With the upcoming Boknal days- the three hottest days of the lunar calendar when dog meat consumption is most popular in South Korea- calls for an end to the dog meat industry are getting louder!
This year the boknal days fall on the 13th July, 23rd July and 2nd August. On these days, it has become ‘custom’ for many Koreans- even those who do not usually do so- to consume dog meat stew- “bosintang”- as it is believed to have ‘cooling effects’ to help replenish stamina during Korea’s sweltering summer.
During these days, tens of thousands, if not hundreds of thousands, of dogs are sold and slaughtered in markets, restaurants and health stores throughout the country.
South Korea is the only country in the world known to farm dogs commercially to supply the demand for dog meat and associated products. The estimated 2 million dogs raised and slaughtered each year live miserable lives. Throughout their short lives, they are never shown anything but brutality, and an absolute indifference to their sentience.
Whilst often defended as ‘culture’ or ‘tradition’, the practice of farming and slaughtering dogs for human consumptions is widely considered shameful and distasteful in South Korea, as pet ownership rises rapidly and people’s tolerance for animal cruelty decreases. Opinion polls show that there is growing opposition from within South Korea, particularly amongst younger generations, and the call for an end is becoming louder!