian…

  32. saya dari jawa indonesia. tidak semua pasar tradisional seperti tomohon, saya muslim dilarang untuk memakan babi, anjing, kera, ular, kucing, tikus dan yang mengandung alkohol.

  33. I am from Java Indonesia. not all traditional markets like Tomohon, my Muslim is forbidden to eat pigs, dogs, monkeys, snakes, cats, rats and containing alcohol.

  34. Im Indonesian people, I have read the entire comments about your post. Actually, Indonesia have so many culture and your post about Tomohon was only one of million cutlure that we have. Not all Indonesian people did that things to animal like that. You could visit Java, Borneo and Sumatera because, they did’t do the same like Sulawesi. That’s why I told you “Indonesian people have so many culture” They don’t same one by one. So do not ever think bad of every ppl.

  35. actually this market only located in Tomohon , if you go to other place in Indoenesia you will not see like in Tomohon its depends on culture , like me I live in west Sumatera and there is nothing like Tomohon . And actually some Indonesian people are disgusting when they see this in the market

  36. Geez, it turns out in Sulawesi (Indonesia) resale of the animal. And that makes the animal terrible is baked. And thank God I live in West Kalimantan (Indonesia), and have never seen such an animal

  37. Every day there are so many cows, pigs, and other animals slaughtered in various markets around the world. But we feel different emotions when it involves dogs or cats, because for most people these animals have become friends. It feels like they kill your friend, and there is nothing you can do about it.

    I have 3 dogs, and I consider them as friends. So it is disturbing my mind when I saw the face of the dog that is in the cage. This one looks very sad. And I am pretty sure that this dog already dead.

    And still,… hundreds of them will die in this way in the traditional markets in North Sulawesi…every day.

  38. i know that our Tomohon was wrong. but its just a culture, based on all the comments were judging our culture. everybody has different personalities, cultures, and mindsets. so, please respect it. 🙂

    1. @Firajoti: like your comment .. 🙂

      *for the indonesian that wrote comments that judging, please pack your bag, open your mind, leave your ego of your culture/tribes, and set yourself for travel & dive in to other indonesian area with different culture .. to remind yourself about the Bhineka Tunggal Ika that we have and hold always .. Gb all

  39. Ah! Sh*t! I’ll have a very bad dream tonight! It’s better for me if I never seen anything like this (-_-‘) …. poor dogs. whoaaa!

  40. It’s kinda terrific when I scrolled down through the page. But then as I scrolled down, I remembered how Indonesia has a lot of different cultures. Some parts of Indonesia don’t do what the others do. But it’s okay because the culture has lived with them for such a long time.
    Indonesians people are not always backward. The cultures are what I’m proud of. It only proves that we still have some traditions or things that we could pass to our next generation and proudly tell them that their country is so rich with varieties.
    Beside, in every cultures, there’s always been a reason why they did that.
    But of course, for a lot of people some of our cultures are too primitive.
    Well… Varieties are good in my opinion *shrug* and it doesn’t happen in every regions here in Indonesia so I don’t really see it as a problem though.

  41. I’m reading Kafka on The Shore by Murakami and as part of the story, there’s a man called Mr. Johny Walker, who’s hunting and killing cats. He needs the soul of those cats for him to make the flute –a flute that can’t be heard with normal ears, and he must face a man named Nakata, a man with limited abilities but –strangely– he can talks with cats.

    So, what I want to say is, let’s read something more useful, written with beautiful words and has deep meanings in life rather than yelling each other’s words after checking some pictures on this site. I believe we need to study the culture to comment, to be open-minded.

    Murakami in the same book wrote ““Narrow minds devoid of imagination. Intolerance, theories cut off from reality, empty terminology, usurped ideals, inflexible systems. Those are the things that really frighten me. What I absolutely fear and loathe. Of course it’s important to know what’s right and what’s wrong. Individual errors in judgment can usually be corrected. As long as you have the courage to admit mistakes, things can be turned around. But intolerant, narrow minds with no imagination are like parasites that transform the host, change form, and continue to thrive. They’re a lost cause, and I don’t want anyone like that coming in here.”

  42. Sory guys, I represent Indonesia to apologize to all of them, indeed all animals perjual traded it in, but it was only in my part of course only one island, only one island in Indonesia. In fact there are many in the Indonesian market really is not like that”

    1. Hi guys, I am soryy,,, I represent Indonesia to apologize to all of them, indeed all animals are traded in per-sale, but it was only in my part of course only one island, only one island in Indonesia. In fact there are many in the Indonesian market really is not like that”

  43. This is so irritating, i should admit it. I’m from Indonesia, but in the other area. I visited Manado once, i thought it was beautiful, because i visited Bunaken and Tondano lake, and a beautiful cafe in Manado where we can look exactly the mountain. If you don’t post this stuff, i may never know about this. I knew they eat dogs, but not the other animals like that and the way they sell it that so scary. Nausea, that’s what i feel when i saw your posts. But well, i try to understand that is their culture and you should know they are very traditional i can’t explain. But trust me, you should go to the other parts of Indonesia, like Bali, Lombok, Medan (Toba Lake), East Java (Mt.Bromo)……. 🙂

  44. I am from Indonesia, we live in many cultures … and one of them is the market in Manado this …. but other markets did not sell cat meat, dog, etc … to its customers …

  45. Every province in indonesia different culture, so you can’t assumed every place indonesia same with tomohon, maybe the local people usually consumption like dog, pig, monkey, rat, snake etc. It’s not same if you visited to other places in indonesia like bali, lombok, jogjakarta,kalimantan, ambon, papua or jakarta. I suggest you please visited to other place in indonesia. you can say amazing indonesia, trust me.

    Indonesia lover

  46. i think this article is very subjective about local culture. first, This is the culture of the local people of North Sulawesi, they usually consume dog, rat, snake and other extra ordinary animals as daily food (Maybe a lion if it exists), not much different from other cultures in other countries. second, I think the problem is just how the animal slaughtering. as local people of North Sulawesi, i think our way of killing still more humane than other cultures. the last, all the meat slaughter animals or animal’s meat processing every where is not always fun, there are still many amazing place in North Sulawesi 🙂

  47. God, Plz save them, think about their PAIN, CRY, TEARS. all animal are like us(not only dogs), they have their own languages, tastes, habits etc. While they are not interfering in our lives then why we are doing same for just “TASTE” only.. Its so ridiculous and inhuman. Hate it, anywhere in the world with any animal.

  48. I am not sure if I would be shocked, disgusted or what. I knew Indonesia had flare for the exotic but this is just absurd!

  49. Man on the lam, what an odd find indeed. I’ve seen bandicoots go under the knife in rural West Bengal, but this is quite something else!

    I’m off to Indonesia in November, and find this market’s gruesomeness oddly intriguing. Maybe it’s my confused thoughts about non-vegetarianism made worse by my love for animals. And maybe this meat market will point me towards clarity. :-\

  50. Without considering those bats this market doesn’t look very different than the markets here in Ecuador, it specially reminds me the Pompeya market in the Amazon region where they sell monkeys, wild pigs and even armadillos and anacondas aswell of many other kinds of wildlife… some of them are protected species taken from national parks obviously are the oil companies who facilitate hunting and protected wildflife trading with the roads they build.

    Great article.

  51. It is unreal how evil and inhumane this market it…..They smash a dog over the head and then set them on fire. the dog feels his burning skin and can’t do anything about it. this market is ruthless.

  52. I live about 500 meters from that market. Most of the people here raise the dog just the way your raise cow and pig, as a livestock not pet. We eat almost every animals we can find. What the different about eating dog and eating other animals? There is no rule that said dog is a pet and pig is a live stock. What is worse? Death people or that dog? This is the way we live, it had been past from generation to generation. Please be respectfull….

  53. Wow, that’s really terrible! Sure it’s so sad to see those pity dogs. But that’s what happened in Indonesia, not just in Tomohon, but also in some other parts of the country, such as Maluku, Medan and even the Muslim majority Java Island, particularly in the Central Java Province, which according to local news, there are around 223 dogs consumed a day there and with Solo City being the largest.

    1. Yeah it’s so sad to see dogs (or any animal) treated that way. An anti-Islamic website stole these photos and are trying to pass them off as proof that Muslims are barbaric. I just want to be on the record as saying that it is Christians who are killing these days, and it is Christians who are eating these dogs. Dogs are unclean to Muslims, and definitely not halal. Sorry for the rant but your comment reminded me. 🙂

      And thanks for your comment by the way! 🙂


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