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March 15, 2018

Olympic gold medalist Meagan Duhamel joins Humane Society International/Canada in calling for an end to inherently cruel dog meat trade

More than 80 dogs rescued by HSI from a South Korean dog meat farm to recuperate at Montreal emergency shelter

Humane Society International/Canada

    Canadian Olympian Meagan Duhamel with her rescued dog, Moo-Tae. Graham Hughes

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MONTREAL—Olympic gold medalist Meagan Duhamel, joined by representatives from Humane Society International, greeted dozens of dogs rescued this week from a dog meat farm in Siheung-si, South Korea, at an HSI temporary shelter in Montreal, where they are currently receiving urgently needed care.

Rebecca Aldworth, executive director for HSI/Canada, said: “I am so pleased that HSI was able to rescue these desperate dogs from the horrific dog meat trade. At the farm, multiple dogs were crammed together in small wire cages, while others were chained to stakes in the ground. They had little protection from the freezing temperatures, and they had never received proper food or water or veterinary care. Many of the dogs were emaciated and had open sores and skin infections. But because of our amazing supporters, these dogs now have a second chance and a new life in Canada.”

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Olympic medalist Meagan Duhamel, whose dog Moo-tae was rescued from a South Korean dog meat farm, said: “Millions of dogs are subjected to unspeakable deprivation and cruelty on intensive farms and brutally slaughtered every year for the South Korean dog meat trade. I am happy to join with Humane Society International and so many courageous South Korean advocates who are working to expose the plight of these dogs and bring an end to the gruesome trade.”

HSI senior policy manager in South Korea, Borami Seo stated, “Make no mistake, South Korean advocates are leading the campaign to end the dog meat trade in my country. The growing pet culture in South Korea, and the clear interest of many farmers to transition out of this industry, is a strong indication that the dog meat trade’s days are numbered. It is time my government acted to phase out this cruel industry for good by transitioning farmers to more humane industries.”

FACTS:

  • South Korea is the only country where dogs are intensively farmed for human consumption. An estimated 2.5 million dogs a year are raised on an estimated 17,000 dog farms each year in South Korea.
  • The life of a dog on a dog meat farm is miserable. They are crammed in small, filthy cages exposed to the elements, with no environmental enrichment and very little food or care offered during their lifetime.
  • Most people in South Korea don’t regularly eat dog meat. In fact, opposition to eating dog is growing among Korean citizens.
  • While some very elderly dog farmers with whom HSI works choose to retire, others work with HSI to devise a business plan to transition into alternative, humane livelihoods such as water delivery or blueberry farming.
  • An estimated 30 million dogs are brutally killed and eaten each year in parts of Asia. Hong Kong, the Philippines, Taiwan, Thailand and Singapore have laws in place prohibiting the trade, on grounds of both animal welfare and human health/disease control.

To date, HSI has closed 11 dog meat farms and rescued about 1300 dogs from horrible fate in the dog meat trade.

This rescue is an enormous undertaking and would not have been possible without the incredibly generous support of the Eric S. Margolis Family Foundation. We also thank Friends of HSI, Sharp Transportation, supporter Barbara Elliott and C.E.S. Inc., our incredible shelter staff and volunteers, and Mondou for supplying specialized dog food.

For interview requests, please call or email media contact below. To download high-resolution photos, click here; then click “create account” at the top of the page.

Media Contact: Christopher Paré – office: 514 395-2914 x 206 / cell: 438 402-0643, email:cpare@hsi.org

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