When authorities closed an illegal dog meat farm in Gyeonggi-do, South Korea, 21 dogs were left behind. They were then saved by animal groups just days before the start of Bok Nal – the three hottest days of summer during which most dogs on farms are sold and killed for dog meat soup – and are now receiving veterinary care, as they get ready to move on to their forever homes.
Sangkyung Lee, Humane Society International/Korea’s dog meat campaign manager, said, “This dog farm is typical of so many across South Korea where thousands of dogs are languishing in filthy, deprived conditions, enduring the unimaginable frustration of being confined in tiny cages their whole lives until they are brutally killed by electrocution.
“Thankfully, we are able to bring a happy ending for these young dogs who will receive all the medical care and attention they need before flying to North America later in the year to seek adoptive homes.”
He added, “We urge President Yoon to ensure the national government immediately takes action to end the dog meat industry, so that no more dogs like these will have to endure this suffering for a food that most people in South Korea no longer wish to eat.”
With fewer and fewer Koreans consuming dog meat, many meat farms have been closing down across the country – and HSI runs a scheme which allows dog meat farmers to leave their failing business behind, transitioning to a more humane livelihood.
The farmer, Mr Hwang, has also signed an agreement never to farm dogs again. He said, “I make most of my money from doing handyman jobs, so that’s what I’ll continue to do now. When I took over the farm, the seller deceived me and my partner by telling us it would be a profitable business but it simply hasn’t been true.”
Gina Boehler, executive director of Korean K9 Rescue, added, “Korean K9 Rescue is happy to work in partnership with HSI in dismantling, and rescuing animals from, the Ansan dog meat farm. As the animals are suffering in the sweltering summer heat, we have moved quickly to remove them from an unbearable situation that no living being should endure.
“It’s important we keep pushing for reform and change to the agriculture laws within South Korea and effectively promote change from within. We are grateful for our collaboration with HSI and we know these dogs will go on to live a better life.
“We have seen and recognized the approval of most South Korean citizens who actively oppose the dog meat trade and lobby for change, which keeps our mission strong and alive.”