Chinese dogs saved from cooking pot

2011-04-18 09:01

Beijing - Hundreds of dogs being trucked to Chinese restaurants were spared a culinary fate after about 200 animal lovers mobilised to stop them ending up on dinner tables, state-run media said on Monday.

A truck crammed with the dogs was forced to stop on Friday on a highway in eastern Beijing by a motorist who swerved his car in front of the truck and then used his microblog to alert animal-rights activists, reports said.

The dogs, many apparently stolen from their owners, were being transported from the central Chinese province of Henan to restaurants in Jilin province in the northeast, the China Daily said. It said 430 dogs were rescued, while the Global Times put the number at 520.

Eventually, about 200 animal lovers and activists gathered around the truck in eastern Beijing and after a 15-hour standoff that jammed traffic the dogs were freed early on Saturday when an animal-protection group purchased them for $17 600, the Global Times said.

The interception of the dogs was the latest bold action by pet-lovers in China, where growing awareness of animal rights is colliding with centuries-old culinary practices.

There have been regular reports in recent years of citizens attempting to block trucks carrying hundreds or even thousands of cats to meat markets in southern China, where cat meat is particularly popular.

Legal action unlikely

The China Daily quoted activists saying many of the dogs still had collars with bells and name tags, indicating they had been stolen from their owners and that the trucking company transported a load of dogs to Jilin each week.

The consumption of dog and cat meat, both of which are believed to promote bodily warmth and are thus popular in winter, remains widespread in China despite a surge in popularity as pets.

However, earlier press reports have said authorities were looking into drafting a law that could outlaw the practice.

The reports on the dog rescue suggested the truck company was unlikely to face legal action as it had all the necessary permits to transport the animals.

The healthy dogs were to be made available for adoption in one month while the sick ones, suffering variously from dehydration and infectious diseases, were sent to pet hospitals in Beijing.

  • Jorg - 2011-04-18 09:16

    ...this is great news....finally.. guess there are some caring humans in China...i pray for a swift change in policy in this regard...

  • Lesley - 2011-04-18 09:36

    Phew! Hopefully this barbaric practice is stopped real soon! More should be done to protect all pets all over the world... Shame on you Chinese people!

      Chum Scrubber - 2011-12-02 14:49

      Congratulations Chinese people, for being able to move away from this culture and starting to value the love and companioship dogs give. This is very positive news. It'll still take a long time, but I see light at the end of the tunnel for animals in China. Hopefully the industrial animal farming practices of the West will also one day see the light - but I guess now the only value we have is "economics". Sick.

  • Charmayne - 2011-04-18 10:01

    this practice is despicable, these poor animals are submerged alive into boiling vats, hope that the individuals who enjoy this custom suffer the severest form of indigestion known to man!!! Hats off to the animal rights activists, the law outlawing this sick practice needs to be drafted ASAP!!!!

  • Nuggit - 2011-04-18 10:14

    I don't think its fair that we stop an age old tradition just because it doesn't conform to our beliefs. I mean you don't see indians coming to our country and stopping us from killing cows. Meat is meat no matter what animal your getting it from. - 2011-04-18 10:23

      Meat is meat?! I suppose been a vegan and a animal activist i find this statement extremely offensive! If someone came in your yard and stole your pets saying "sorry its my way" you would not stop them??

      zena - 2011-04-18 10:35

      Don't even have words for you.....someone like you will never get the bigger picture.

      Looter - 2011-04-18 16:13

      I agree with you Nuggit, dogs are food just like we are! I own tarantulas and you dont see me jumping up in arms because they eat arachnids! As long as its done humanly then why should we have any issue? If you eat meat you cant comment!

      Muriel - 2011-04-19 18:28

      c bien pourquoi on ne doit manger aucune viande;l'homme n'est pas un carnivore;es-ce que les animaux sauvages,les seuls carnivores élèvent des animaux pour se nourrir?et que dire de tous ces "pauvres humains,ah bon"malades psychiques a force d'engloutir le stress de tous ces animaux torturés pour le seul plaisir de leur palais.un animal est un etre vivant qui souffre avant d'etre tuer,torturer et il ne peut s'empecher d'envoyer dans son sang et ça se communique a sa viande,des poisons sous la torture.quand l'humanité sera réellement humaine,elle comprendra que l'on n'a pas besoin de protéines animales.

      Chum Scrubber - 2011-12-02 14:51

      You can't see the difference Nuggit? Try opening your eyes - but I do agree with you, we need to change a lot as well before preaching holier than thow.

      Chum Scrubber - 2011-12-02 14:53

      Looter, these dogs are not eaten humanely. They actually purposefully terrify them before killing them, the adrenelin does something to the texture of the meat. So no, not just another form of meat.

  • KD - 2011-04-18 10:37

    @ Jorg and Lesley, unless you are both vegetarian, you are absolute hypocrites. Why is one animal's life worth more than another? You get up in arms about high-profile animals, while being complicit in the torture and murder of other animals every day. NO shame on YOU.

      Chum Scrubber - 2011-12-02 15:00

      I agree on part of what you are saying - classic example is big game fishing, all cry when the sailfish hangs on the gantry, but nobody cares for the cuda lying dead on the ground next to it. But eating stolen pets - sorry, you obviously don't have a pet or don't like them, its pointless trying to explain to you that there is a difference. And do the mentioned posters say they don't care about other animals?

  • DanJozi - 2011-04-18 20:16

    Nugget, Looter, KD - All I can say is I hope you visit these restaurants in China and get wiped out by a Tsunami!

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