Condemning the Yulin Dog Meat Festival

On September 14, 2016 hundreds of people travelled from across the country to attend a briefing that I hosted on the Yulin Dog Meat Festival. At the briefing, Marc Ching, the Founder of the Animal Hope and Wellness Foundation, played 60 seconds of footage he secretly recorded documenting the inhumane slaughter of dogs in cities throughout Asia. The compilation was disturbing: dogs being burned alive, dogs being skinned alive, and dogs being boiled alive; dogs having their paws cleaved off with dull butchers knives, and dogs being staked to the ground and beaten to death. No one can watch this type of footage and walk away unaffected.

Rep. Hastings with Valarie Ianniello, Director of Operations
of the Animal Hope and Wellness Foundation, and Liberty,
a dog rescued from a slaughterhouse in Cambodia
after having its paws cut off.

The festival in Yulin is noteworthy because of the local belief that animals should suffer painful deaths in order to improve their taste. The purpose of my briefing was to shine a light on these horrific practices and dozens of other events throughout Asia that celebrate animal cruelty.

On January 6, 2017, I reintroduced my resolution condemning the Dog Meat Festival in Yulin, China, and urging China to end the dog meat trade. I will soon introduce legislation urging all nations to end the trade and cruel practices that often come with it.

While the majority of people in China do not consume dog meat and dog meat is not a part of mainstream Chinese culinary practices (in fact, millions of Chinese citizens recently voted in support of a legislative proposal by Zhen Xiaohe, a deputy to the National People’s Congress of China, to ban the dog meat trade), the government turns a blind eye to the practice of torturing dogs and cats. I have always advocated for the humane treatment of all living things. This resolution is the first of its kind to focus Congress’ attention toward animal welfare issues overseas, and I will continue to work towards its passage.

Read a copy of the resolution here: