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Olympic Tourists Beware: Restaurants In Pyeongchang May Be Serving You Dog Meat

In South Korea, dog is a common menu item. People of the country believe that the meat of canines helps increase energy and vitality, and it's considered a summertime delicacy.

About one million dogs per year are killed and consumed in the country, despite activists trying to have dog meat banned. Local authorities requested that restaurants stop serving dog meat for the Olympic events, but it doesn't look like many have complied with the request.

Animal welfare activists have been campaigning for restaurants to boycott dog meat for the 2018 Winter Olympics, but to no avail. Only two restaurants in the country have complied.

Other restaurants continue to put the offensive ingredient into their food. In an attempt to discourage dog meat dishes during the Olympic games, the largest dog meat market in Seongnam were shut down.

Restaurant owners pushed back against the protests and calls for boycott. "We've faced a lot of complaints from restaurant operators that we are threatening their livelihood," said Lee Yong-bae, a government official for Peyeongchang County.

"Some of them initially shifted to selling pork or things instead of dog meat only to find their sales plunging sharply. They then switched back to dog meat," Lee Yong-bae continued.

Business owners who lost revenue due to the shutting down of dog markets are now demanding compensation from the government.
“Almost 80% of our customers visit our shops to buy fresh dog meat, so what are they going to do if we cannot provide it for them? Is the government going to pay us?” said one trader to the Korea Herald.

Dog meat is tough, red meat with a greasy consistency that has to be boiled in order to make it tender. It's frequently on the menu in South Korea, not just because locals love it, but because it can be obtained cheaply, especially if food preparers are willing to get it from shady sources.

Taking advantage of the fact that livestock health laws don’t apply to the domestic animal, some distributors have taken to rounding up strays from the streets. Dogs are tortured and killed in brutal ways. Often, they ignore if the animals are suffering from any kind of illness or disease that might taint the meat.

Even in the regulated markets, dogs are often kept in deplorable conditions. Shoppers choose from live animals, which are then butchered in plain sight. Dogs are regularly electrocuted, hanged or beaten to death.

Sadly, just being a conscientious customer isn’t enough. Some restaurants and food vendors are willing to lie to tourists about the type of meat they're eating. Many signs advertising dog meat have been replaced with sings advertising goat meat, chicken or pork.

In some undercover videos, even when tourists asked if there was any dog meat in their dish, they were lied to by the food server.

The popularity of dog meat is in decline due to the rise in dogs as household pets, and it’s becoming taboo to use dog meat for food in some districts. But in some other regions, traditions continue and the market continues to thrive.

In Seoul, dog meat is classified as 'detestable', but it's not a legal classification that prevents the sale or purchase of the meat.

Source: MailOnline
Photo: YouTube

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