Netizens debate throwing money to save dogs

Updated: 2011-04-17 16:53
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BEIJING - Over 500 dogs being delivered to a butcher house were saved by a Chinese animal protection organization and redeemed with 100,000 yuan ($15,300) Friday.

The incident then triggered debate among Chinese netizens about the necessity of pouring so much money and efforts into saving dogs.

On Friday, a truck loaded with over 500 dogs were stopped by volunteers from animal protection organization on Jingha expressway Beijing section.

Netizens debate throwing money to save dogs

A volunteer helps unload incaged dogs, which are rescued before being slain, in Beijing, April 16, 2011. Animal protection activists Friday stopped a truck on the way transporting 520 dogs to a slaughterhouse in Northeast China's Jilin province on the Beijing-Harbin Highway. LeepPet Holding Corp, a pet service company, and Shangshan Animal Charity Fund finally bought all the animals with 115,000 yuan ($17,606) from the dog trader early Saturday morning. Volunteers then transported the dogs to an animal care center of the China Small Animal Protection Association (CSAPA) in Beijing, providing them with food and medical treatment. [Photo/CFP]

Beijing Times reported these dogs were being delivered to slaughter houses in the city of Changchun, northeast Jilin province and would be eventually served on dinner tables.

After negotiations with the truck driver, pet service provider Leepet Holding Corp. and a philanthropic foundation, Shangshan Foundation purchased these dogs, each paying 50,000 yuan.

Dogs were then delivered to the headquarter of China Small Animal Protection Association (CSAPA), being taken care of and waiting for adoption.

After the "dog saving mission" was reported, Chinese net users debate over whether saving dogs worth so much efforts and money while there are still many poor and needy people in China lacking assistance.

Some net users ague the dog saving mission is placing overt attention to animals while lots of needy people are still left unattended.

A microblogger "Xiaowulaitajie" said on China's twitter-like website,, "Dogs are saved, adopted and they attracted media spotlight. We'd better spend such money and take such efforts in helping the needy people."

Another microblogger, Liluping, said "We poured such huge sum of money into saving dogs. I would rather the money be spent on disaster relief."

Some applaud volunteers's actions and show eagerness of offering their helping hands to those saved dogs.

Still many disapprove those "saving dogs" critics, arguing that such act nonetheless embodies social progress.

A microblogger named "broken bridge" said, saving dogs does not run counter to taking care of people. As long as people are paying attention to public affairs, they are promoting social progress. Such enthusiasm in public affairs will help raise social awareness in helping the needy.

KevinHSun, another net user, said it's pointless arguing why we should save dogs while millions of people are still suffering hunger. Saving dogs and saving the poor are both acts embodying civilization and social progress.

Net user's opinions also divide over whether people should stop eating dogs, but some argue nobody could force their own moral standards on others.

A microblogger, Michae, said nobody could force their moral standards and habits on others. Another expressed similar ideas: "I am raising a pet dog, so I don't eat dogs, but I can't push others not to eat."

According to a news release posted on the website of the CSAPA, knowing that three to five dog-loaded trucks pass by each day on Jingha expressway, their volunteers waited there on Friday morning and stopped a truck.

After it was first reported on microblog, hundreds of volunteers swarmed to Jingha expressway, taking with them dog food, water and medicines, and help CSAPA with registering dogs and curing the wounded ones.