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16 Dogs Rescued From Yulin Meat Trade “Festival” Signifies Small Step in Ending Inhumane Tradition

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UPDATE June 30, 2017: The horrors of the Yulin, China, Dog Meat “Festival” started on June 21 and ended on June 30. Out of sadness and respect for the suffering of so many animals, we removed our online petition the day the “festival” began.

But we have not forgotten the thousands of helpless dogs and cats who endured unspeakable torture and death during this grotesque event, nor the millions of others who succumb to the vicious and illegal dog meat trade in Asia every day of the year.

We thank every one of the nearly 60,000 people from around the world who signed our anti-Yulin petition, which is being forwarded to the target authorities, as promised. We will continue to do what we can to give you an opportunity to make your voice heard on this matter.

And we will continue to help as many Yulin survivors as possible. On May 22, we welcomed 16 dogs who were rescued from last year’s atrocity. They lived for 11 months in a shelter in China, and arrived safely on Long Island after an exhausting 23-hour journey.

Meet Febo  Meet Fido  Meet Jacky  Meet Kit


Several of these dogs adjusted quickly and have already been adopted. The beautiful dogs shown above are currently available for adoption in our Port Washington, NY Adoption Center. The others who suffered varying degrees of trauma, are making progress, and most will be ready for adoption soon. Not surprisingly, it’s taking time for them to come out of their shells and learn to trust human beings. Each of these dogs is an individual, and our skilled and compassionate Pet Behavior Team is using gentle, time-tested methods to help them overcome their brutal pasts so they can experience safety and love in a real home.


Monday, May 22nd may have been just another day for many, but for the 16 dogs transported to North Shore Animal League America after being rescued from suffering a cruel demise at the Yulin Dog Meat Trade Festival in China, it was momentous occasion.

On this day, they arrived safely at John F. Kennedy International Airport, after a 23-hour flight, to enjoy the first day of the rest of their lives thanks to our collaborative rescue efforts with Animal Hope and Wellness Foundation. Once carefully removed from the plane and loaded onto one of our Mobile Rescue Units, these lucky dogs were transported to the sanctity of our Port Washington, N.Y. campus – a safe haven were they were treated with dignity and compassion rather than being paraded around the streets in wire cages, tortured, and butchered for consumption.

Upon arriving at the world’s largest no-kill animal rescue and adoption organization these little survivors were first examined by our veterinary staff to check for any glaring issues that would be cause for immediate concern. After being medically cleared, it was off to enjoy a soothing bath at the hands of our nurturing groomers. Once the pampering commenced it was on to a visit with our highly skilled pet behavior specialists for an initial meet and greet. Through this extensive collaborative effort we were able to provide these 16 companion pets with everything they need to be ready for that day when they can be placed up for adoption and find the responsible, loving home they so desperately deserve.  

“The people at Animal Hope and Wellness Foundation personally rescued these dogs from last year’s festival, purchasing some of them as young as five months old to ensure no harm would come to them. When we reached out asking if we could be of any assistance they told us about these dogs. We knew that rescuing them and helping them find loving homes was a great way to get involved,” said Animal League America Director of Rescue Services Cindy Szczudlo. “Each year, thousands of dogs and puppies, and hundreds of cats and kittens, are slaughtered and eaten in “celebration” of the summer solstice. Whether it be creating a petition, or collaborating with other organizations to rescue animals from the area, we want to help put an end to this grotesque practice.”

To date, nearly 60,000 outraged people have signed our petition to express their desire to bring an end to the inhumane festival which takes place in Yulin, China on June 15-21. Because of the overwhelming support, the global media is abuzz with rumors, contradictions, and mixed messages. Some say the Chinese Government has banned dog meat from the festival. Others say the ban is only for a week and doesn't include cat meat. Others say the event will go on as usual. Whatever the outcome, our collective voices have been heard. If and when the “festival” does end it will be because the people have spoken.

Please continue to support our Rescue Fund, so together we can change the world - one paw at a time.


Meet Our Yulin Rescue Dogs


These dogs have come a long way and they are eager to meet you. Learn more about each of our new mutt-i-grees® and how you can make them part of your family.