China bans ancient dog-eating festival after online uproar
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. (Getty Images)
September 22nd, 2011
04:25 PM ET

China bans ancient dog-eating festival after online uproar

Editor's Note: The following text is from GlobalPost, which provides excellent coverage of world news – importantmoving and just odd.

China has banned a dog-eating festival that dates back more than 600 years after a Chinese internet uproar over the way dogs are slaughtered, the official Xinhua news agency reports.

Dogs are chopped up and skinned in the streets of Qianxi township in coastal Zhejiang province during the ancient festival, which is usually held in October, state-run Xinhua says.

The festival marks a local military victory during the Ming dynasty, in which dogs in Qianxi were killed so they would not bark and alert the enemy. 

After the victory, dog meat was served at a celebratory feast, and since then local people have eaten dog meat at temple fairs held during traditional Chinese holidays.

"The ancient fair was replaced by a modern commodity fair in the 1980s, but dog eating has been kept as a tradition," Xinhua says.

"However, vendors began to butcher dogs in public a few years ago to show their dog meat is fresh and safe, as a way to ease buyers' worry that the meat may be refrigerator-preserved or even contaminated."

Thousands of Chinese internet users criticized the dog-eating festival on social networking sites, and called for the local Qianxi government to intervene.

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Topics: Animals • China • Odd

soundoff (144 Responses)
  1. alex

    if pigs, chickens, lambs, cows, were slaughtered in the "streets" where we all could see how "humanely" it's done, than maybe we could all have an well informed dialogue, but until then, we should all pay a visit to the slaughter house and see for ourselves what the truth is. because i have a feeling that it's a disgusting process, and not very humanely...

    September 23, 2011 at 9:37 pm | Reply
    • Liza

      THANK-YOU. You have such a good point. People refuse to see China's side.

      September 24, 2011 at 7:48 pm | Reply
  2. Jessica

    It is interesting to note those who criticise the values of the compassionate, assume we are hypocritical enough to eat meat while feeling sorry for cats and dogs.I myself am vegan so thankfully there is no dilema or compartmentalising my compassion into neat segments of companion animals or agricultural ones. By the way,for those labouring under the misconception that American abattoirs are more humane than the practice of skinning an animal alive, need to actually visit one. The only difference between Western country abattoirs and what happens on the streets of China, is that in one country the abuse occurs in full view while in another, it is behind closed doors. For this reason the meat & livestock industries invest millions each year to promote the notion of "humane"slaughter, enabling morons to continue living in the belief that their country is so much kinder to animals, while vilifing Eastern countries' practices. For a PG rated taste of what actually happens in a slaughterhouse, please treat yourselves to the youtube doco "If Slaughterhouses had Glass Walls".Wake up and taste the faeces in your sausages!

    September 24, 2011 at 5:06 am | Reply
    • Metin

      netoodsmosticated September 19, 2011 You seriously should ... it's so easy!! And I think they're pretty cheap ... mabye $20-25?

      February 11, 2012 at 11:08 pm | Reply
  3. Neehow!

    Cheer to dog lover, cheer to US mercy killings:
    Hiroshima, Agent Orange, carpet bombing, slavery, full combat fighting...........................................

    September 24, 2011 at 12:32 pm | Reply
  4. mike

    who really cares america kills dogs in every state

    September 24, 2011 at 3:52 pm | Reply
  5. mike

    now i see why republicans think democrats are idiots

    September 24, 2011 at 3:55 pm | Reply
  6. Seriously?

    People, why is eating dogs so wrong? I'm American, and have grown up with dogs all my life. I LOVE dogs!!! But most Americans think eating pigs, cows, chickens, etc are okay. But we still critizise the Chinese for eating dogs! It's the SAME thing!! What if the Chinese started complaining about America eating pigs? Or cows or chickens? We have to see China's side. It's part of their culture.

    September 24, 2011 at 7:41 pm | Reply
  7. LambEater

    Very good points made on this article. I'm glad to see people understand that different cultures view the eating and the slaughtering of animals according to their respective cultures and traditions. As a Chinese-American, I don't eat dog meat because I love dogs too much but can understand if the Chinese eat dog meat or if Americans eat pork and beef. However, these are all animals that quite large sized cultures will not eat or feel are dirty. For example, in the Muslim and Jewish world, pigs are considered dirty and are not eaten. In Hindu cultures, the cow is sacred and cannot be killed, let alone eaten. Some cultures/beliefs prohibit eating of any meat.

    So who's right?

    As for the argument that it's how animals are killed that make the difference, while I agree that animals should be killed in the least painful way possible, we are still killing them for food or other purposes. There is merit in open slaughtering of animals in front of the consumer as it can help reassure that the animal wasn't already a dead rotting carcass or killed in unsanitary conditions. Those who think that the US is any better at slaugtherhouses, should get more educated. Too many people have died from bacteria, samonella, e. coli, that's caused by poor conditions and lax regulation. We are also too far removed from how our food get to our table to truly appreciate the animals. A Filet-O-Fish looks (and tastes) nothing like fish!

    September 24, 2011 at 9:29 pm | Reply
  8. DownRedChina

    Chinese are the most evil group of people on earth. Do people know that Chinese people even eat human? In fact, they eat unborn babies – mostly babies girl. Do your research "Chinese eat babies".

    September 24, 2011 at 9:41 pm | Reply
    • unicorn

      um. I only heard what the U.S. military abuse of prisoners . Holy God bless the United States

      September 24, 2011 at 11:22 pm | Reply
    • That'snottrue:[

      What are you on?

      September 25, 2011 at 2:30 pm | Reply
      • john

        Maybe his neighbour?
        Remember that American woman who microwaved her own child? Aw, Americans, what can you expect?

        September 25, 2011 at 9:15 pm |
      • yang zi


        September 25, 2011 at 11:19 pm |
    • glynis

      Aghhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh. unhuman !!!!!!!!!!

      November 17, 2011 at 6:10 pm | Reply
  9. Jedi

    Chinese began to eat dog meat more than at least 2500 years ago. A famous book in that time stated that dog meat was one of six types of meat which was allow to eat. In fact, noble eat sheep and all common people eat dog meat as their daily meal. In Chinese culture, dog was an evil animal. They can guard a house, but no people treated them as pet and friend until western culture came in. It is a long time culture and it is longer than most western country's history. I wonder why people even blame it. I even heard that some Chinese consider turkey is somewhat holy and any one who eat turkey is devil.
    For my opinion, as a source of meat, dog meat has no difference with pork, beef and chicken. The ones they eat are specially fed and have a lot of meat, and they never eat pet dogs. If I have a small pet pig, should I blame you for eating pork?

    September 24, 2011 at 11:59 pm | Reply
    • unicorn

      yep I agree with you

      September 25, 2011 at 12:04 am | Reply
    • Jim

      Jedi take a look at the Dog in the picture The ones they eat are specially fed and have a lot of meat, and they never eat pet dogs. If I have a small pet pig, should I blame you for eating pork? I dont think so

      September 26, 2011 at 1:07 am | Reply
  10. Pig Killer

    Pigs are much smarter than dogs. But taste soooo good.

    September 25, 2011 at 2:08 am | Reply
  11. sapsxy

    hi-look Chinese people-if you people intend to progress "humanely" as well-try to abandon "dog and cat" eating and also stop serving "alive sea creatures half cut up"-I can understand in the past-food was scarce but today-it shouldnt be a issue ! I dont eat anything except fish and chicken,considered "lowest form of intelligent creatures".
    i know I know,I will get some comments regarding "eating poor old chicken" but..I would assume majority of meat eaters are chicken eaters! I dont understand why Chinese government can't ban outright totally consumption of dogs and cats in their country! For godshake,look into the eyes of that poor cat and dog ! :(

    September 25, 2011 at 8:47 am | Reply
    • john

      I see.
      hi-look American people. I am a Chinese vegertarian – if you people intend to progress "Humanely" as well- tr to abandon meat eating and also stop farm raising fish and chicken in such a brutal way. For godsake, have you ever been to a chicken farm? Not those in downtown LA, though.

      September 25, 2011 at 9:11 pm | Reply
  12. KRM1007

    Time for India to stop the cow ur**ne drinking festival as well. Can't let China steal the

    September 25, 2011 at 1:53 pm | Reply
  13. J-pecrt


    September 26, 2011 at 8:31 am | Reply
  14. Living in China

    I've been living in China for 3 years and can easily say that eating dogs is the least of their problems. The Chinese behave like barbarians. Any hint of civilization they may display has been copied from the West.

    September 26, 2011 at 9:35 am | Reply
    • Living in USA

      So why you said You love Chinese?

      September 26, 2011 at 8:15 pm | Reply
  15. Dog Lover

    Before i begin i would like to say that i am not american i am European!!! I have never being to China, however I would love to go. It is understandable that it is their culture and their tradition, however we most all evolve and grow spiritualy and moraly. I see a lot of comments how when your starving you would eat anything, well maybe!! The fact of the matter is that a dog would be the last thing in my mind. After all every single other civilization lived and survived without eating dog and we all went thru starvation. Therefore, i dont see how China couldn't do the same. Furthermore, the text says "The festival marks a local military victory during the Ming dynasty, in which dogs in Qianxi were killed so they would not bark and alert the enemy. " as I interpet this nowhere it says they were eaten due to starvation. In addition, I believe it was the moraly corrupt that started eaten dog in that province and blamed it to the war. Moreover, people say that it is a 2500 year tradition and that it is justifiable because of that! OK! Well in Europe dogs were used in war and we never ate them. In addtion, in my country we had a very old tradtion of Bullfighting, which was deemed cruel and unhumane. Immediatelly after we STOPPED, our oldest tradtion. To conclude, I believe that Chinese could rise up to the ocasion and get a litte bit of humanity in them and stop that cruelty towards our best friend. We have lived and been with dogs and their ancestor for about 200,000 years.

    September 27, 2011 at 3:50 pm | Reply
  16. Garrick

    This does not surprise me at all. In the name of culture all sorts of barbaric behaviour is condoned in China. Here in South Africa Chinese backed poachers are daily killing critically endangered rhinos in our game reserves,just so that they can supposedly have a better erection . Other Chinese have almost wiped out our coastal abalone shellfish, they are starting to poach our lion population because some big deal figure in China supposedly had a miraculous cure from some ailment after consuming some part of a lion. In neighbouring Mozambique they are have the local population killing sharks by the thousands for their fins, which are used for soup. This wholesale barbaric slaughter is evidently their culture!

    September 27, 2011 at 6:53 pm | Reply
    • Dog Lover

      I agree with you , they are a very morally deprived culture! I just think it is amazing how nobody or any association ever stops them. It is about time some one stops them!!!

      September 27, 2011 at 11:16 pm | Reply
  17. melkeon

    I'm glad they called it off!!

    November 25, 2011 at 12:51 pm | Reply
  18. 韩某某

    I always think I am stupid
    .But today I think I am bright because of you.
    亲~~Because after I read the article I know what you will say

    December 11, 2011 at 4:12 am | Reply
  19. wow

    So if a country had a tradition of consuming humans, it would be o.k.? Yes most here sound like morons. You never eat PETS...

    March 22, 2012 at 7:46 pm | Reply
  20. Mary

    Forgot to also mention their other so called aphrodisiac the rhino horn........they keep eating the stuff even though it has been proved to have about as much use as eating toenails eg none. And rhinos now are becoming extinct because of them. How can they kill our beautiful animals in such barbaric ways.

    March 23, 2012 at 1:18 pm | Reply
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    April 10, 2012 at 11:13 am | Reply
  22. redflag

    if you no longer eat beef, we might stop kill dogs

    April 14, 2012 at 12:12 pm | Reply
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    May 18, 2012 at 6:51 pm | Reply
  24. BettyWang

    I've seen enough dogs in cages in shelters and going hungry on the streets; some people treat them like any other animals- meals.
    I think it's more sympathetic to end an animal's suffering as a meal than let it live miserably until it's a rotting corpse on the side of a road.
    I am a dog-owner and thinking of my Susie as a hamburger is revolting to me. But I'm sure if I got to know a pig a little better, I wouldn't enjoy porkchops as much.

    July 2, 2012 at 7:41 pm | Reply
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  26. Ena

    I hate chinese people all my life for million reasons! I hate china.

    December 19, 2012 at 7:09 am | Reply
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