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Yulin Dog Meat Festival Held Again in China

HEARTBREAKING: The Yulin Festival continues despite China's declassification of dogs as food.
September 21, 2022
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Despite international rejection and the Chinese government’s removal of dogs from its official list that of animals that can be raised and sold commercially for consumption, the Yulin Dog Meat Festival began over the weekend on June 21. The controversial event promotes the brutal slaughter of dogs and cats and the consumption of their meat.

THE DETAILS: In a video recorded by the Humane Society, rows of dog carcasses on tables and live puppies are shown being sold at a market outside Yulin—all of which are done in flagrant violation of the recent decree by the Chinese Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs reclassifying dogs as pets rather than for consumption. This classification is already in effect for cats.

STOLEN AND FORCED TO SUFFER: Most of the dogs and cats killed for the festival are obtained illegally; captured in their homes or on the streets and then transported thousands of miles to Yulin. During the journey, they go without water and food while stuffed into overcrowded in cages. Many are sick or dying at the time they are killed.  In footage obtained by Animal Equality during our numerous investigations, the dog meat industry’s cruelty was on full display with footage showing animals beaten and killed while fully conscious. 

WHAT ABOUT ENFORCEMENT?: Although China’s measure to reclassify dogs does not mean a total ban on the consumption of dog meat, the distinction does prohibit the sale of live dogs and dog meat as food and, in addition, makes it illegal for dog meat to be sold in restaurants, markets and slaughterhouses. The cities of Shenzhen and Zhuhai have also expressly banned the consumption of cat and dog meat. With all that said, the fact that Yulin’s Dog Meat Festival is even taking place is extremely disconcerting. We are monitoring the situation on the ground to see what Chinese authorities choose to do now that the festival has begun seemingly in violation of the government’s mandate. 

WHAT YOU CAN DO: Though every year the festival receives the world’s condemnation from activists and organizations alike, this year’s event in under even more intense scrutiny given the  COVID-19 pandemic believed to have been started in a wet market in Wuhan, China. These live animal markets are very similar to the markets where live dogs and cats are unceremoniously slaughtered, bringing disease and cruel conditions ripe for future outbreaks.

While these markets are unbelievably cruel to the animals who suffer within them, they also present a danger to humans. It is up to people like you to stand up and end this abuse. Please use your power to give voice to the voiceless – share our investigations on the dog and cat meat trade and help us in calling for the ban of festivals like the despicable one in Yulin. 

All species have the ability to feel pain and fear. Help animals here at home simply by leaving them off your plate!

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