As shocking as it is to people in the U.S., the international community, and even Chinese citizens, June 21 will mark the beginning of the Yulin Dog Meat Festival, an event in China where participants mark the summer solstice by eating dog meat and lychees. While details of the festival have been heartbreaking for many to hear, China currently has no animal cruelty laws and so the consumption of dog and cat meat is completely legal. The event will see the slaughter of 10,000 dogs if not more.
As we inch closer to the start of the festival, animal welfare organizations are going into overdrive and doing everything they can to save as many animals as possible. Take Humane Society International (HSI), for example. Workers of this organization are staying alert, trying to track down as many dog meat traders as possible before they reach the slaughterhouse. In fact, they were just able to save 20 dogs from a local trader!
These dogs are kept in rusty wire cages in filthy conditions. Many of them suffer terrible injuries, and sometimes even death, just from this unsanitary and dangerous transport.
If these dogs had reached the festival, they would have had to witness some truly horrible scenes. Dogs can be clubbed over the head or have their throats slit, and then are thrown into boiling water.
And the worst part is many of the animals at the festival are actually stolen pets, clad in collars and sometimes even microchipped!
One can only imagine the terrible scenes and abuse these dogs have already been subjected to. You can see the fear and uncertainty in their eyes.
Unfortunately, Yulin’s festival is just a snippet of the year-round consumption of dog meat in the city. It is estimated that 10 million dogs are slaughtered each year.
Thankfully, the cruel journey these 20 pups have endured until now is finally coming to an end! They are now on their way to a shelter where they will receive veterinary care and loving attention.
While we’re glad that these pups will never know how close they came to a grim death, there is unfortunately much work to be done to end this cruel festival once and for all. If you’d like to find out how you can help the cause, visit Humane Society International’s website.
All Images Source: Humane Society International/Facebook