June 29th, 2010 by Robin Dorman
Imagine an elderly golden retriever behind the bars of a small cage; his warm brown eyes begging for your help. In the United States this dog would most likely be in a shelter waiting for his forever home, but the dog I speak of was condemned to a tortuous death in the South Korean meat market. Dogs just like those you and I cherish as members of our family are killed for their meat every day in South Korea. In Defense of Animals cannot turn away from the great need of these helpless beings.
IDA’s South Korean partners, Coexistence for Animal Rights on Earth, (CARE) recently received information about a remote dog meat “farm” in Gyeonggi Province. When CARE activists visited the facility, they discovered an appalling scene. Dogs were living in miserable conditions in feces-laden, cramped, ramshackle cages. These neglected dogs were filthy- some suffering from severe injuries.
The conditions were so horrible; these brave activists simply couldn’t leave without the dogs. At the risk of arrest and personal injury, they rescued the dogs, bringing them to CARE’s animal shelter to be treated, cleaned and, most likely, loved for the first time. You can see the images of the dramatic rescue here .
Some in South Korea believe that the more the dog suffers during death, the more virility a man will obtain from eating his or her flesh. Dogs are tortured to death in shocking and unimaginable ways because of this horrible, antiquated superstition. Not only do these dogs endure loneliness and squalor during their short lives, their deaths are inconceivably cruel.
Most South Koreans consider dogs to be companion animals. Only a small minority eat them. We want to support those South Koreans who advocate that animals deserve compassion, love and respect; that they are sentient beings and not mere commodities to be bought, sold and slaughtered.
Please help IDA draw international attention to this issue by participating in our International Day of Action for South Korean Dogs on Tuesday, July 6, 2010. Dozens of cities around the world will host outreach events to educate their communities about this important issue. Activists will pass out leaflets and hold signs outside South Korean Embassies and Consulates around the globe, drawing world attention to the dogs of South Korea. Find out if your city is hosting an event here.
This year’s Day of Action includes cities in the U.S., Canada, Ireland, Bolivia, South Africa, India and of course, South Korea. Let’s support the courageous South Korean activists who battle to free these dogs by raising our voices around the world on July 6!