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Thousands of terrified dogs — many of them stolen pets — are expected to be butchered for human consumption at a dog eating “celebration” that began on June 21.

Forced to travel long distances and crammed into crowded wire cages, the dogs will languish without food or water as they await their fate. They will watch on as those before them have their throats slit. Many are reportedly beaten — even burned or boiled alive.

1000-yulin-dogs-in-cages

The Yulin Festival

The Yulin dog eating festival actually only began in 2010. It was started by dog meat traders as a way to boost business but has quickly attracted the ire of the international community.

As distressing as the news is, there is comfort to be found in the extraordinary mainstream media coverage and the public outrage that is accompanying it. Worldwide, concern for animals and their welfare is on the rise — as is the public’s determination to force positive change.

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Brilliant campaign work by Animals Asia and Humane Society International has given global recognition to the victims of this event. This follows years of investigations and on-the-ground work by Animals Asia to end the trade of dogs and cats for food. So intense has the international pressure become that last year the city of Yulin vowed to not support the festival. It still went ahead. But, fortunately, fewer dogs were slaughtered.

Since then, Yulin authorities have attempted to appease the international community by claiming this year’s event will be cancelled entirely — but investigations revealed that preparations for the cruel festival happened anyway and the festival went off, unhindered, June 21st.

With petitions now reaching the millions (you can sign one here), the unprecedented international pressure on Yulin to permanently cancel the dog eating festival may soon be successful.

Shifting Cultural Perceptions to Promote Compassion

But without cultural change, any victory is likely to be short-lived. Because unless those who have grown up eating dogs learn to widen their circle of compassion to recognise dogs as “friends,”  not “food” — China’s dogs will always be at risk.

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To a Westerner, it seems unfathomable that some people might see no ethical problem with consuming “man’s best friend.” Even to Chinese urbanites who have grown to love dogs as pets — the practice is unthinkable. But for those whose ancestors have eaten dogs for thousands of years, the power of cultural conditioning is profound.

It’s nearly impossible to comprehend — until you realize that in our own countries we are the victims of the very same cultural conditioning.

We too have been raised into a society that has normalized the slaughter and consumption of highly intelligent domestic animals — animals who are capable of experiencing fear and suffering — animals who will show affection, if given the chance. But rather than “dogs” and “cats,” we call them “pigs,” “lambs,” “cows” and “chickens.”

We will create a kinder, more caring society for ourselves if we can all widen our circle of compassion to those we have been taught to think of as “food,” rather than “friend.” Like people in China who value dogs only for their meat, many of us have simply never been given the opportunity to appreciate “food” animals for the unique and curious individuals that they are.

Scientists now know that cows have best friends; that sheep can learn to respond to their own name; that chickens exhibit cognitive abilities beyond that of young children; and that pigs show empathy and can play computer games designed for chimpanzees … And yet our own heritage has paved a pathway that has led us to confine, abuse, and kill these living, breathing individuals en masse — in modern day factory farms and slaughterhouses. We kid ourselves that they are just “dumb animals.” But science has proven they are anything but.

For many, the outrage at the thought of “dog stew” is only matched by the frustration at only being able to register protest by way of a petition signature. But we are not powerless to end this suffering. By making kinder choices, we can impact the lives of needy animals in a very real way, every single day. Take a leap of kindness this week. Sign a petition to help dogs in China — and then enjoy a delicious meat-free meal to help equally deserving animals right here at home.

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31 comments on “How the Yulin Dog Meat Festival is a Wake Up Call for the Meat Eating World”

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Christine Glass
1 Years Ago

Meat\'s no treat for those you eat---PETA saying and true. This is disgusting and people really need to stop and think about what they are doing before they mistreat animals. Animals are not, despite common thinking, here to be used and abused by humans. We will never be truly civilized until we develop respect for all life forms---and for everything---not just ourselves. This is a fine example of lack of education, empathy and compassion for our fellow earthlings.


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Pete
30 Jun 2015

As long as we\'re so "civilized" as to keep on mistreating, abusing, raping and killing other humans, just for revenge, "under orders" from politicians and other mafiosos, or even for fun, I see little incentives for depriving me of my chops or steaks. After all, they\'re jummy.

Tamara
1 Years Ago

It\'s so sick. They are killing and torchuring these animals all for so damn food , you are sick f#cks. Good thing it doesn\'t happen in my country, I would open fire.


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Bridgette Orozco
1 Years Ago

Absolutely horrific, disgusting and cruel. I don\'t see much difference between those people and the people in America that eat animal meat. I don\'t understand how people can have this dichotomy of "loving" animals, be appalled by the people of china for this festival but still eat animals themselves.


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lena
1 Years Ago

I REALLY want to see to burn in hell all these people who did it. ALL OF THEM ...ALL and those who approve tests on animals, those who wearing furs, those who throwing rubbish into the water. All these pieces of shit I want see them burning.


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declan hedderman
29 Jun 2015

if you look at all the earthquakes hitting china and japan it should go to give you an example of the rest of what has to come for them as this has angered all the good gods humans dont behave in this way?

Knight
1 Years Ago

I received a message on whatsapp as an appeal to oppose this Yulin dog Meat Festival it came from A girl who boastfully says she cant spend a single day without having nonveg in her meal. As long as Such hypocrites are there you cant think of stopping these things, dogs and other animals including Goats, cows and Chickens and other aquatic animals they all feel pain and suffer a lot so why cry for dog only ??
china is one of the biggest markets and is very infamous for animal products including fur and killing endangered species. we can simply boycott chinese made products and support the animal rights so make the world aware about these things and spread the word to save the mother nature.


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Joel Nazaretian
2 Years Ago

THIS IS WHY I DESPISE ASIANS...ALL OF THEM! WOULD NOT TRUST THEM ANY FURTHER THAN I COULD THROW THEM. I WOULD PERSONALLY LIKE TO TAKE A MACHETTE AND CHOP ALL OF THEIR HEADS OFF! YOU THINK ISIS IS BAD...IF IT WERE LEGAL TO DO SO, I WOULD MAKE ISIS LOOK LIKE CHILDS PLAY AFTER I GOT DONE TORTURING THESE FISH HEADS!


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iman asian
26 Jun 2015

bro not all asian people do that, chill tf out bro

Jenna
28 Jun 2015

People are animals too! I agree that a lot of them suck, but your just as bad as they are if your comment says anything about your true nature. Please don\'t generalize and stereotype cultures or groups. All your doing is showing off your ignorant beliefs and opinions which will offend people. Then they become angry and feel more empowered to do the very thing that made you angry in the first place. Except perhaps with more vigor than before. Their actions deeply sadden and anger me as a pet professional, and I understand how you could feel this way about this disgusting horrific display of cruelty they call a "festival". However, understand that different people from all over the world torture helpless animals, it is not an act reserved for Asians. Your prejudice against them is quite similar to the prejudice these specific people have towards dogs, and cats. The difference being, you want to torture and kill solely from hate, and these peoples intention is a meal. I\'m not justifying their actions, just making a comparison.

Bridgette Orozco
29 Jun 2015

How are americans that eat beef, chicken, fish or any other type of animal any different? you\'re sick in the head and used this to justify your racism.

Kaitlyn Gosiaco
29 Jun 2015

Really now? This is similar to saying that I despise Americans because they brutally torture livestock. Not everyone does it, and most definitely not everyone agrees with it. I have been an animal activist for the past 3 years, volunteered at numerous shelters, and I am only 15 years old. I am Chinese, and though I am not proud of Yulin\'s actions, I know for a fact that even locals there are fighting to end that festival. Stop being racist and get over yourself.

Joel Nazaretian
30 Jun 2015

All of you are exactly right, and I apologize for my rude, nasty and unwarranted remarks, they are completely baseless. I allow my emotions to get the better of me when it comes to animal and child abuse. I am sincerely sorry if I offended anyone.

Nikki
14 Jul 2015

dont generalized . i dont support this kind of doings and im against of yulin festival or eaing of dogs !

Beth
2 Years Ago

\'\'We are each of us responsible for the evil we may have prevented\'\' - James Martineau


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Sibel Hodge
2 Years Ago

People are rightly angry and upset about what is happening in China with the Yulin dog eating festival but this is not just a problem happening in China. Millions of dogs and cats die horrendous, excruciating deaths in China and other countries to feed their people, but there’s actually no difference between Yulin and our meat industry but that barely registers public concern.

The only difference between eating dogs in the east and cows, chickens, pigs, etc, in the west is cultural perception of what is OK to eat and kill and wear. So if Yulin has outraged you, then you should really be outraged about what is happening to all these animals. It\'s all barbaric cruelty. A dog is a cow is a pig is a boy. They\'re all sentient. They all feel pain and fear. Otherwise the outrage is hypocrisy/speciesism/and selective denial.

Farm animals also suffer the same torture prior to their death, put into boiling tanks, beaten. They are crammed into cages where they can’t even turn around and into transporters where they get horrific injuries, some frozen to death being moved in the freezing cold weather with no protection from the elements, some over heat and die as no sources of water are available. They are boiled alive, have their beaks/testicles cut off/dehorned with no anesthetic, kept permanently impregnated, routinely have their throats cut and left to bleed out/skinned and dismembered while they are still alive. They are gassed/electrocuted/stunned incorrectly. Baby chicks are ground up alive. Animals live covered in filth, with injuries, have fur/feathers pulled out while still alive (there is a lot of video footage around to support all of this). Does this sound as horrific as Yulin?


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mongibello
28 Jun 2015

agree with every word you say. btw i\'m a veggie!

LYNN
2 Years Ago

THESE PEOPLE (IF YOU WANT TO CALL THEM THAT!) ARE WORSE THAN ANY ANIMAL ON EARTH!!!!!!!!! THEY DON\'T DESERVE TO BREATHE PERIOD!!!!!!!!! THEY NEED TO BE WIPED OFF THE PLANET!!!!!!!!!!!


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LYNN
2 Years Ago

THESE PEOPLE ( IF YOU WANT TO CALL THEM THAT!) ARE WORSE THAN ANY ANIMAL ON EARTH & THEY DON\'T DESERVE TO BREATHE PERIOD!!!!!!!!! THEY SHOULD BE WIPED OFF OF THE PLANET!!!!!!!!


Reply


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