Ending the horrendous dog meat trade

25 June 2019

The consumption of dog meat. It’s a practice that’s unthinkable for most people, including the majority of China’s population – the country where it is most widespread.

Founded only a decade ago, The Lychee and Dog Meat Festival is held annually from 21 – 30 June, in the city of Yulin, China.

The dogs are mostly wandering strays rounded up or household pets stolen by criminal gangs. They’re crammed into small cages without food and water and transported for long periods of time.

Once at the festival, they experience horrific pain and suffering, spending their last days in cramped cages, watching fellow dogs being beaten, skinned or boiled alive, waiting in fear to be next. 

Whether legal or illegal – this kind of inhumane practice must stop. 

The production of dog and cat meat for human consumption not only involves inherent cruelty, there’s also the issue of poor sanitation and lack of quarantine regulations surrounding this trade – which presents a potential threat to public health, risks of rabies, and food safety concerns.

Image credit: World Animal Protection/Nada Plesonjik

There is growing outrage in China, and the rest of the world, against eating dog meat. Dogs are primarily pets and should be treated with care and respect. And, although, Yulin is the most notorious example of the practice, it represents only the tip of the iceberg.

A relatively small proportion of, usually older, Chinese have defiantly clung onto this so-called “cultural tradition” in the face of Western and local opposition. However, there is hope that, with the younger Chinese being overwhelmingly against the practice, that it will die out within a generation.

We hope this cruel practice becomes a thing of the past in China and other countries across the world.

Our advice is for tourists visiting Asia is to steer clear of markets selling dog meat; and we urge the governments of the countries involved to phase-out the barbaric dog meat industry once and for all.

Click here to learn more about our ongoing rabies work and why Life’s better with dogs.

Across Asia, 30 million dogs a year are killed for their meat – about half of those in China alone.
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