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yulin dog festival

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Controversial 10-day Yulin Dog Meat Festival set to kick off amid cancellation, rescue efforts

  • The annual Lychee and Dog Meat Festival in Yulin, China, is scheduled to start on June 21, marking the beginning of the summer solstice.
  • Critics say the festival was not launched in 2009 as a cultural or historical event, but rather as a commercial gathering to help boost the sales of struggling local dog meat traders.
  • Up to 15,000 dogs and cats are believed to have been slaughtered annually in the festival’s prime years, but local and international pressures have reduced the figure to around 3,000 in recent years.
  • Dogs and cats butchered for the festival are often pets stolen from their families, crammed into tight cages and loaded into trucks for long-distance travel.
  • Ultimately, the animals are hanged, beaten to death with a metal pipe or thrown alive into a drum of boiling water — all in front of one another.
  • Activists are citing China’s ongoing COVID-19 resurgence as justification for Yulin authorities to cancel the festival, warning that it could be a super-spreader event.

Efforts to save as many canines as possible among the hundreds butchered during China’s annual Yulin Dog Meat Festival are reportedly underway as the 10-day “tradition” commences in less than two weeks.

The controversial event, officially known as the Lychee and Dog Meat Festival — in reference to the fruit that is also consumed by participants — was launched in 2009 in Yulin, Guangxi Province, to supposedly mark the beginning of the summer solstice. However, this cultural origin story is disputed by critics’ assertions that the festival was commercially motivated as dog meat traders struggled with sales at the time of its inception.

Activists Hope China’s Yulin Dog Meat Festival Could Be Cancelled This Year, Locals Say ‘Nah’

Reports that local authorities in Yulin will be canceling this year’s dog meat festival in the southern Chinese city have caused jubilation among dog lovers and animal rights activists. The annual tradition, in which thousands of dogs are collected in small dirty cages and abused before they are eaten over a 10-day festival, was originally scheduled to commence on June 21.

Activists, however, cited local sources who reported that selling dog meat has been banned a week before the festival. Those who are caught violating the ban will be arrested and fined up to $15,000.