More than 2.5 million dogs a year are reared on thousands of dog meat farms across South Korea.
One by one the Humane Society International is closing them down and rescuing all the dogs. The most recent closure was a dog meat farm and puppy mill combo – making an awful situation even worse.
Dogs of all sizes and breeds were being kept in deplorable conditions. The farm was full of purebreds and mutts. The malnourished dogs with matted fur were in cramped rusted cages begging to be rescued. Puppies bred to sell at auction as pets would be killed for meat if they did not sell.
In total, 200 dogs were rescued from the farm and flown to shelters in the U.S. and Canada. The dogs will experience a loving touch and soft bed for the first time in their lives. All will be examined and then put up for adoption.
Sadly, the lines between puppy mill and dog meat farm are often blurred in South Korea. The farmer is a 60-year-old man who said he didn’t have another choice, until he met another farmer who HSI helped exit the cruel industry. Farmer Lee’s family did not approve of his farm and he is looking forward to a new career as a security guard.
“These dogs are suffering at the hands of two abusive industries, their ultimate fate depending on whether they will sell for more money as a pet or for meat. They all start life in this depressing, squalid place, with the lucky few ending up being a loved companion whilst their cage mates are served at a restaurant or enter a chain of auctions where they are sold on to the next farmer to produce litter after litter of puppies. Korean consumers will be shocked to see that the dog meat they buy in restaurants or from markets could come from the very same dogs they see in the pet shop window,” states HSI campaigner, Nara Kim.
Article continues below
Our Featured Programs
See how we’re making a difference for People, Pets, and the Planet and how you can get involved!
HSI requires the farmers to sign a contract stating they will not use the land for any animal trade. All the cages are demolished before the rescue teams leaves. The non-profit returns to check up on the farmer and ensure they are abiding. In return, HSI helps the farmer change careers.
Farmer Lee said: “I feel very ashamed to be a dog meat farmer and a puppy mill farmer so I barely tell anyone what I’m doing.”
Less and less South Koreans are eating dog meat and a survey found 70% said they would not eat dog meat in the future.
As for rescued dogs, they will all go on to find loving forever homes. HSI ensures that all the dogs are tested and up to date on vaccines before they travel. “At each dog meat farm closure, HSI has a veterinarian test for the presence of the H3N2, or dog flu, virus at the time the dogs receive their rabies, DHPP, and corona virus vaccines. HSI also vaccinates the dogs for distemper, parvo and coronavirus. HSI then quarantines the dogs on the farm or at a temporary shelter with no dogs permitted in or out for at least 30 days prior to transport overseas.” Each will receive all the necessary medical care and then go to a home where they will be loved unconditionally.
“No matter where the dogs go, the conditions at this farm are horrifying. For them the nightmare is over, and we hope that by exposing their suffering we can hasten the end of the entire industry for good,” said Kim.
Fosters around the country are taking in the rescued dogs to shower them with love until they are ready to be adopted. If you are interested in adopting one of the dogs, you can contact the shelters directly. Click here for a list of all the U.S. Shelters.
Watch Billy, one of the dogs rescued, experience a loving embrace for the first time in the video below. You will also witness the horrific conditions where the dogs were kept.
Help Rescue Animals
Provide food and vital supplies to shelter pets at The Animal Rescue Site for free! →