Our founder Du Yufeng decided she wasn't going to go to Yulin this year but at the last minute she had to see for herself whether anything would change after dogs were not listed as livestock in the new National Catalogue of Livestock and Poultry but, it was business as usual for the butchers.
In the afternoon of June 20th, volunteers from Jiangsu met with Du to discuss what to do. Du's main purpose for visiting Yulin, and Nanning, was to meet with the governments and submit a letter of complaint.
Early in the mornings the slaughtering of dogs is happening and their meat sold. It is definitely business as usual.
Du is at a stall right now where they slaughter dogs. She is trying to negotiate with the butcher to buy some of them. The butchers know Du and like to upset her. Some wouldn't let her take any of their dogs - or cats because there were cats there to be killed too.
2 of the black dogs at the butcher's are the ones you saw yesterday in the cage on the back of a motorcycle.
Your donation will help to free some dogs, medicate and feed them then fly them back to Guangyuan.
Please donate whatever you an, however small. It will help to save lives. Thank you.
Cats and their meat could be slaughtered too....
Du has negotiated with the butcher to buy 16 dogs including the black ones on the back of the motorcycle yesterday. They are being weighed to determine how much the butcher wants for their lives. As you can see, some of the dogs have collars on them. Please keep donating what you can. Apart from the cost to buy the dogs, it is the cost of the treatment they will need and the enormous cost of the transport to get them 1500km back to Guangyuan. Thank you for your generosity.
The 16 dogs rescued were joined by one more, a disabled dog, making 17 lives saved from slaughter.
Our founder Du Yufeng had to stand and watch the butchers as they took the dogs out one by one with iron clamps: the 'normal' way that they handle 'meat dogs'. Some had collars on them, clearly stolen pets or guard dogs.
After being weighed one by one they were put into smaller cages to be transported via taxi to a waiting lorry that Du had to hire along with the driver. Flying the dogs home was not an option.
Guangyuan is 1500km away so it is more than a 24 hour drive back to our shelter.
Driving through the night, they have stopped regularly to give the dogs rest, food and water before they carried on.
They are still on the road.
We can not thank you all enough for your donations and we hate to ask for more but the rescue does not stop when the dogs are handed over to us.
We still need to pay the driver for the hire of the lorry and we also need to give these dogs the medication and food they need to recover from their ordeal when we are back in Guangyuan.
NO dog deserves the disregard for their life and the torture they have to go through for someone's meal.
These 17 dogs will join the other survivors back at our shelter and hopefully in time they will find their forever homes.
Please donate what you can, we really do appreciate it.
Thank you 🐾
During the 1500 km drive from Yulin back to Guangyuan, Du and the driver of the lorry she hired stopped several times to check on the dogs and to give them water. Most of the dogs took the water gladly, if a little timidly but a couple of the dogs were so scared when the driver went to pull their cages away from the others so that Du could get in to give them all water, that they cried hysterically (you can hear them on the video).
Some of these rescued dogs are PUPPIES and one is a mother who has recently given birth, but those puppies are not hers.....
We can't begin to know what went through their minds as they saw dogs tortured and butchered in front of them. We only know what we think of that and their body language shows just how scared out of their wits that they were; and some still are. One of the dogs that Du thought was disabled has in fact got a nasty wound on it's back leg. That will be treated when they are back at the shelter.
The driver of the lorry meant them no harm. He is a dog lover himself and helped Du to give the dogs some ham sausage on the road to give their hungry bellies something until they arrive at the shelter. But of course the dogs don't know whether he is friend or enemy.
Thank you to you all so much for donating your hard earned money to help us with these dogs. We know it is an uncertain time and some of you or your family may even have lost your jobs yet you still find it in your hearts to spare a few dollars to help our furry friends.
Thank you! Xièxiè! 谢谢!
After over 24 hours on the road including stops to check the dogs were ok, our founder Du Yufeng and the driver and lorry she hired finally reached our shelter in Guangyuan.
The dogs were taken to a room to quarantine away from the other dogs and assess them. They were given food and water with supplements to help nourish them and to aide their digestion. The little white dog with the infected leg was then treated and his wounds cleaned.
Du has hardly had any sleep since she left for Yulin but the dogs are and always have been her priority. We are advising her to look after herself as well.
Over the next few days the dogs will be assessed. Lots are really skinny. Some are happy and waggy tailed like the black labrador, clearly once a pet who someone paid a lot of money for. There are also two German Shepherds, what looks like a Staffordshire/Pit Bull Terrier who has recently given birth and a Shar Pei cross. All expensive breeds.
If you can help us to pay for their treatment and food and supplements please donate. We would all appreciate it.
Thank you for your continued support.
The dogs have all been vaccinated and de wormed and de flead.
The white dog with the wounded leg has turned out to be quite sick. He's been having regular trips to the pet hospital where Doctor Li has been giving him fluids and other medicines.
Today, one of our Golden Retrievers, Nian Zong donated his blood to help the little dog. It's going to be a good few days until we know if he will be strong enough to pull through completely but we won't give up on him.
Most of the other dogs are doing ok. A couple have Canine Distemper but they are being treated. Some of the others are malnourished. All have been wormed and de-flead.
Thank you for your continued donations. Vet bills are high at the best of times so you are helping to pay those so that we can continue to treat the sick.
The last few weeks since we rescued the dogs from Yulin have been filled with tending to these sick fur children, day and night. Canine Distemper, malnutrition, fleas, internal parasites have all needed to be treated.
The internal parasites especially are having such an effect on some of the dogs that we have had to send faecal samples to a laboratory to try and find a treatment that some of the dogs can tolerate so that they can begin gaining weight and strength.
There are various injuries. The worst are the white dog's legs and a German Shepherd's neck where it looks like a collar or chain has been on so tight that it has ripped the skin away.
We thank you so much for your support in helping these dogs. Now, we need your help again so that we can pay the vet and laboratory.
A pet hospital in Chengdu who we have partnered with previously have sent us medicines and vaccines but we still need to pay those too.
Rescuing is the easy part, the weeks and sometimes months of aftercare are the hardest
Donations help to save lives so we appreciate greatly whatever you can spare, however small you think it might be.
The dogs rescued with Canine Distemper are getting better except for one, a Belgian Malinois, who has not been gaining weight. We are taking him to the pet hospital for tests.
The Malinois and another dog,both rescued from Yulin Dog Meat Festival this year have been back at the vets. The Malinois, named Shan Ting, has been unable to gain weight and is anaemic. He has been one of the strong, brave ones who were very ill with Canine Distemper. You can see the ticks he is left with from that as the nurse inserts the needle. Hopefully now he is at a turning point and can begin to get well enough to hopefully be adopted in the future.
Vets bills are very expensive. We cannot pay them without your donations
Our founder Du Yufeng has not been to Yulin Dog Meat Festival this year on doctor's orders after she and other activists were attacked by dog meat traffickers at the end of May and Du was hospitalised. See here for more.
It is the first time that Du has missed going to Yulin since her initial visit in 2013 but she is still being reported about around the world and although there are some Chinese activists who don't support the way she does things (they do not like that she talks to the media, they think she wants fame) she will continue to give interviews to show the world what is happening.
We have been contacted by a few reporters over the last couple of weeks. Some of them, reporters for Apple Daily in Hong Kong, visited us and were shown around the shelter, meeting some of the furry residents. Ba Tong, an Old English Sheepdog at our shelter, showed the reporters around with a camera strapped to his back. Ba Tong was abandoned in 2010. His owner told us that he had been ill for 7 months and could no longer keep him so he has lived at our shelter ever since.
As well as the beautiful girls from the Apple Daily uplifting her spirits, your many messages of support and get well wishes have made Du smile and want to carry on the fight so thank you!
Our hearts are black because despite all ours and other Chinese activists efforts and despite all of the help from our supporters overseas, the 'Lychee Dog Meat Festival' in Yulin, Guangxi will still take place. The butchers and dog meat eaters will attend in force.
Our founder, Du Yufeng will soon travel to Yulin, Guangxi for the 6th year to protest and document the killing.
Dogs like this one and countless others will be brutally tortured, killed and made in to hotpot for the dog meat eaters to gorge on.
Du will be taking a letter to Mr Huang Haikun, Secretary of Yulin Municipal Committee of the Guangxi Autonomous Region to ask him to ban the dog meat eating and implement tougher laws and sentences for people involved in this despicable trade.
A snapshot of the letter is below. You can read the letter in full by downloading the file.
20th June- morning
The plane to Nanning was delayed for nearly an hour but once it had reached it's destination, Du checked in to her hotel and later that day she met up with some activist friends to make a plan of what they would document in Yulin.
21st June, morning-
Du and her friends hired a car and driver to take them the 200+km in to Yulin.
When they arrived in Yulin, they made their way to the government buildings to present Party Secretary Mr Huang Haikun a letter asking him to ban dog and cat eating and killing and implement tougher sentences for perpetrators.
They also reported the butchers in Tongkou Market in Yulin City for trafficking (dogs and cats) from illegal sources, suspected illegal criminal income of dogs and cats, slaughtering dogs and cats and other household pets and are suspected of illegal and criminal activities by selling stolen goods which is contrary to the conscience of humanity.
21st June - afternoon
After handing in the letters and showing posters and booklets to the government official representative. Du and her friends staged a peaceful demonstration outside the government offices. They held posters telling people to call a hotline if they saw trucks of dogs and cats being transported from one province border to another because it is illegal to transport them without a licence. The posters also asked people not to eat cat and dog. Educating and education are the only ways that we will stop people from eating companion animals. Showing all the different ways in which dogs and cats are good for our health and that dogs help humans in time of need may help some people to connect to the dogs and cats and not just see them as food. Until our government decides to pass animal protection laws and ban dog and cat eating, education is the only way to stop it.
After the protest, they decided to drive in to the dog slaughterhouses and dog meat eating areas. Du visited the Dongkou and Southbridge Markets. Both were busy with people queueing to buy dog meat. There were many live dogs in the markets waiting to be slaughtered.
Below- Tongkou Market
Below - Southbridge Market
22nd June- all day
Our founder, Du Yufeng and her activist friends have visited the farmer's market in Nanning. Du documented the butcher stalls and slaughterhouses where live dogs were killed in front of each other. Among the dogs were mother dogs, some with puppies, others pregnant.
Cages of cats were also there in the market at Nanning. Du found a premature kitten that had fallen through one of the cages when a mother cat had given birth. Later that day when Du and friends returned, the mother cat had gone. Killed for stupid human's greed Du took the kitten and gave it a Buddhist burial in a green, peaceful place away from the horrors of killing.
Another year of visiting Guangxi, another year of tears and heartbreak. Nothing has changed, the killing is still happening.
If China does not legislate for a companion animal law and ban the dog and cat meat eating, we will never be able to save all the dogs and cats, the faithful friends who will be brutally slaughtered 😭💔
Du pleaded with the butcher to release the mother dog giving birth but he said no. Later that day when Du and friends returned, the mother dog had gone. Killed for stupid human's greed.
22nd June - evening
Du and her friends returned to the slaughterhouse on the way back to their hotel on the off chance that the butcher would let them have some dogs this time. There was a dead dog there, so Du chanted a Buddhist blessing to help the dog reach enlightenment.
In the slaughterhouse, Du filmed the machines used to remove the hair from dogs, many of them still alive when they are placed in it. There was also a boiling tank. Torture knows no bounds in the dog meat trade.
Finally after much negotiation, there was VICTORY!! Du managed to save 6 large dogs!
Once the butcher had agreed to sell the dogs to Du and they had been weighed to determine the price that Du would pay, they were placed in larger cages and then placed in to the car.
Du took the dogs to Nanning Airport and began the shipping procedures. They will stay there and will be looked after by staff in the freight area while they wait to fly back to Guangyuan with Du on 25th June.
Most Chinese animal rights groups had decided on a boycott of Yulin, refusing to go there to buy dogs. Du said that she would only be going to Yulin to protest and hand in the letter and report to the party secretary but when faced with dogs, looking at her with desperate pleas, she could not leave them there to be tortured. While she couldn't save the mother dog earlier, one of the dogs she did rescue is heavily pregnant. That dog will now give birth while she and her puppies are safe and loved. Their story could have been very different.
We understand that buying dogs is not the answer, that it fuels the fire but until the Chinese government implements a law to protect animals from this heartless trade of dogs and cats for their meat, we will try our best to save as many as we can.
Du expects others to condemn the way she has rescued these dogs but, in her words, she says "Do what you have to; walk your own path no matter what others say".
6 dogs does not sound like a lot but for these dogs it means everything. Your donations helped to buy these dogs their lives. Their rehabilitation starts when they arrive at our shelter. They have cuts and bruises and some are depressed, unable to look at Du properly. Who can blame them after what they have seen?
Your support has been vital in saving lives. It will also help to keep their nightmares at bay. Thank you❤
25th June - evening
This evening Du will fly with the 6 rescued dogs back to Chengdu airport and then on to Guangyuan. The dogs will be checked over and given necessary vaccinations and medicines to help heal their broken bodies and spirits. The dogs are in the flight crates ready to take off. Thank you to all of you who donated and shared our posts.
The rescue of the dogs is the 'easy' part. The long term rehabilitation to help rid the dogs of their nightmares will begin tonight.
25th June - night
Du's flight landed safely in Chengdu and thanks goes to two of our volunteers who drove nearly 4 hours from Guangyuan to help Du unload the crates from the airport freight terminal. One of them made sure each dog had a drink and cleaned the crates while the other gave each dog a short walk to stretch their legs. Then it was back in to their clean crates and the journey back to Guangyuan. Du will not put these dogs in the main shelter yet, they will be kept in the apartment block where she lives and where she can look out for them, administer needed medicines and vaccines and so that she can reassure them.
Du and our volunteers reached the apartment block in the early hours. The dogs were let out of their flight crates, given a meal and water and left to get used to there surroundings.
As the sun rose, Du and another of our volunteers Xin He along with our bank manager friend and volunteer
Mr Wang began to treat each dog in turn. All are full of fleas and ticks. They all had cuts and small wounds which were cleaned and treated with antiseptic solution. They were also vaccinated.
The pregnant dog is too scared, she has not left her flight crate so Du and volunteers are leaving her alone until she realises that she is safe and comes out of the cage on her own.
The German Shepherd had a collar on. Obviously someone's stolen pet. So many times we have heard dog meat butchers say that dogs are not stolen pets. What a lie!
Now safe, these dogs will need to be rehabilitated. Once settled in they will also be neutered. You have helped a lot by donating to help these dogs but please could we ask if you can help once more by donating to help with these costs? Your support has been amazing and we thank you very much!
The pregnant dog, rescued during the Yulin Dog Meat Festival has not been eating much and has been vomiting and passing bloody stools. Du has named her Bai Niu. She has also been passing a bloody discharge, the after effects of a miscarriage so somewhere on her journey to Yulin, squashed in a chicken cage, her poor body aborted a new life/lives in her.
Another of the rescued dogs, now named Mao Niu has also been vomiting and passing bloody stools so Du took them to the pet hospital for tests. The results showed they are suffering from viral gastroenteritis. They are being given rehydration and electrolye balance medication. A surprise pregnancy was confirmed for Mao Niu! How lucky will all these puppies be when they are born?! They would have been killed and eaten if we hadn't rescued their moms!
The good news is that all of the rescued dogs have tested negative for Canine Distemper and Parvovirus.
Their rehabilitation is thanks to you. Your donations buy essential medicines and pay vet bills so it is greatly appreciated at this time.
Unfortunately not long after telling you that none of the dogs had Canine Distemper or Canine Parvo Virus the dogs began to show signs and eventually tested positive for Canine Distemper Virus. They will continue to be cared for and treated to help them overcome this hurdle.
Our founder, Du Yufeng, had decided not to visit Yulin, Guangxi this year. She had made the decision to boycott Yulin. One of our partners, Andreas Morlok of ProWal in Germany told us that he was going to Yulin to document the atrocities for his own group. Du has decided to join him. She will stand by her decision not to buy any dogs, instead she will document whether the dog meat sales at certain restaurants will be banned. News stories overseas have stated that there would be a ban on dog meat in Yulin for 1 week from 15th June - 22nd June. Du and Andreas will see if this is upheld.
Seeing dogs brutally killed and hearing their screams of pain and fright has stayed with Du throughout the 5 years she has been to Yulin Dog Meat Festival. She still has nightmares about it. For nearly 10 consecutive years,she and our team have destroyed the dog slaughter houses and will keep fighting until China has no dog trade or festival!
Du will fly to Nanning to meet Andreas on Friday 16th June. Please wish her a safe journey.
A friend of Andreas will meet them later.
The night before Du flew to Nanning, she stayed in a hotel in Chengdu with one of our dogs, Li Ming, who will be flying to her new home in the UK next week. The next morning, Du said goodbye to Li Ming and left her with one of our transport company colleagues at Chengdu Shuangliu International Airport. She then checked in herself and waited for her flight to Nanning.
16th June 2017-
When Du arrived at Nanning Wuxu International Airport, Andreas was waiting to meet her.
Also joining Du is Andreas' friend, Sebastian, who is a friend of Marc Ching's. Du teamed with Marc last year in Yulin and boarded some of his rescued dogs at our shelter.
Once Du & Andreas met Sebastian at Nanning airport, they visited a farmer's market on Wuyi Road in Nanning. This market sold dogs and cats. For their meat. One trader told Du that he would kill and butcher any dog the buyer chose and that he sold the meat for 16 Yuan per catty (approx half a kilo).
On another stall, terrified cats were crammed into tiny cages. Injured and dead cats were in the cages with the live ones. What was most disturbing was when Du asked a little girl, who was with the owner of one cat stall, if she was afraid (because of all the killing and butchering). The little girl told Du that no, she was not afraid and that the cats were there to be sold and killed to be eaten. Knowing that this child was so desensitised to the torture and killing of the cats upset Du. Children are supposed to be the future but this little girl will likely grow up seeing animals as things and not sentient beings.
Later today, Du will accompany Andreas and Sebastian in to Yulin.
Trucks are making their way to Yulin with cage after cage loaded with dogs.
Dogs are being killed and butchered, Business as usual.
17 June 2017-
Today, Du, Andreas and Sebastian went in to Yulin to document things. Unfortunately Du didn't get any footage because, literally 2 minutes after stepping foot in Nanqiao Market, 8-10 men surrounded them and followed them for the next 4 hours! We know from previous years how intimidating and aggressive these dog meat supporters are towards Du so we are glad that Andreas and Sebastian were there to protect her but even they decided the situation was too dangerous and so they left the area and went back to Nanning. They were also followed in the car on the way back to Nanning and the driver that Andreas & Sebastian had hired, called Kobe, did great work by driving and dodging the people who were following them. Thank you Kobe!
Du went back to her hotel room and spent a restless night before finally falling asleep ready for tomorrow.
Today, Du, Andreas & Sebastian went to a slaughterhouse near Yulin where live dogs are shipped to market stalls in Yulin or they are killed at the slaughterhouse and the meat transported in to Yulin. Thousands of dogs from all over China will likely pass through this place of horror, not only for the Summer Solstice festival but every day year round because Yulin kills and sells dogs and their meat 365 days a year. When they are brought here, the dogs that are still alive after their, sometimes days long, journey are given meagre food and water until it is time for their killing. The ones that are dead on arrival are sometimes chopped up to feed the live ones. Sick dogs are in abundance. Rabid dogs are common. Dog meat eaters do not care about the state of the dog or meat as long as their bellies are filled.
After visiting the slaughterhouse, the trio went to Dongzhan Market where more live dogs were awaiting their fate. There were butchered dogs hanging and for sale in full view of live dogs. Chickens were also being offered for sale. The hygiene while killing and butchering animals is non existant and this goes against the food safety laws of food in China. Officials turn a blind eye to all of this, making our fight all the more harder.
Today, on the day of the Summer Solstice, when the festival officially begins, we went to the Yulin Food and Drug Administration to talk about the 'festival' and the big slaughterhouse at Yulin intersection. We reported to the officials but they did not answer our questions.
Later, Du and Andreas rescued 13 cats. At Dongba market and the surrounding farmer's market, they witnessed the brutal killings of companion animals! On the day of the festival they rescued 13 cats from slaughter. Most of them are very weak, bodies are full of hurt, they are skinny, dirty and smelly from being squashed intp chicken cages for so long. The terrible scenes make people grieve.
The cats were flown from Nanning to Chengdu and then taken to our shelter in Guangyuan where they were left to settle in for the night and explore their new surroundings. A lucky escape for these cats!
For now, you can help these new arrivals by donating towards their rehabilitation. Once they are healthy, they will be looking for a forever home. If you can offer one of these cats a home in the future, please contact us.
22 June 2017-
Andreas and Du flew from Nanning back to Chengdu and then travelled on to Guangyuan. Andreas' ProWal supporters had raised donations especially for us to help the dogs and cats at our shelter. We are extremely grateful for their friendship and partnership and warmly welcome the items that Andreas bought for the shelter with those donations. Among the items were sacks and sacks of food, meat, bones, vegetables, food bowls for the rescued cats, scratch posts, medicines and a combined washing machine and dryer! The washer/dryer will make things much easier for the workers who wash the animals's bedding by hand. The beds are hung out to dry, often not drying in time for the bedtime so we cannot thank you all enough for your donations that bought this and all the other items!
The cats rescued by us and ProWal at Yulin this year are settling in well. They are beginning to be less timid but some, understandably, still show fear aggression. The vets are cleaning eye, ear and limb wounds daily. The cats are very skinny so are being given small meals often to build up their strength.
One little kitten's condition has upset us all. When cats (and dogs) are stolen for the cat and dog meat trade, the traders stuff them into wire chicken cages. So many of them are squashed in to these cages that often they die from suffocation or like in this kitten's case, their limbs and tails are broken or squashed so severely that they end up deformed.
You can help towards the rehabilitation treatment costs for these poor cats by donating.
Thank you for your continued support for our animals in China.
12 of the cats we, and our German partner Andreas Morlok of ProWal, rescued on our trip to Yulin this year are doing well. They are putting weight on and their physical scars are healing. Most of them are still scared of human contact, which is very understandable given what they saw and heard but we hope they will begin to trust us in time.
The kitten whose paw was deformed from being squashed in a chicken cage sadly died.
Cats are forgotten at Yulin 'Dog' Meat Festival but the Cat Meat Trade is as bad as the Dog Meat Trade and cats are sentient beings too. They also deserve love and a happy ever after home.
Thank you for helping us to help them.
Our visit to Yulin this year, as in previous years, requires your help.
Animals rescued from the dog or cat meat trade are usually very sick with illness and disease and are severely dehydrated.
Please help us to help them by donating to rescue animals and then treat them with essential medical treatments.
Thank you for your support.
We are leaving to go to Yulin tomorrow morning and that requires lots of planning and organising and making room for sick dogs, who will be rescued from the Yulin Dog Meat Lychee Festival. Dogs who are rescued by us during the year are taken to the highrise block where Du lives and where our old shelter used to be situated. Being in the highrise means Du can nurse sick dogs back to health easily. Among the dogs well enough to be moved to the new shelter base are Tiě Dàn, the black Labrador left tied to the stair rails of Du's house, and Alaska the Alaskan Malamute who was found very sick under a bridge next to the river. We have a great relationship with our local Guangyuan government who help us when we close down slaughterhouses and restaurants serving dog meat so we would like to say thanks to the Urban Management Bureau in Guangyuan city for helping us by supplying vehicles to move our dogs!
Help us to rescue dogs from Yulin by donating.
Thank you for your support.
Our visit to Yulin Dog Meat Festival 2016 is only a few hours away. Our founder Du Yufeng and volunteers have made their way from Guangyuan to Chengdu with the intention of dropping off some of the sick dogs who need treatment, including one dog who has a big tumour on his nose, at Huai Ren Pet Hospital. They have also taken some adorable orphan puppies who are needing around the clock care and frequent feeding. Veterinary nurses at the Pet Hospital will take care of these babies until the Yulin visit is over. From Chengu, Du and our volunteers will take a flight to Nanning and from there they will travel to Yulin. We still need your help to save animals at Yulin and then give them medical treatment afterwards.
After Du had left Yulin, she received bad news about the dog shown in the video below with the tumour in his nose. You can see the update here.
Our founder Du Yufeng and our team are boarding the plane at Chengdu airport, ready to fly to Nanning airport in Guangxi on their scheduled flight leaving Chengdu at 06:50. The time to face the hell on earth that is Yulin Dog Meat Lychee Festival is getting closer.
When our flight from Chengdu in our native Sichuan Province touched down in Nanning, Guangxi Province, the start of our journey truly began. We bought tickets at the office to catch a bus from Nanning Airport in to Nanning town.
Tonight our founder Du Yufeng met with Marc Ching of Animal Hope and Wellness Foundation to discuss how she and our team can help him to rescue dogs. Things need to be thought out and decided but for now, it is late in Yulin so rest is needed by all to face the horrors tomorrow that all activists face when confronting dog and cat slaughter.
Goodnight for now.
You can donate to help us rescue animals from this year's Yulin festival via the Donate button at the top of the blog.
Thank you for your support.
At the entrance to Yulin's Dong Market there are cages full of dogs and cats awaiting their death, watching cage mates murdered in front of them, their cries are heartbreaking, the bloody scenes upsetting. The killings have already started. Obviously not wanting the world to see, one of the dealers came out of his stall and threatened our volunteer, Yang Dong, with a machete! Yang quickly ran out of the dealer's way. He escaped unhurt, but this is what we are up against from people who think their 'traditional culture' must be preserved. NO! This is NOT Chinese culture!
There are many purebreed dogs for sale in the markets. The vendor to whom these 2 Miniature Poodles belonged bragged to our founder Du Yufeng "Customers love to eat purebreed dogs. One customer bought 2 purebreed dogs this morning and killed them with a stick with just one hit each".
These 2 dogs are lucky. They are now safe but they are also sick. One of them has a big lump in it's throat but they are both being treated at a pet hospital.
Tomorrow is the Summer Solstice.
Tomorrow, the festival at Yulin really begins...
Rescuing dogs or cats from the meat trade is very emotional at the best of times but for us, sometimes it seems impossible. Of course, the actual rescuing is the easy part but it doesn't stop there. The dogs and cats are often full of diseases like Rabies or Canine/Feline Distemper, caught from others in such a close proximity. They are transported often for days in these conditions with no food or water. They often have broken limbs or tails from careless throwing of the cages in which they are packed so tightly in that they cannot even move. Thrown to the ground from trucks with no regard for their lives. This is when the reality of the situation begins to sink in. Do we have the space for the rescued animals but more importantly, once they are nursed back to health, do we have the financial means to look after them until they are adopted. Most we rescue are never adopted. We are a small organisation in a small city in Sichuan. We cry when we return back to our hotel rooms, remembering what we have seen and heard, toiling with the sense of responsibility that we have to those animals. We will do the best we can with what we have but ultimately we cannot rescue them all. We hope you will still support us like you are doing already. We hope we can meet your expectations but more importantly,
we hope we can meet the eyes of the animals if we are forced to walk away.
Now, we must sleep. Tomorrow is the start of the madness and sadism that we have seen all too often at Yulin's dog meat lychee festival.
This is why we fight to end the dog and cat meat trade.
Day of the Summer Solstice.
Yesterday our founder Du Yufeng and some of our volunteers were followed, in Yulin, wherever they went. A dozen or so police deliberately set out to delay them, trying to intercept them, afraid of their actions.
Today, at approx 3am, Du received a visit by 3 policemen at her hotel room. She and another activist, whom she is sharing a room with, were questioned. The police did not leave the hotel during the night. They are obviously afraid of us shooting the bloody scenes of slaughter of dogs and cats.
At dawn, Du and our volunteers managed to leave the hotel to have breakfast before heading to the market. There, they were confronted by hundreds of dog meat eaters who harassed and tried to intimidate them. They even saw the thugs who robbed Du of her money last year.
Things are very tense at Yulin now.
Du and our volunteer, Yang are well known by some officials in Yulin so they must tread carefully.
The harassment towards our founder Du Yufeng and our team continued when this bunch of dog dealers confronted them. They told Du, "The Yulin Dong Farmer's Market is a private space and outsiders, including any reporters are not allowed to go in". The arrogant thugs then said: "If you go any further you will be met with hands-on resistance"
Did Du take any notice? No! These cocky men are obviously threatened by our presence in Yulin and so are resorting to threats. The duo has never let any dog dealer or eater win and these are no different.
They know her face very well after her previous visits to Yulin so they should also know very well that she will never back down! They and their opinions, threats and harassment are of no importance to any of us. We are there for the animals not to pander to their egos!
Before traveling to Yulin, our volunteer Yang Dong, in the bottom photo pictured far right, contacted a lawyer for guidance on permanently closing down slaughterhouses and restaurants who operate in Yulin. The lawyer and his team arranged to meet Yang and our founder Du Yufeng at the hotel in which they are staying.
The killing of dogs and cats happens all year round, not just during the Summer Solstice festival. Back in Guangyuan we do this as a matter of course because only with the backing of the law and officials can these hellholes be closed down for good. If they can't show the officials the relevant paperwork to kill and cook dog meat then they are closed down.
Remember, dog meat is illegal. It does not pass China's food safety law requirements.
We know that some officials like to eat dog meat and a blind eye is turned and money changes hands so that the slaughterhouses and restaurants can carry on trading.
We do not live in Yulin so that makes it even harder to do things the correct way.
When the morning comes we will present our case to the Yulin City Food and Drug Administration office but if it is rejected, at least we will know that we tried.
The dog and cat meat mafia can NOT keep getting away with the corruption, harrassment, real threats of violence and actual violence towards activists and animal lovers who want the innocent lives saved and protected.
BAN DOG AND CAT MEAT TRADE FOREVER!!
The deputy director of Yulin Food and Drug Administration and two chiefs met with us today for the negotiations to close down the slaughterhouses permanently.
The secretary tried to tell us that dog (& cat) has no specific quarantine rules so they (live and dead) can be available for sale on the market but we countered this claim with the fact that the food safety law makes it clear that if there are no quarantine and vaccination certificates available for each of the animals, then they cannot be transported anywhere.
The Yulin government makes a lot of profit from the selling of dogs and dog meat (& more recently, cat). They have a vested interest in this trade and will do all they can to protect it. To protect the dog and cat meat mafia.
HOW can people of the law PROTECT this illegal activity? The corrupt officials are obviously on the payroll of the dog traders and butchers. We have to try and expose this corruption. We have to try to use every power we have within law to try and close these hellholes down permanently.
If we fail, we know that we tried....
for the animals.
Our Yulin 2016 visit has come to an end.
Our founder Du Yufeng and our team are now in Nanning treating the sick animals rescued and then will take them home.
The violence this year has been the worst that Du has experienced. The taunting and harassment can be accepted but the physical and very violent death threats and abuse can not. Grown men hit, pushed and threw things at Du. Our 22 year old volunteer Yang Dong was chased down the road by a butcher waving a machete. Yang was called a coward by some who commented on our photos. We would rather him run away than end up in hospital with serious injuries...or worse!
Du did save some animals but this wasn't the happy ending we hoped for either. Having made an agreement with a dog dealer, the dogs had been taken out of the filthy, rusty cages. Leashes were placed around the dogs' necks so that Du could walk them away from the scene. When Du handed over the money* to the dealer, a crowd of dog meat thugs quickly surrounded her and the rest of the team. Du and the others tried to find a way to push through the crowd, but these disgusting men would not let them leave. Things happened so quickly that no one could stop it. A commotion started and some of the men roughly grabbed hold of the dogs and pushed through the crowd, running off. With 4 of our dogs. The crowd cheered and let them through then packed in tighter so that none of our team could run after the thieves. We had managed to save some dogs from the most horrific death and then 4 of them were gone. Back to the hellhole they had just been saved from.
Du is absolutely devastated beyond belief.
Every year that she goes to Yulin, the more Du is taunted and harrassed from being recognised. The officials and police have always made a point of watching her wherever she went but this year they never left her alone. Tailing her in plain clothes, police would follow her every move, even going to her hotel room at 3am to question her and look at the photos on her phone.
Some were deleted.
We know that the corruption in the dog meat trade runs deep but Yulin is second to none. Money is the root of all evil. Very true in Yulin where dog dealers, butchers and restaurant owners give payouts to these corrupt officials. The whole festival should not exist if we look at the law but it does exist and is thriving. They know they are safe. They pay good money to have this protection.
The animals we saved will need love and rehabilitation to help them overcome what they have seen and heard. Long term support from your donations will help them until they are adopted- IF they are adopted.... We know from past experience that rescuing is the easy part. If we look at an average of 8 years for a dog's life span, caring for these damaged souls will take a lot of money, especially if they live the rest of their lives in the shelter.
We have not been a part of any other group's rescue.
Du and our team worked on their own.
Du apologizes for letting you all down, for not rescuing more animals but her own and the safety of our team was paramount and she could not risk staying there any longer.
We will update you about the rescued animals tomorrow once we have all rested.
Thank you for your support throughout all of this very difficult time.
If anyone wishes their donations to be refunded, please contact us.
*We know it is an emotive issue to buy dogs and cats and we know that the money given to the dealers enables them to buy more. We always try to rescue the animals with the help of the law. In other cities, the law would be sufficient to confiscate the animals but as you have learned, Yulin is a lawless city where the killing and consumption of dogs and cats is protected by the very people who could save them.
It is difficult knowing that hundreds of dogs are left behind in Yulin but our founder Du Yufeng has hired a truck to take the dogs that she rescued from Yulin to Nanning where they will be nursed back to full health.
Once they are well enough to fly back to Guangyuan, we will start to help them to recover from their ordeal. We see dogs being dragged to slaughter, wagging their tails. Dogs want to be our friends! Although Du has bought these dogs from traders in Yulin, she appreciates that saving dogs in this way will not end the dog or cat meat trade. It is a heartbreaking situation where sometimes the only way to save the dogs is to buy them. Whenever possible, Du works with the local police and authorities to close down slaughterhouses, butchers and restaurants and save the dogs & cats this way but as we stated previously, Yulin is full of corruption.
Above all, apart from long overdue laws being implemented, education is the only way that the dog & cat meat trade will end and this is why Du and our volunteers perform education events to tell people about the cruelty involved ithen killing the dogs & cats and also the risk to eater's health. See more on our website boaianimalcentre.weebly.com
Approx 10,000 dogs are slaughtered every year at Yulin Dog Meat Festival. Hundreds of thousands more will be in some parts of China throughout the year. A complete ban on dog (& cat) meat is the only way to stop this. In 2009 a draft for an animal protection law in China was handed to the National People's Congress. Nothing has b0een done to implement the law. We know it is not going to end over night. Decades of work and government lobbying by Chinese animal activists and animal lovers will not be in vain.
Thank you for all your comments, messages of support and donations.
We did the best we could but the situation didn't allow us to rescue as many animals as expected.
Thank you for fighting with us.
Our founder Du Yufeng and our team have gone back home to Guangyuan.
The work begins now of continuing the care for the sick dogs rescued from Yulin Dog Meat Festival. We are very grateful for all your help and support during Yulin festival time where approx 10,000 dogs are killed. Your donations will continue to help the ones rescued. They will need rehabilitation, as well as veterinary treatment, which could take months. We hope that you will help us to find homes for these dogs, to help them to overcome their ordeal completely by finding a forever home.
Do you remember the 2 Miniature Poodles who we saved this year from Yulin Dog Meat Festival? There's good news for one of them! He was fit and healthy and has been adopted by one of our friends in Guangzhou who fell in love with him. We know he'll be a spoilt boy!
The other poodle, a little girl, has not been so lucky. When our founder Du Yufeng rescued her, she found a hard lump in her throat and she was coughing a lot. She was taken to a pet hospital in Nanning and after some treatment, she was declared fit to fly so when Du and our team flew to Chengdu with her, they took her to Huai Ren pet hospital for a second opinion. After further investigations and blood tests, the vet diagnosed her with a serious lung infection, he can hear 'bubbles' when she breathes and, while having a full body check up, the vet found her abdomen was swollen. An ultrasound scan showed that she has thickening of her uterus wall with water inside. This is probably a result of her giving birth and then being stolen very soon after by a trafficker who took her to Yulin. She also has liver and kidney inflammation. So aswell as going through the most frightening experience in her life - seeing and hearing other dogs around her being slaughtered - she now has some serious things wrong with her.
We have faith in the vets at this hospital, we have used them many times and, because of that, we are comfortable with leaving her there to be treated while we go back to the shelter to help the other dogs to settle in to their new home with us.
As we've said before, rescuing is the easy part. The aftercare is the most anxious time while we wait to find out if dogs like this one will pull through so your donations will help this little lady to get the treatment that she needs.
We will visit her soon and as we receive updates from the vet, we will update you about her treatment.
What Happens After Yulin Dog Meat Festival?
Meet some of our Yulin Dog Meat Festival 2016 survivors.
Our rescued dogs are being treated for diseases like canine Distemper and Rabies.
The rescue is only the first step. Rehabilitating the dogs who have been through a very traumatic time is long term. Yulin may be well known around the world, for the wrong reasons, but the cruel slaughter of dogs and cats for their meat will continue to happen all year round in some parts of China (Yulin included). Whether it be in the open by butchers for restaurants or slaughtering the family pet, we mustn't just focus on Yulin. Help us to fight the dog and cat meat trade all year round by donating to be part of our education events.
We rescued 27 dogs from slaughter at Yulin. Buying the medicines needed to treat these dogs can be expensive. If you can help us treat these dogs over the coming weeks and months, please donate here.
We Accomodate 30 Dogs Saved By Marc Ching
Over the past week we've been getting a part of the shelter ready for some new arrivals. We are welcoming 30 dogs rescued from Yulin Dog Meat Festival 2016. These dogs were rescued by Marc Ching, founder of Animal Hope and Wellness Foundation. We arranged to meet Marc in Yulin and after he rescued hundreds of dogs, various groups across China helped to house them. He reached out to ask if we could take some and we are happy to do our bit to help. Typhoon Nida has affected the transportation of the dogs and the arrival date of the dogs has been and gone but we expect them to arrive at our shelter tomorrow.
The 30 dogs, rescued by Marc Ching of Animal Hope and Wellness Foundation at Yulin Dog Meat Festival this year are on their way to our shelter. Marc's team in Nanning loaded the dogs on to the truck at their end. The cages were tied down and so were the water bowls. The canvas roof was attached so that the dogs were sheltered from the sun. The driver has medical supplies on the truck with him and the paper work for transport. The video shows them at the start of their journey before the canvas roof was attached and then as they took a rest on the highway to Chongqing. They will arrive at our shelter soon.
The dogs rescued from Yulin Dog Meat Festival 2016 by Marc Ching of Animal Hope and Wellness Foundation Foundation have arrived at our shelter. It is approx 1400km from Nanning, Guangxi to our shelter in Guangyuan, Sichuan so it has been a long, tiring journey for the dogs but this truck ride was not the kind they were forced to take when heading to Yulin. Now, we are working in to Sunday morning to get them settled for their first night in a new place.
We worked into the morning, until about 7 o'clock, settling the 30 dogs, rescued from Yulin Dog Meat Festival this year by Marc Ching of Animal Hope and Wellness Foundation, into their kennels. They had been in their cages for around 20 hours from the time they left Nanning to arrival in Guangyuan and they were tired and hungry. Some of them had been travel sick and refused to eat anything but their tummies will soon settle.
When we went back to our founder Du Yufeng's house, there were some small puppies running loose around the stair entrance, a cardboard box nearby. We don't know if they were dumped last night or this morning. They have a skin disease. Why do people think that these living beings can be thrown away like rubbish?!
The 30 dogs we have taken in to our shelter, originally rescued by Marc Ching from Yulin Dog Meat Festival this year, are settling in. The cages they travelled in from Nanning to Guangyuan have been washed and disinfected and the dogs have had some rest, food and water. Most are in good condition, others who are losing their fur are being given haircuts to keep the fur clean and matt free.
It's feeding time at the shelter and it's the turn of Marc Ching's dogs, rescued from Yulin Dog Meat Festival this year, to be given their dinner.
Some of the dogs aren't too hungry but they are still getting used to the new sights, smells and sounds.
One little child felt the need to poop in the food bowl. Stress, trying to find their place in the pack and general change of scenery can be a coping factor for this type of behaviour so hopefully it will not be ongoing.
To see our education blog, click here.
Your continued support for our animals in China is truly appreciated.
Our founder Du Yufeng made the painful journey to Yulin for the 4th year in June 2015.
During the Summer Solstice, tens of thousands of dogs are killed during Yulin's annual 'Lychee Dog Meat Festival'.
Activists like Du gathered there to protest against dog meat eating and to try and educate the dog meat eaters about the cruelty involved and the danger to their health.
These photos were taken, by Du, at the market where the dogs are sold to butchers, ready to be slaughtered.
While activists have rescued dogs in previous years, the traders have grown wise and they play on emotions by taunting and raising the price of the dogs. Many times activists have to walk away because they can't afford to buy the dogs.
The traders know that activists like Du will try to buy (rescue) the dogs and each year they have grown wise, upping their prices to the activists, knowing that they cannot afford to buy the dogs. Du was in this position when she tried to buy some dogs and the traders wanted more money than Du had on her. She was in the heartbreaking situation of seeing dogs suffering but unable to save them. Instead she shared her bottle of water with them to give them some comfort before their death. Dogs are transported sometimes for days and then they are left around in cages while traders haggle the price to buy them.
In all this time they are given no food or water.
Du led a very small group of young activists (one, our young volunteer Yang from Guangyuan) and 2 from Hong Kong), taking on local supporters of eating dog meat at Yulin Dog Meat Festival. There are many supporters of dog meat celebrating the Summer Solstice but determined, Du and the activists carried on despite the harassment and intimidation.
Du always says education about the dog and cat meat trade is very important and is the only way that the trade will end so she and our young activist Yang held up banners with various messages on them, explaining that dog meat is a risk to health if eaten. This tactic is used often because if the empathy for the dogs and cats and the cruelty they endure is not there, then the eaters of the dog and cat meat may think twice about eating it if there is a risk to their health.
Du was robbed twice while protesting for the 4th year at Yulin Dog Meat Festival. An angry mob of dog meat supporters intimidated her and our young volunteer Yang, taunting them and Du ended up bruised and sore.
In Yulin there are dog meat supporters everywhere and they don't like activists who try to stop it. Du has been to Yulin Dog Meat Festival for 4 years now and each time she has been vocal about the cruelty involved and the risk to health from eating dog meat. Each time, Du has been harassed and intimidated but it hasn't stopped her from going back, from trying to stop the festival.
It was one of these traders (the wet market administrator) who robbed Du the first time at Dongkou Market. She reported this incident to the police but because no one was injured, no action was taken.
She was robbed a second time at Qiao Nan Market. This time the police, traffic police and Yulin city management were at the scene and again no action was taken. Du phoned the police too but they sent no one to attend.
In total Du has lost 6,230 Yuan, donated by kind animal lovers like yourself.
Police escorted Du and our young volunteer Yang away from an area of Yulin Dog Meat Festival and stopped them from protesting.
While more Chinese activists have made the journey to Yulin recently, Du has been the only one to openly condemn the dog meat festival year after year so that over time she has become the despise of the local government and the dog meat traders.
Dog traders are intimidating and have harassed Du in previous years. They do not care about activists, they care about their livelihoods - selling and killing dogs for profit.
Du always talks to the media so that news of the festival is spread far and wide, throughout China and the rest of the world. While most people on social media know about the festival, there are still so many who don't have Facebook, Twitter etc so the news is spread through newspapers and news reports on the TV. This is very important because the more people who know about the festival, the more pressure it puts on the Yulin government and China's dog (and cat) meat trade.
June 25th 2015 was the last day that our founder Du Yufeng was in Yulin.
Despite being robbed twice of money taken to rescue dogs and cats, she was able to buy 4 dogs with money left from your donations. Nanning Small Animal Protection also donated some money to Du after hearing of her plight - thank you to them.
Du also bought this sick kitten and sent it to a local vet for treatment.
This lucky cat already had a loving home waiting and was re homed with a local girl.
The dogs and cats were transferred to larger cages and were flown back to Chengdu airport with Du on the night of 25th June 2015. From there they traveled on to our shelter at Guangyuan.
In total and despite being robbed of her money twice, Du managed to rescue some dogs and cats from Yulin this year.
Meet 5 of the dogs and some of the cats....
Dan Dan (meaning egg). He is approx 2 months old,
Houng Dou (meaning red bean). He is approx 3 months old,
Shar Shar (meaning Shar Pei). He is approx 2 months old,
Lucky. He is approx 2 months old,
and Mao Mao (meaning hairy). She is approx 4 months old.
All the dogs rescued from Yulin have canine distemper and all of the cats have feline distemper (panleukopenia) but are responding well to treatment. Once fit and well they, and other dogs and cats in the shelter, will be available for adoption.
We will continue the fight against the dog and cat meat trade even though the festival in Yulin has finished.
Now, we have to concentrate on getting the new residents well and ask that if you can donate money to buy more medicines, it would be appreciated.
Lucky was adopted in April 2016.
2014 was the 3rd year that our founder Du Yufeng and some of our volunteers made the journey of nearly 1000 miles to protest at Yulin Dog Meat Festival.
Du helped other activists rescue dogs from Yulin but this year she didn't rescue any herself. She and our volunteers protested outside the Yulin government offices, demanding to see the mayor of Yulin but their pleas fell on deaf ears. They were harassed by local dog meat eaters who snatched posters from Du as she protested. Despite the intimidation the protest carried on.
Du and our volunteers went to the market place where all the traders barter with restaurant owners and butchers to get the best price for 'their' dogs. Walking among the cages, many dogs were seen with collars on them - stolen pets. The dogs were stressed, hungry and thirsty and very often fights would start in the cages. With no chance to get out of the cages to stretch their legs, they had no choice but to urinate and defecate on their cage mates.
Broken legs and tails were common. Traders don't care whether there are legs or tails hanging out of the cages when they pile them on top of one another and when they unload them it is quite common for them to throw the cages from the truck to the ground.
Pedigree breeds were in with cross breeds and mongrels.
Even puppies were in among the cages and contrary to belief that it is a dog meat festival, cats are sold, killed and eaten at Yulin too.
Du was with the activists who rescued (bought) dogs this year (2014). She helped them to barter with traders and then cared for the dogs and cats rescued in between protesting.
Despite rescuing some of the dogs and cats, many, many more were brutally killed and eaten.
Watch the video below featuring our founder Du Yufeng, our volunteers and other Chinese activists as they try to save dogs at Yulin. The news channel CNN featured Yulin Dog Meat Festival on their news report in 2014.
It also shows the intimidation shown towards activists from dog meat eaters and traders.
The 30 minute documentary, Hot Dog ~ The Real Truth Of Yulin was shown on Chinese television and the backlash against dog meat eaters and their supporters from Chinese animal lovers was enormous. Demands were sent to the government asking for dog meat eating to be banned and a small animal legislation be enacted immediately. Now more than ever, animal lovers in China are demanding change.
The documentary shows the Yulin festival from the prospective of the activists and it also shows the violence and intimidation shown towards them from dog meat eaters and traders. Thank you for watching.
In June 2013, our founder Du Yufeng again made the journey to Yulin. This time she went with the intent of helping to rescue some of the dogs as well as protesting as she had done previously in 2012.
While in Yulin, Du and some of our volunteers took the opportunity to hold a protest in front of the Yulin Government Offices and as usual, dog meat eaters and traders followed their every move, intimidating them and threatening them.
Du also visited some of the government offices to deliver letters and petitions from our partner, SPCA International, Humane Society International and Hand In Hand With Asia's Animal Activists. The petitions all asked the Yulin government to end the dog meat festival and ban the dog and cat meat trade.
Some of the protests were performed in front of dog meat buyers and eaters. Du and our volunteers exhausted themselves trying to educate these people but did not give up. Du even challenged a lady who was buying dog meat from one of the butcher's stalls. The protest and festival was covered by Chinese television.
From the moment Du and our team arrived in Yulin, a few days before the Dog Meat Festival and until they left, they were protesting. Protesting in Yulin during this time is extremely intimidating but none of the name calling and harassment from dog meat eaters and traders stopped Du and our team from trying to educate them about the cruelty and harm to their health.
In between all the protesting there were dogs rescued from a horrific death by Du and other activists who had made the journey to Yulin.
Du rescued 260 dogs, Jiangxi Volunteer Association rescued 180 dogs, 87 of those died from sickness and illness and a further 15 dogs were left with volunteers from Guangzhou.
The rescued dogs were taken to a Buddhist's farm in Shangrao, Jiangxi where they were assessed, given food, water and medical treatment and then when ready, were transferred to the relevant activist's shelters.
The following photos are some of the dogs rescued by Du and our team.
Many of the dogs sent to slaughter are bitches who are heavily pregnant. Many give birth in the trucks on the way to Yulin. This was the case with some of the dogs that Du rescued. Some of the puppies died en route before Du knew about them.
*One or more of the following photos have been circulated widely around the internet, many times without the correct information. The bitch gave birth as the truck stopped at the Buddhist farm in Shangrao. Du managed to grab hold of the puppy before it fell to the ground or died while the rest of the dogs were being unloaded.
The bitch gave birth in safety to another puppy when she was unloaded from the truck.
The puppy who had tried to make an escape for freedom while on the truck was reunited with his mother and sibling.
Other mothers also gave birth to puppies when unloaded. The mothers were given high protein supplements to help them recover from their ordeal so that they could feed the babies themselves. When they were too exhausted then the puppies were given to ne mothers like the one above to feed or hand reared.
While Du was out in Yulin rescuing dogs, she was badly bitten by a bitch who had just given birth and who Du had just saved from slaughter.
The butcher actually had the clamp around the bitch's neck, ready to take her out of the cage to be killed when Du did the deal with the trader to save her and her puppies. However, when Du went to lift the dog from the cage, the bitch panicked and bit Du on the leg. Du did not blame the dog because she was frantically searching for her puppies and after what she had already seen, dogs being killed in front of her, her survival and motherly instincts kicked in.
Du had to go to hospital because her leg was in a bad way but as soon as she was able she discharged herself so that she could get back to the transfer of the dogs from Yulin to the farm.
Sadly there were dead dogs in among the live ones. Often the traders will travel for days to reach Yulin. They themselves stop for food, drink and rest but the dogs are never given that necessity and many end up dying before they reach Yulin. These dogs were given Buddhist burials by us and the other rescuers and given the respect they deserved but didn't receive during their lives.
The rescued dogs were all breeds, sizes and sex. They were unloaded from the truck and taken to various buildings on the farm according to their state. Many were very sick and needed intravenous fluids and drugs. They were intensively cared for by all the activists in turn 24 hours a day.
Each of them looked after each other's dogs to make sure the best of care would be given to them.
Some of the dogs were just too sick to be treated at the farm so they were taken to a vet clinic in Jiangning.
Many of the dogs rescued had collars on, clearly someone's stolen pet. The activists responsible for each group of dogs took photos of these dogs and displayed them on their social accounts like Weibo, QQ, etc, appealing for the owners to come forward. Often no one sees their dog on the internet. Remember that the dogs may have been stolen from across China and exchanged hands a few times before the trader brings them to Yulin. When no one comes forward to claim their pet, once the dog is well again it will be put up for adoption.
There are still many people who keep dogs in China. Not as pets but as guard dogs and one of the dogs that Du rescued, a German Shepherd which she named Hei Bei (meaning Black Shell), looked to be a guard dog.
Hei Bei did not like being inside and preferred being close to doors. He was extremely thin when he was rescued with patches of his skin infected and crusted over with scabs. He soon responded to treatment and his skin was clear not long after his rescue.
The activists who rescued the dogs from Yulin 2013 decided to help the Buddhist monks, who had given the dogs a safe haven at their farm, build a shelter in Shangrao for their dogs. They knew that the monks would give the dogs a loving home for the rest of their lives and that the activists could visit them any time.
So the building work on the new shelter began and soon it was finished and ready for it's new residents.
The aim of any animal rescue organisation is to rescue dogs like these and have them adopted and that is what happened to one lucky little dog rescued from Yulin Dog Meat Festival 2013.
Niu Niu (meaning girl girl) recovered well from her ordeal and did not have any long lasting health problems.
Her new adoptive parents, Mr & Mrs Qian drove all the way from Zhejiang to Shangrao (approx 4 and a half hours) to take Niu Niu home with them.
2012 was the first year that our founder Du Yufeng made the journey to Yulin to protest against the Lychee Dog Meat Festival there.
She and some of the volunteers from our shelter attempted to educate locals and tourists who were buying and eating dog meat about not only the cruelty involved in the dog meat industry but also about the danger to the eater's health.
They gave out leaflets and set up information points as well as protesting on different days at different parts of the markets.
As well as local people from Yulin, tourists from other parts of China were present at the festival.
Du was the first person to document the festival and speak to the media, making her the first person to bring the festival to the attention of the world.
Du posted a statement on her Weibo account that year which was shared many times by Chinese animals lovers. Her statement explained that the festival was tarnishing China's image.
Du documented many dogs being brought to Yulin to be slaughtered. Some were brought by the hundreds in trucks, others were trussed up or crammed in to cages, balancing on the back of motorcycles.
Some people even brought their own pet dogs to be slaughtered for their own Summer Solstice celebrations.
The following photos were taken by Du and this situation made her and all of our volunteers cry.
The man brought his Golden Retriever to be slaughtered. When Du learnt of his intentions she pleaded with the owner to let her buy the Goldie from him. He refused, saying that the dog had served her purpose by having lots of litters of puppies and making him lots of money. He bragged that only recently she had given birth to a litter but now she was too old to have any more so therefore he was going to have her slaughtered for his own celebrations.
The owner found a butcher to buy his dog and left her there until later when he would collect the meat.
Again, Du and our volunteers begged the butcher to let them have the Goldie but the butcher refused.
To leave her tied up, probably thinking that her owner was coming back for her was heartbreaking and later when Du again passed by the butcher's stall, intending to ask to buy the Goldie, she was told she had already been killed and was directed to her dead body, lying next to another Goldie.
Unfortunately dog meat traders do not differentiate between breeds of dogs and Golden Retrievers are a popular breed at dog meat markets.
Du was interviewed about our visit to Yulin festival. She explained to the Chinese public who were watching the interview on television what happens to the dogs when they are killed. Many people still don't know of the torture involved when killing the dogs so it is important that the message is put out there. You can watch the interview below.
In between documenting the festival, Du and our volunteers protested against the festival and the dog & cat meat trade. They gave leaflets to people passing by, telling them about the risk to their health when eating diseased dogs and cats. Many people don't bother about the cruelty involved in the killing to the sentient beings they are going to eat. The dogs and cats are purposefully tortured. The longer the torture means, to them, better tasting meat. In reality the toxins sent out by the body of the animal as it endures the torture are a real risk to the eater's health. This route often works more than saying the killing is cruel.
The best feeling is when the youngsters want to help us protest against the dog and cat meat trade. Many young Chinese people are turning against their parents and grandparents cuisine and realising that dogs and cats are companions not food. They want the trade to end and for the cruelty to be stopped so they are the future of Chinese animal rights. They go home with the information and literature that we give them and hopefully make their elders see what they see.
Hundreds of dogs and cats are killed during the Yulin Dog Meat Festival. Du and our team documented this too and when they returned to their hotel room at the end of the day (and night) protests they were exhausted from crying about what they had seen and heard. They had seen dog slaughter before and visited illegal slaughterhouses but to see the killing on such a mass scale was horrific for them.
The butchers take each dog to be slaughtered from the cage and beat it over the head until it is unconscious. They are then punctured in the heart and left to drain the blood life out of them.
As documented by one of our volunteers when as she tried to comfort a Samoyed, the butcher pushed a stick in to the heart again, prolonging the agony that the dog was in. She tried to close the dog's eyes and begged him to let go and go on to his next life but the dog was fighting to live. At least he felt gentle hands and a soft voice to comfort him as he died but this experience made our volunteer heartbroken and determined to expose the cruelty involved.
Some dogs are tortured far worse. They are still alive as their fur is blow torched from their bodies or as they are lowered in to vats of boiling water. The killing and screams from the dogs is done in full view of the other dogs.
The following photos of Pian Shan Kong kneeling before the dead dogs and asking forgiveness have been shared on the internet all over the world. Pian was in the group with Du, protesting against the dog and cat meat trade.
He was taunted by dog meat traders who laughed at him praying but it did not deter him.
The message on his t shirt reads:
''I on behalf of humans sincerely apologise to the animals''
|Bo Ai Animal Protection Centre Of Guangyuan||