After Culling 36,000 Dogs China Ponders Animal Welfare Legislation

In response to a rabies outbreak, “dog beating squads” have been sent out to kill dogs in Hanzhong, China. As of yesterday, 36,000 dogs have been killed, which includes both strays and pets, vaccinated or not.

Animal lovers and animal rights groups are criticizing the Chinese government’s management tactics, along with other accounts of animal cruelty. However, since China currently has no animal welfare laws in place, there’s nothing that can be done legally to protect animals there. 

According to the International Fund for Animal Welfare’s Asia Regional Director, Grace Ge Gabriel, “Mass killing of dogs is ineffective in controlling rabies in the long-term. By choosing not to implement a sensible rabies vaccination program, Hanzhong government has failed to protect the health of its citizens. Furthermore, the brutal killing of dogs continues to highlight the need for legislation that will ensure the humane treatment of all animals.”

Peter Williams, Director of the World Society for Protection of Animals in China also pointed out that removing dogs could actually increase the spread of rabies by opening up an area for more animals to move into.

If there is a bright side to this, it’s that IFAW has been working with the Chinese government to draft national animal welfare laws that would protect animals, in addition to calling for vaccination and sterilization to address overpopulation issues.

Please send a letter through IFAW to the Chinese Ambassador to ask that they put an end to this cruelty. 

creative commons


Birgit K.
Birgit K5 years ago

In fact it is a shame that culls like this do happen in China and animals do not have any rights at all there.
But unfortunately the so-called civilized countries in the Western world do cull thousands of healthy “productive” livestock
every year when it comes to outbreaks of diseases e.g. foot and mouth disease, avian influenza or any other “dangerous disease”.
Where is the difference?? I am for sure not a friend of Chinese insensibility about animal abuse but unfortunately here in the middle of Europe especially in
Eastern Europe stray dogs are brutally bludgeoned to death or burned alive in mobile crematories when authorities let clean up streets in the forefront of the European soccer championship last year.
Unfortunately I have no hope that there will be a rethinking.
It is just that the majority of human beings in this world do not care that animals do not have any rights.

Laura G.
Laura Gregg5 years ago

I have to ask - as I'm amazed .. Why hasn't china got any animal rights laws in the year of 2013? Why after years and years of people pleading for respect for animals, have they not listened. Why is it such a hard task to say "we no longer accept cruelty and shall punish those who commit such a crime"

I suppose I'm destined to never care nor respect china.

Odin Torchwood
Odin Torchwood8 years ago

Animal welfare is essential to all of our furry (and non-furry) friends of our world. Hopefully it will soon be in place and put an end to these crimes against animals in China and the world.

Odin Torchwood
Odin Torchwood8 years ago

The Chinese government need to reform their murderous policies, what gives them the right to sent hit squads out to beat dogs to death stray and pets alike? I don't believe that (referring to another comment) the whole of Chinese people support this, if they did, why would so many of them have 'pets'? Rabies is no excuse for killing dogs unless the animal who IS infected is beyond curable status. Even then, they should be killed with dignity. Make this practice of dog butchery illegals.

Peter B.
Peter B.8 years ago

Yes I can see the concern and support it. But really, when the rights of humans count for so little in China, what chance for dogs? Check for info on 7000 Chinese labour/concentration camps, organ harvesting etc,,
If concerned people like you start to say something, this sickening situation can start to be addressed. If we don't, then it never will be and our children will know their parents were cowardly wimps. Worst of all, we'll know it ourselves!

Lisanne D.
Lisanne D8 years ago

My mom & I don't want to buy from China either, but what is there to buy that isn't made in China?? Can't even buy a toothbrush. Wake up America- pretty soon we will be forced to speak Chinese and eat our pets. Evil race of "people", that's for sure. Glad I was never able to visit China, I woud have been put in jail.

Jennifer Ppopoli
Jennifer Ppopoli8 years ago

Hello friends of all over the world, I can not believe that 36.000 baby brothers have been killed by chinese!!!! I wonder how could this be punished by any International LAW ! this cannot remain like this !Count on me to sign anything that could solve this Terrifiyng fact !!!

Susan B.
Susan B8 years ago

Hi Allene. Honestly, do I think the Chinese can change? Yes, I do. There is an admittedly small core of animal rescuers in China that do wonderful, hard, unappreciated work. And -there are a lot of animal lovers there who ARE horrified at what goes on. Animals Asia has a highly regarded education programme and they are able to work WITH local governments there. Beautiful New World does great cat rescue and has a trap,neuter and return programme for cats. If you are interested I can send you a list of small rescues within China that desperately need funds but if you are only happy with western run charities Animals Asia Foundation also needs help. You should look at their website and see the great work they are doing.

Allene Mathers
Allene Mathers8 years ago

Come on Folks ...They send to the United States Toys for Us to buy for our children with lead paint,plastic sandals that cause horrendous foot problems,gluten that maimes and kills our dogs and cats..Thats just for starters not to mention what they do to their own citizens...Do you think they really give a damn about critters?????Or are about to change their ways?????

Wanda P.
Wanda P8 years ago

Dogs and cats have parasites, and I wouldn't eat one. After years of eating meat that will probably kill us, we are trying to stop. I thought it would be easier than it is, sometimes I do not know what to eat.
China is very cruel to their animals, it breaks my heart. I saw picture of trainloads of cats piled on top of each other, waiting to be killed for their fur.
China is not in harmony with the earth..... and I believe what goes around comes around.... I have saw it happen to many times..... Hopefully Jane Goodall will have an influence on them...