South korea: 200 dogs saved from the slaughterhouse

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A rescue of approximately 200 dogs destined for the slaughterhouse, began Wednesday in South Korea, where the pressure rises to stop the habit of killing these canines for their meat.

About a million dogs are eaten each year in South Korea. Their meat, boiled to keep it soft and supposed to give energy, is a popular dish in the summer.

This tradition, criticized abroad, disclaims, however, as that changes the perception of dogs in the countries where they are increasingly considered as pets and not livestock. In the younger generations, eating dog is now taboo.

The rescue operation, launched by the group animal protection Humane Society International (HSI), will retrieve about 200 dogs in a specialized farm in the county of Hongseong, 150 kilometers south of Seoul.

The dogs will be then sent for adoption in Canada and the United States.

“These dogs are not different from the other dogs, once they receive the caring and loving that they deserve and that they need “, explains to the AFP, Kelly O’meara, a person in charge of HSI.

The farm is the 14th institution of which HSI gets the closure from 2015. In total, about 1,600 dogs have been saved during this period, according to the organization, which helps the operators to shift their focus. One of them has transformed her farm dog breeding to grow blueberries.

Lee Sang-gu, the owner of the farm in Hongseong, explained that the breeding of dogs was ” more cost effective “, noting that he and his family were opposed to the consumption of meat canine.

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According to a survey conducted in 2017, 70 % of South Koreans do not eat dog, but only 40% believe the practice should be prohibited. At the same time, 65 % are in favour of an improvement of the conditions of rearing and slaughter of dogs.

The main slaughterhouse of dogs in the country, in the city of Seongnam south of Seoul, was destroyed in November. Activists question animal have been found in the equipment of electric shock and a bunch of dogs dead on the floor.

No law currently regulates the manner of raising or slaughtering dogs for meat in South Korea. The breeders wish to include the dogs in their regulations on the livestock, but the militants oppose it, and argued instead for the complete abolition of these practices.