5 Shocking Facts About the Asian Dog Meat Industry
Every year in Asia, millions of dogs are slaughtered for food. In the lead up to Giving Tuesday, and to support our campaign against dog meat, we want to share with our supporters 5 shocking facts about this cruel trade.
1. The numbers of animals affected are staggering. China is the world's largest consumer of dog meat, with 10 - 20 million dogs killed each year. About 10,000 - 15,000 of these are killed as part of the Yulin Dog Meat Festival, which has been held every year since 2009 despite international outrage.
2. Dogs are often tortured before being killed. Due to the widespread erroneous belief among people who eat dogs that adrenaline helps improve the quality of the meat, dogs are routinely tortured before being sent to the slaughter. Methods can include clubbing, burning, and live-skinning; some videos have emerged of dogs being boiled alive or having limbs sawed off.
3. Not even dogs who are family companions are safe. Several videos have emerged from slaughterhouses showing dogs with collars around their necks, which suggests they were stolen from their homes. A 2015 article from the South China Morning Post commented that "inside two other slaughterhouses hidden in residential areas not far from the market, dogs and cats, many wearing collars, displayed behavior associated with household pets."
4. The public's opinions are split. Despite the tradition of eating dog meat existing among some parts of the population for thousands of years in countries such as China, there is a rapidly growing section of society that profoundly disagrees with the practice. In 2014, a petition against dog meat was held on Weibo, one of China's largest social media platforms. Over 3,000,000 Chinese citizens signed, urging the then Minister of Agriculture to end the trade once and for all. Commentators have also noted that the younger generation and countless advocates for animals in the country are less willing to tolerate the practice.
5. There is still hope. In August 2019, In Defense of Animals and Jindo Love Rescue seized 28 dogs who would have ended up in the slaughterhouses of South Korea. At the time of rescue, the dogs were being held in appalling conditions - stacked on top of each other in cramped cages with no room to move. With our help, these dogs are now experiencing a very different fate. Also, just last month, the city of Seoul in South Korea announced that it was closing its last canine slaughterhouses.
Whilst there is much progress to still be made across Asia, the recent developments in South Korea suggest that the tide is turning. Change is often slow, but the more support we have from people like you, the faster we can save dogs in Asia from landing on dinner plates.
We urgently need your help to raise $10,000 to sustain our lifesaving work, including the Ditch Dog Meat campaign, before Giving Tuesday on December 3rd, 2019. Please, make a donation today or help end the dog meat trade forever by starting your own Facebook fundraiser for In Defense of Animals.