By Amanda froelich
Due to activists’ efforts, South Korea is closing the doors of its largest dog slaughterhouse and is converting the space into a park.
Earlier this year, the Taepyeong-dong complex in Seongnam used to host six different slaughterhouses. In fact, the shops were responsible for supplying much of the country’s demand for dog meat. But following a series of developments, the slaughterhouse complex was forced to close its doors. Now, the process of tearing down the facilities is in motion.
As GoodNewsNetwork reports, consumption of dog meat is rapidly declining in South Korea. This is largely due to younger generations turning their noses away from the food, once considered a delicacy. Of course, a survey conducted in June of 2018 also revealed that 70 percent of South Koreans will not eat dog meat in the future. So, a cultural shift is also clearly occurring.
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Earlier this year, a district court in Bucheon fined a farmer for unlawful animal slaughter. The court cited the Animal Protection Act and ruled that meat consumption is not a legal justification to kill dogs. Shortly after, Seoul City announced that there will be no more dog slaughterhouses at Kyungdong Market in Dongdaemun. Around the same time, President Moon Jae-In, a self-proclaimed animal lover, pledged to consider removing cats and dogs from the legal definition of livestock.
“Both as a Korean citizen and an animal campaigner, it was incredibly moving for me to a part of the historic closure of this notorious dog slaughterhouse,” said Nara Kim of Humane Society International in a statement. “This really feels like a landmark moment in the demise of the dog meat industry in South Korea, and sends the clear message that the dog meat industry is increasingly unwelcome in Korean society.”
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IMAGE CREDIT: Michael Bernard, Humane Society International