Animal rights campaigners in Switzerland would appreciate it if the three percent of the country's population that eats domestic cats and dogs would kindly stop eating them, the BBC reports.

Although the sale of cat and dog meat is banned in Switzerland, it's still legal to eat your own domestic animals, something Swiss animal protection group SOS Chats Noirague claims a small segment of the population is secretly doing. (They're looking at you, Lucerne, Appenzell, Jura, and Bern.)

Cat is a traditional Christmas dish in some areas, "often cooked for the festive season in a similar way to rabbit—with white wine and garlic," the BBC reports.

Dog meat is mainly used for sausages and to cure rheumatism.

SOS Chats has started a petition to parliament to outlaw the consumption of les poor little chats et chiens, which has now collected more than 16,000 signatures. The organization led a successful charge to ban the sale of cat skins last year, but hunting stray cats remains legal because ministers felt a spay and neuter campaign would be too costly.

SOS Chats claims Federal Councillor Doris Leuthard—who in 2008 helped to implement a law that requires all dog owners to take courses in the care of their animals—has said the "tradition" of eating dogs and cats shouldn't be banned through legislation.

"A political leader told us parliament won't do anything unless people revolt," SOS Chats' Tomi Tomek told the BBC.

[h/t BBC]