This past year has gone by so quickly and here we are again facing yet another horror show which will be played out in Yulin, China, and is scheduled to start on 21st June 2016. At least a thousand dogs and cats (numbers provided by Animal Asia: https://www.animalsasia.org/intl/media/news/news-archive/chinas-yulin-dog-meat-festival-what-we-know.html) will be mass slaughtered in the most horrific ways possible to satisfy those who wish to eat their meat.
In past years as many as 10,000 to 15,000 dogs have been killed at the Yulin festival which takes place to mark the summer solstice. Today, thankfully that number is a lot lower but even one dog killed this way is one dog too many. Dogs will be stunned by a sharp blow to the head with a hammer like object (the lucky few will be killed outright) then thrown into a special machine like a tumble dryer with sharp knives to defur the animal or they will be blow torched. Others will be electrocuted or hung. After all of this the dog is then placed in a large pot of boiling water to be cooked while the dog may still be alive.
Some believe the animal is made to suffer as much as possible to produce adrenaline which is claimed by the butchers to make the meat taste better and to also have some medicinal benefits for the consumer. Others believe that inefficient killing methods results in a lingering death for some animals. These barbaric acts are done in front of other dogs and cats waiting the same fate and it has been documented that some animals are physically sick with fright as it is pulled from its cage to be slaughtered. What is even worse many of these animals will be stolen pets from loving homes.
For one woman this will be her third year of facing those horrors for real and her name is Yang Xiaoyun, known to most people simply as Madam Yang. Madam Yang has been saving dogs from the dogmeat trade and from the streets of China for over 20 years. She will be leaving her home town of Tianjin for the arduous journey to Yulin the 16th June to first lobby the Yulin Town hall to try and stop the dog torture festival from even taking place. If that fails then she will enter the brutal dog meat market herself and try and save as many innocent lives as possible.
Madam Yang will be paying to rescue dogs from this year’s Yulin festival by money given to her by kind neighbours, friends and family. She however has stated to me that she would rather not handle any donations herself after she was (and still is) subjected to the most vile hate campaign against her started by the charity No To Dog Meat. This charity have raised over £93,000 using Madam Yang’s name and so far have only given her a fraction of that money. In their efforts to keep what is rightly hers No To Dog Meat started a vicious online campaign to defame Madam Yang. The pressure became too much at one point that Madam Yang toyed with the idea of giving up animal rescues altogether. But like most people with a burning desire to help the unfortunate dogs and cats in China she could not turn her back on them. And here she is again, facing most people’s nightmares for real.
Madam Yang asked me to join her to document how her time in Yulin will be spent and to follow her journey back to Tianjin with her wards, but with a heavy heart I had to decline due to financial restrictions. Madam Yang has said she will try and keep me up to date with all that is happening with her in Yulin but I realise this may not be possible due to the task in front of her and the mental strain it will undoubtedly put upon her. I am hoping to revisit Madam Yang in the not too distant future but until then I wish her a safe journey and every success in lobbying the town hall to get this vilest of ‘festivals’ banned forever.
Meeting Madam Yang :
Madam Yang’s dogs :
Dogs that will be slaughtered for the dinner table