5 Facts About the Yulin Dog Meat Festival

On the summer solstice June 21, the Yulin Dog Meat Festival will yet again get underway in China. Here are some important things to know about this cruel “celebration.”

1. It is not an old tradition.

Known formally as the Lychee and Dog Meat Festival, this 10-day event in Yulin does not date back hundreds of years and has no cultural value. It began in 2010 as a marketing ploy for dog meat vendors to increase sales at the beginning of summer.

Elsewhere in China, dog meat is usually eaten in the winter because it is believed to be warming by stimulating internal heat, according to Amy Lin in the New York Times. The festival promotes the meat as bringing good luck and health.

2. Over 10,000 dogs have been killed during the festival every year.

Many of the dogs (and cats) killed during the festival are stolen pets –some still wearing their collars, reportsHumane Society International (HSI). Dogs are crammed into small wire cages piled atop each other on the back of trucks, and then driven hundreds of miles to Yulin. Due to the lack of food and water along the way, some of the dogs die of starvation or dehydration before they get there — which may actually be a blessing.

While 10,000 to 15,000 dogs were slaughtered annually during the first few years when the festival was the most popular, those numbers have dropped to under 1,000 in recent years, according toAnimals Asia.

3. The dogs are not humanely euthanized.

Because adrenaline is believed to make the meat taste better, dogs are killed in horrific ways –among them are being beaten with clubs, skinned or boiled alive –as other doomed dogs look on. There are over 100 slaughterhouses in Yulin in which as many as 2,000 dogs have been killed each day during the festival.

4. Hundreds of dogs have been rescued before becoming dinner.

Global and local animal groups including HSI, Animals Asia, Animal Hope and Wellness and Direct Action Everywhere are working tirelessly to rescue dogs destined for Yulin or China’s meat trade.

Marc Ching, an American animal lover, is among the people who’ve gone out of their way to save hundreds of these dogs. Lisa Vanderpump of “Real Housewives of Beverly Hills” has rescued Yulin dogs and used the show as a platform to raise awareness of the festival.

5. Animal activists are helping to put a permanent end to this cruel festival.

Because of the growing global outrage and terrible PR, the government of Yulin disassociated itself from the festival in 2014. In recent years the festival has been held inside restaurants instead of in large outdoor areas.

This year, for the first time since the festival’s inception, the sale of dog meat has reportedly been banned. If this is true, it’s an important step, but the festival needs to be ended and dog meat needs to permanently be banned throughout China. A positive sign is that the majority of Chinese (64 percent) want to ban the festival, according to a poll last year. More than half want to end the dog meat trade altogether.

The efforts of Care2 members worldwide have helped to make a difference. Last June, a petition with 11 million signatures that called for an end to the Yulin dog meat festival was delivered to the Chinese embassy in London. The late Carrie Fisher was one of the campaigners who helped send the petition on its way.

Please join more than 1.2 million Care2 members by signing and sharing this petition to end the cruel Yulin Dog Meat Festival.

Photo credit: YouTube

150 comments

Frances G
Frances Gabout a month ago

thanks very much

SEND
Chrissie R
Chrissie R5 months ago

Thanks for posting. (?)

SEND
Glennis W
Glennis Whitney5 months ago

So horrible and sickening Thank you for caring and sharing

SEND
Glennis W
Glennis Whitney5 months ago

Deplorable and despicable Thank you for caring and sharing

SEND
Glennis W
Glennis Whitney5 months ago

Petition signed and shared Thank you for caring and sharing

SEND
Glennis W
Glennis Whitney5 months ago

Cruel BASTARDS Thank you for caring and sharing

SEND
Danuta W
Danuta W5 months ago

Thanks for sharing.

SEND
Carole R
Carole R5 months ago

This is just awful. It has to be stopped.

SEND
Cindy S
Cindy Smith6 months ago

disgusting

SEND
Chrissie R
Chrissie R10 months ago

Petition already signed along with dozens of others to end this atrocity once and for all.

SEND