What's wrong with eating dog meat?
A Chinese animal lover consoles a dog after a convoy of trucks carrying some 500 dogs to be sold as meat, were stopped along a highway in Beijing on early April 17, 2011, and the dogs were later rescued to the China Animal Protection Association. There were about 58 million pet dogs in 20 major Chinese cities at the end of 2009 and the figure is rising about 30 percent each year, according to a survey, as pet owners in China spend an estimated two billion USD a year on their animals.
June 30th, 2011
02:05 PM ET

What's wrong with eating dog meat?

By , Global Post

Barbecued dog and steamed paws?

These and so much more were to be had at this weekend's dog meat festival near Seoul.

Alas, it was not to be.

Animal rights activists put up such a stink that the organizers, from the Korea Dog Farmers' Association, said there was no way they could go through with the event.

"We couldn't possibly go on with the plan due to endless phone calls of complaint ... now there are few willing to rent us a place for the event," Ann Yong-Geun, a professor of nutrition at Chung Cheong University and an advisor to the association, told AFP.

Organizers of the festival had wanted to showcase the positive side of the dog meat industry in South Korea, where there are about 600 farms that raise dogs for meat, according to Ann.

Dog soup, or Boshintang, is a summer delicacy in South Korea, though the Wall Street Journal reports that it isn't as popular as the media would make it seem.

A minority of people eat it regularly. It’s consumed most frequently in summer but is available year-round. And it’s more popular with men than women and is said to possess qualities that "help stamina."

They were, for example, going to show videos of farms raising dogs under sanitary conditions — something, they will tell you, that would become a more ubiquitous practice were the industry legalized and regulated.

But for many activists, the humane treatment of the dogs is beside the point. To them, dogs are companions not a main course, end of story.

Read: North Korean propaganda.

The irony is that in South Korea, that wasn't really true until more recently. And even now, it's really only true in the city, where they raise "pet dogs," as opposed to "meat dogs."

As William Saletan wrote in Slate a few years back:

In the country, they raise "meat dogs," also known as "junk dogs" and "lower-grade" dogs. But you don't become a "lower-grade" dog by flunking an IQ test. You're just born in the wrong place. Then you're slaughtered and fed to a man who thinks he's humane because he pampers a Golden Retriever that has half your brains.

So, what's really wrong with eating dog? Just because we don't do it in the U.S. doesn't seem to make for a very good argument.

GlobalPost's Dog Meat Mafia series, delves into the seedy world of the booming dog meat industry in Southeast Asia.

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Topics: China • Culture • East Asia

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soundoff (2,493 Responses)
  1. Disgusted

    Do you know how many millions of dogs are killed in the shelters in the US every year? So really, no need for you people to be holier than thou. You guys are dog killers too. Try walking into an animal shelter sometime and see how many dogs are waiting to die.

    August 19, 2014 at 11:15 pm | Reply
  2. aLjon from philippines !

    I EAT A LOT OF DOG MEAT EARLIER , CUZ MY FRIEND IS HAVING A BIRTHDAY CELEBRATION HAVING FUN AND GET DRANK THO IT TASTE GOOD !! BUT HONESTLY I HATE DOGS BEING EATEN ,, BY THE WAY I EAT IT BECAUSE THEY SAID THAT IT WAS A GOAT MEAT THEN AFTER THE PARTY THEY TOLD ME THAT IT WAS`NT A GOAT BUT ITS A DOG ,, I FEEL BITTER THAT TIME !!!!! HERE IN PHILIPPINES SOME OF THE PEOPLE HERE EAT DOGS BUT I DONT REALLY AGREE WITH THEM I HATE THEM, LOVE DOGS AND CATS ..................CUZ THEY ARE THE MOST FRIENDLY AND MOST COMPASSIONATE, TRUSTWORTHY, LOVELY ANIMALS IN THE ENTIRE EARTH .. JUST EAT CROCS ,SHARKS, DINASAURS ,ETC BUT NOT DOGS !!

    August 23, 2014 at 8:21 am | Reply
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  4. tixy

    Mmmm then humans should be next yum baby is good for you .so young and juicy

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