A charity based in Lincolnshire, U.K., has saved hundreds of dogs from China’s meat trade by collaborating with local shelters and transporting the canines.
New ‘leash’ on life: Led by Kerry Elliman, Candy’s Hound Rescue has rescued more than 400 dogs from China’s dog meat trade over the past two years. In a new interview with the BBC, Elliman emphasized that their mission is not to end the trade, but to educate and inform.
Elliman said the trade involves horrific practices, such as subjecting dogs to beatings and exposing them to starvation while keeping them confined in cramped cages.
Survivor stories: Despite the challenges, Elliman believes that bringing the dogs to the U.K. makes a difference. Tang Tang, one of those they have rescued, still bears the scars of repeated head blows and untreated diabetes.
“She’s got all the scars on her back end,” Elliman said. “What they do to weigh them — especially the sight hounds — is they tie metal wire around their legs and weigh them.”
Candy’s Hound Rescue operations: In an interview with Grimsby Live last year, Elliman shared insights into the logistical challenges of rescuing dogs from China, highlighting the hefty cost of transportation at around 2,500 pounds ($3,174).
“It is quite a big job and we’re constantly trying to fundraise. I foster most of the dogs at my home, so I don’t have kennels, and last week I had 20 dogs at home, because obviously I run Greyhound Protection U.K. as well, and I also have about five or six rescue homes in the Midlands that I really trust, but most of them come through me.”
While Elliman initially focused on greyhounds, she has since rescued all dog breeds. They are later transferred to individuals more experienced in handling the specific breeds.
Opposition to the trade: Candy’s Hound Rescue, which relies heavily on public donations, is supported by the Charity Humane Society International/U.K. The organization also works in partnership with a Chinese group called Vshine, which recently helped rescue 19 dogs from an illegal slaughterhouse.
The organization noted that despite the prevalent belief, most people in China and Asia do not consume dog meat. Opposition to the trade in the region has reportedly grown due to concerns about cruelty and health risks.