386 dogs rescued from truck on their way to China’s dog meat festival | Animal welfare

Chinese police have intercepted a truck transporting 386 dogs for slaughter at the annual dog meat-eating festival in the southern Chinese city of Yulin, which is scheduled to start on Tuesday – the day of the summer solstice.

Footage from the scene showed that the dogs were crammed into steel cages under poor conditions. When they discovered the truck last weekend, animal rights activists worried that some of them might be suffering from infectious diseases. So they reported the truck to the police, citing the country’s legislation on epidemic prevention.

Lin Xiong, one of the activists who saw the truck being pulled over by the police, said: “It was cruel to see so many dogs in such a terrible condition, it was like a truck from hell for these poor animals… Dog meat slaughter brings shame across the country and therefore we will continue to fight until we see an end to this suffering. “

Ahead of this year’s Yulin Dog Meat Festival, which draws a small crowd in the city, Chinese activists found creative ways to save dogs from being killed.

Xiao He, a Shaanxi-based animal rights activist, said he had worked for several weeks with other activists to review China’s existing laws and regulations to persuade authorities to stop the incident from happening.

“There are regulations that articulate how to treat animals, such as statutory quarantine control certificates. But apparently those who carried the dogs did not follow the rules. We must remind them as well as the authorities [of those regulations],” He said.

In 2020, China’s Ministry of Agriculture and Agriculture said that dogs are not “pets” to eat, but rather pets.

Campaigns that have been involved in rescuing the dogs on board said they were of different breeds, sizes and health conditions. They said they were probably stolen housekeepers or pets, strays from the streets or other unknown sources with no trace.

After the police intervention this weekend, the dogs were sent to quarantine. Chinese activists told the Guardian that the dogs have now been handed over to the Beijing Capital Animal Welfare Association, after the traders signed an agreement to relinquish ownership of the animals.

Peter Li, a China policy specialist at Humane Society International, a campaign group, said the Yulin authorities were “tricked” by traders who have erroneously claimed that dog meat consumption is “traditional” and part of the local diet culture. “The consumption of dog meat is supply-driven, driven by traders, not consumer-driven. The dog slaughter in Yulin is commercial, not cultural, he said.

Li said his team on the ground saw Yulin police try to prevent business owners from making a show about the “festival.”

“Eaters outside Guangxi used to be significant before 2014. This group has declined drastically, especially since 2020. Most eaters are local, and the number has dropped.”