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HSI Condemns Government-Ordered Dog Killing in China

Humane Society International

Chinese animal protection groups and international animal advocacy groups, including Humane Society International, are asking the Chinese government to stop killing dogs and to adopt humane policies for rabies control and urban animal management.   

HSI, Animals Asia Foundation, International Fund for Animal Welfare and Act Asia for Animals sent letters to Chinese officials in Beijing, Hong Kong and Shaanxi calling for an immediate end to a dog cull in Hanzhong City of Shaanxi.

"Dog culling is inhumane and ineffective," said Kelly O'Meara, director of international programs at HSI. "Modern China should have no tolerance for these cruel methods. HSI has offered to assist in the training and implementation of humane programs to control disease and dog population growth, including vaccination and spay/neuter."

HSI has obtained a copy of a government order issued to Laozhuang Township residents of Chenggu County, which is part of Hanzhong city in Shaanxi province. The order demanded that dog owners kill their dogs within 48 hours or have them killed by the military police at a cost of 100 yuan, or $16 each.

According to dog owners and information from the Chinese government, dog killing squads did not just slaughter dogs on the streets, as owners of registered dogs had feared. A large number of household pets have been killed. Public resistance to the order was widespread. In response, the county government required that no live dogs were allowed in districts assigned to the squad teams.

The Hanzhong dog massacre was carried out swiftly despite outcry from within China and abroad. According to the latest Chinese media report, some 30,000 dogs have been killed in Yangxian alone, another county under Hanzhong City. Earlier, a dog cull in Heihe, Heilongjiang Province was stopped in response to mounting pressure from domestic groups and international organizations.

HSI offers to develop a humane management program in China for companion animals. It has helped to empower and educate the many Chinese animal welfare organizations on the ground. To help end indiscriminate and massive dog killing, HSI will continue to join international efforts to facilitate policy change in China.  

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Humane Society International is the international arm of The Humane Society of the United States, one of the world's largest animal protection organizations — backed by 11 million people. HSI is creating a better future for animals and people through advocacy, education, and hands-on programs. Celebrating animals and confronting cruelty worldwide — On the web at hsi.org.