World Veterinary Congress 2017:Speak Out Against The Dog and Cat Meat Trade in South Korea

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Dear participants of the World Veterinary Congress:

We are reaching out to the participants of the World Veterinary Congress to help put an end to the dog meat trade in South Korea.  The WVC is being held in South Korea this year, a country which still farms and eats dogs. 2.5 million dogs are slaughtered each year and consumed.

We ask you to please watch the videos of South Korea’s dog meat industry:

The methods utilized in this unregulated industry are barbaric, and the conditions under which these animals are kept are horrendous.  It has been well-documented that the treatment of these dogs is unimaginably cruel and inhumane.  From birth to death they are kept in cramped cages raised off of the ground, so that their feet never touch the ground their entire lives.  They are fed food wastes in extremely unsanitary conditions.  Their treatment during transport to slaughter is horrific.  They are packed so tightly into cages like stuffed animals that many die from being crushed by the weight of the other dogs.  They must endure extreme heat and cold, and are given no water during the days-long trek, so that many die of dehydration. 

The slaughter methods themselves are nothing short of sadistic and inhumane.  They promote the misguided belief that the adrenaline release which occurs at death improves the quality of the meat, so that the dogs are purposefully tortured and made to experience extreme fear and suffering at slaughter.  This often takes the form of prolonged beatings while being hanged, and smaller dogs and cats are boiled often alive to make “tonics” which are purported to treat ailments such as rheumatism.

The health risks to humans are all too real.  By the time these dogs are slaughtered, they are so sick with untreated broken bones, infections and malnutrition, that anyone who has not themselves witnessed the documentaries of this practice has no idea that the meat that is going into their “health soup” has been harvested in the most disgusting and unsanitary fashion. 

As veterinarians and professionals in animal welfare, you are able to appreciate the negative impact that this practice has on our society.  This is not just an argument against an unjust and cruel practice.  It is not an argument against what people should and should not eat.  It is an argument against the treatment of fellow living animals.  It is an argument against the negative health impact that this has on us humans. 

This year the World Veterinary Congress is promoting the concept of “One Health, an emerging concept that encompasses the health of humans, animals and their environment across the globe”

The center of the Congress symbol shows a silhouette of a human surrounded by animals and clouds that … delivers a message that veterinarians co-exist with animals, with a theme of One Health, "The health of humans, animals and ecosystems are all interconnected."

We are asking you to help bring awareness and a solution to this problem.  As a medical professional you can make a difference with your support.

Thank you.


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