China's latest craze: dyeing pets to look like other wild animals
A dog is painted as a baby giant panda during the launch of a new pet park at Dahe Mincui Park on June 5, 2010 in Zhengzhou, Henan Province of China.
June 22nd, 2011
01:51 PM ET

China's latest craze: dyeing pets to look like other wild animals

By Emily Lodish, Global Post

They only look like baby pandas.

These little bundles of joy are actually chow chow dogs that have been dyed black-and-white to look like pandas.

Dyeing pets has been a trend in pet pampering for quite some time. At last summer's Pets Show Taipei, there was a fierce dog-dyeing competition. Check out photos.

But dyeing your pets to look like other wild animals is a more recent development.

The trend demonstrates how quickly and dramatically attitudes toward pets — particularly dogs — have changed in many parts of Asia.

Read: Can China censor its leading artists, Ai Weiwei?

In Taiwan, for example, just 10 years ago, dogs were still eaten in public restaurants and raised on farms for that purpose. Traditional Chinese medicine held that so-called "fragrant meat" from dogs could fortify one's health.

Now, eating dog is viewed by many as an embarrassing reminder of a poorer time.

With more money to spend, newly wealthy Chinese have embraced dog-owning culture with a vengeance. Dogs are brought into restaurants, fussed over in public, dressed up in ridiculous outfits and dyed to look like ferocious tigers.

Panda or chow chow? Tiger or retriever? You be the judge:

People take the dogs which were painted as baby giant pandas and tigers out during the launch of a new pet park at Dahe Mincui Park on June 5, 2010 in Zhengzhou, Henan Province of China.
A dog is painted as a baby giant panda during the launch of a new pet park at Dahe Mincui Park on June 5, 2010.

People take the dogs which were painted as baby giant pandas and tigers out during the launch of a new pet park at Dahe Mincui Park on June 5, 2010 in Zhengzhou, Henan Province of China.

For more pictures, visit Global Post.

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Topics: China • Culture

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soundoff (961 Responses)
  1. Hey now

    Hey, we all know the chinese are crazies, but atleast theyre not eating them ! Atleast the poor pups get to live rather than turning in puppy dumplings.

    June 23, 2011 at 2:48 am |
  2. Note

    double standards, double standards everywhere. How can some people profess to be so virtuous and yet be so hypocritical?

    PaulMc1981 is right, if you label dyeing pets' hair as animal cruelty, that's extreme. You should be on the other side of the extreme too, then. Be a vegetarian, and perhaps then people will take you more seriously.

    Docking your dogs' tails is a tradition passed on from times when you used your dogs to HUNT. How many people actually hunt on a regular basis? Or at all?

    The thing is, these forms of animal cruelty still exist even though you no longer have practical use for them (except for traditions' sake). Same thing on the other side of the planet, some of their traditions changed, and others are still lingering.

    To me, this is weird, it's like loving your dog pet because it looks like a panda. Hmm? But I wouldn't start pointing fingers.

    June 23, 2011 at 2:59 am |
  3. marko

    Well at least they have moved from eating >>> to dying >>>> next I hope loving.........

    June 23, 2011 at 3:24 am |
  4. shar

    Was funnier when I saw it last year. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1284646/Meet-Tiger-Dog-Chinese-owners-dye-pets-look-like-wild-animals.html

    June 23, 2011 at 3:33 am |
  5. Frank Robinson

    This is better than eating your own dog!

    June 23, 2011 at 3:33 am |
    • Nate

      That tiger striped Golden Retrieve looks pretty happy to me. If he's anything like mine then he was just happy for the human attention.

      June 23, 2011 at 5:35 am |
  6. Diane

    Hey..It's unfair. Doesn't such kind of thing happen in US? Why western countries' mass media always try to humiliate China by all the means in all aspects?

    June 23, 2011 at 3:47 am |
    • A Chinese

      Because they need someone to hate, although those people have absolutely nothing to do with their own problems. They like to feel superior although I bet majority of the people who wrote those hateful comments have no college education, working at low paid jobs that they hate.

      June 23, 2011 at 4:43 am |
  7. Alicia

    I think this should be illegal.

    June 23, 2011 at 4:13 am |
  8. kar

    Alternatively, we could all just not dye pets in the first place and accept them for what they are. Neither approach can really be considered worse thab the other from tbe perspective of the pet.

    June 23, 2011 at 4:19 am |
  9. kirsten

    can't you read??? this is NOT animal friendly dye.. not that I would care, fur dying is useless "torture" of animals... so when people get upset it's understandable.

    June 23, 2011 at 4:26 am |
    • A Chinese

      Ever dyed your hair or your kids hair/face painting? Or tatoo? Ear piercing? Ever cropped the tails or your dogs or clipped their ears? Feeling better now?

      June 23, 2011 at 4:46 am |
      • Dude

        No one cares about dyed animals, when are we going to start seeing naked Chinese girls? What wrong with that society? Millions and millions of chicks and none of them are allowed to get naked? Right up there with the Middle East, a real shame...

        June 24, 2011 at 12:53 am |
  10. Mr. M

    What about the animal skin? Wont this ink casue any rashes? I would like to know what PETA would like to say about this in the US.
    But in the other side is China we are speaking about. What abut shark fin fishing? The citizens do not have civil rights so why would animals at all, as long as there is money they will sell their own mother.
    It goes all the way to make the economy grow for the party to look good, they will kill their own forest and seas, poison the water and if some one complains hey "Here is your ticket to work/death camp, oh and your family has just been signed in into the organ farm. Thank you bvery much"

    June 23, 2011 at 4:46 am |
  11. Mr Wu

    So sorry for my langwidge bat chinese no eat dog for hundred year. west should not judge.

    June 23, 2011 at 5:15 am |
  12. Nate

    I don't even need to read the comments to know that there are probably a bunch of know-it-all, uptight activists lecturing about how this is wrong, and pretending that they know for a fact the dye is harmful.

    June 23, 2011 at 5:30 am |
  13. dave

    china has become a threat to the white people and so no matter that the Chinese do they will be vilified. The chinese should realized they don't need the West's approval to be validated...because they will never get it no matter what they do. The only way chinese will get any sympathy is if they become as powerless as the pets...white people like pets more than chinese people because pets are not threatening but chinese are.

    June 23, 2011 at 6:12 am |
    • ron diberto

      You think the chinese are a threat to the "white people"?? Get a clue dude. The white race has done nothing but exterminate races since its existance. The white race has been responsible for the extermination of the indian tribe that existed on Jamaca before they put thier "slaves" there. Which is another race we tried to kill out. Should i also mention the native americans. we made it look like we came in peace. In the end the White race killed millions of them over a course of a few years. The white race deserves to be taken out because of ignorant, self centered, egotistical, white niggers like you. Be a real member of the White Race and shut the f**k up.

      June 23, 2011 at 8:10 am |
      • hippo

        awesome. thats all i have to say. 🙂

        June 24, 2011 at 10:45 am |
  14. chechen_95

    nice work

    June 23, 2011 at 6:15 am |
  15. CL

    Not an activist at all, but just thought dogs are cuter the way they are. It's a pet park, not a safari, so what's the point of looking like wild animals...go figure.

    June 23, 2011 at 6:18 am |
    • dave

      as long as you are not imposing your western sensibilities to the chinese...why must all people's behavior in this planet be validated against the white man's standards and approval?
      however if this craze had came out of a western country say the UK and started by some cool celebrities...i am sure it might even catch on...or at the very least not receive such bad press...
      The chinese people need to remember that the west care much more about pets than people...and by people i mean chinese people.

      June 23, 2011 at 6:43 am |
      • White Power

        Because GOD is White and he created the white man in his image!

        June 23, 2011 at 6:55 pm |
    • Palito

      @White Power
      "Because GOD is White and he created the white man in his image!"

      Have you seen God? I did and last time I saw He was transparent.

      September 7, 2011 at 8:55 am |
  16. nick

    I find it pretty funny 😀 at least, much more better than nasty practice of eating poor chow chows, and even better than wide-spread (mostly in the US and Europe) practice of tail-cutting or dog fighting; but why just dogs – it's just a joke, compared to the corrida, isn't it?

    June 23, 2011 at 6:26 am |
  17. Katie

    Pathetic... I guess when they eat their family pet it will appear more like exotic meat...

    June 23, 2011 at 6:35 am |
  18. Marianne

    Poor dogs, yes, But actually, poor Chinese. They have given up all their freedoms and rights in exchange for the shallowest of lives. They'd rather have an iPhone or some Levi's jeans than the freedom to question their government or vote or practice the religion they choose. They have been neutered and groomed and dyed just like their dogs, and they think they are happy.

    June 23, 2011 at 7:24 am |
    • Helen

      You sound really ignorant – pretty much just repeating what you hear from CNN....next time people spoon-feed you facts...you should really ask questions.

      June 23, 2011 at 4:54 pm |
  19. brad

    wow, some of the comments are ignorant, nature isnt all beauty, many predators play with their prey and dolphins kill for the fun of it, just 2 examples off the top of my head there are many more though

    June 23, 2011 at 7:34 am |
  20. ron diberto

    it's a dog. So what if you dye its hair. It does not hurt them. they don't care. They are DOGS. People sit there and argue this all you want too. But which would you rather have, China making thier dogs look like other animals or having thier dog look like a sidewalk all you can eat. If they are creating walking artwork on living creatures without eating them. I give them huge props for such a huge leap forward.

    June 23, 2011 at 8:02 am |
  21. Mendra

    This is too stupid for words. What a waste of money.

    June 23, 2011 at 8:27 am |
  22. Karmah

    More animal abuse from China.

    June 23, 2011 at 8:30 am |
    • dave

      more people abuse from US...kill all the non-white people but make sure there is no collateral damage vis-a-vis the pets

      June 23, 2011 at 3:25 pm |
    • Xavier

      it's "ok" if Americans breed dogs to fight,
      but damn those Chinese if they dye their dogs!

      God Bless America and no where else!

      June 23, 2011 at 6:52 pm |
  23. silkgeisha

    Stop Animal Abuse of all kind – everywhere in the world. Animal abuse in USA is especially not excusable – we know better!

    June 23, 2011 at 8:45 am |
  24. Chris

    I want to dye my dog purple. She does not have to hide from predators, and I'm not even sure she can see purple, so I'm having a hard time understanding how that's "cruel".

    June 23, 2011 at 8:54 am |
  25. Steven

    That is mean for dogs>_< TAT Stupid people!=.=|||

    June 23, 2011 at 9:42 am |
  26. Alessandro

    Chinese people has a serious problem.

    June 23, 2011 at 11:03 am |
  27. Alessandro

    Chinese people shall stop top treat pets as toys

    June 23, 2011 at 11:04 am |
    • dave

      white people like to treat chinese as pets so they can tell them exactly what and what not to do....

      June 23, 2011 at 3:19 pm |
      • corina

        Towards your reply to my comment... I wasn't trying to have a mature response, just stated how I thought that little boy was a weirdo just like you.

        June 23, 2011 at 6:35 pm |
  28. Eduardo

    Ok first of all almost this is not animal abuse, it doesn’t even compare to animal abuse. I think its art and it’s very beautiful. Second of all almost everyone who commented had so many grammar errors you all spell like retarded dyslexics. Learn to spell because I am 12 and I don’t even live in the U.S I live in the Caribbean and I go to a Dutch school. And I doubt that someone would go to an amateur to dye their pets. It’s probably done by professionals who know what they’re doing and know how to cause the dog less pain possible. You Americans just got dissed.

    June 23, 2011 at 11:13 am |
    • corina

      Eduardo, nobody cares that you're from the Caribbean or that you go to Dutch school. You seem like a weirdo who probably wacks off to CNN, especially at your age. That's even if you've hit puberty yet.

      June 23, 2011 at 1:14 pm |
      • dave

        i think the 12 yo sounds way more mature than you

        June 23, 2011 at 3:21 pm |
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