Yulin Dog Meat Festival: 10,000 dogs to be killed and eaten at China’s annual food event

The annual solstice event features the grim slaughter of man’s best friend. Government officials argue the festival isn’t sanctioned but activists say they should do more to stop it.

Right now, over ten thousand dogs are being dragged to the southern Chinese province of Guangxi, where they will be slaughtered – sometimes boiled alive, sometimes strangled, sometimes throats slit or beaten to death – cooked, and eaten. Reportedly, many of the dogs stuffed unto overflowing cages have collars, signs that they are stolen pets.

It’s an annual event dubbed the Yulin Dog Festival, held on the solstice, and it’s been drawing moral outrage from around the world.

Sometimes described as a generations-old tradition, Yulin’s festival was in fact started in 2009, though the region does have a long history of eating canines. Admittedly, it’s a tradition that is beginning to show signs of fading away as China’s economy continues to grow and more and more of its population starts to keep pets as opposed to eat them. But it’s not gone yet.

In contrast to initial reports that local officials had banned the barbaric tradition, investigations by the animal rights groups seem to indicate this is not the case. Even if it’s no longer officially sanctioned – the Chinese government distanced itself from the festival last year, and “discouraged” the execution of dogs, at least in public – everything is in place for another slaughter.

“’Mass dog slaughter is still going on at Yulin despite the local authorities trying to give the impression that’s it’s ended,” Peter Li of the Humane Society International told the Daily Mail. “The Yulin government has declared the “festival” will not happen, but this is mere semantics and thousands of dogs will still die for their meat whether it’s called a festival or not.”