News articles and blogs 2013
1st December 2012 - Chiangrai Times and Life With Dogs - 750 Smuggled Dogs Rescued From Slaughter By Thai Navy Patrol - Thai Naval Authorities on Thursday rescued 800 live dogs from an illegal meat trading ring in this northeastern Thai province and a suspect apprehended while transporting the animals to the Lao PDR across the Mekong River.
(The 800 dogs will be taken to a shelter where they will be monitored for possible communicable diseases for a period before being sent to various dog shelters)
The dogs were to be loaded on a boat to be sent across the river for transhipment to a neigbouring country to a meat trade syndicate on the other side of the Mekong River.
Apart from the 800 dogs, the officers found 100 empty cages on the truck, indicating the high demand in the winter.
29th December 2012 - Life With Dogs - 300 Dogs Saved from Thai Smugglers - Acting on an informant’s tip, Thai authorities say they have spared more than 300 dogs from certain death. According to the Bangkok Post, naval officers working with local police conducted a joint raid in Thalad village, Nakhon Phanom province on Sunday. Officers blocked a boat loaded with hundreds of caged dogs to prevent it from crossing the Mekong river and escaping to Laos. The dogs were bound for Vietnamese restaurants, where demand and prices have escalated due to recent efforts to curtail the illegal dog meat trade. In fact, in recent months, the cost of dog meat has doubled, from 500 baht ($16) each to 1,000 baht.Somdee Kahntayangyuen, Nakhon Phanom’s deputy governor, says demand for dog meat skyrockets each year when Vietnamese restaurants prepare feasts for the traditional New Year on January 23.According to police, the traffickers fled the scene before they could be apprehended.
2nd November 2012 - Thanh Nien News - Unfettered by regulations, the dog meat industry engages freely in extremely unhygienic, unscrupulous and cruel practices - Hieu says he is well aware of the danger of sick and poisoned dogs. "Whenever we suspect a dog is poisoned or sick, we cut their heads off at the beginning itself, so as to avoid being cut by their teeth when we slaughter," he said. Hieu, who owns a major slaughterhouse in Duc Thuong Commune on the outskirts of Hanoi, is also confident that the meat of poisoned dogs is still safe if they are slaughtered soon and their entrails are not used for food. "But it is rare. Dogs are usually sold to slaughterhouses several hours after being poisoned and the poison has already reached the meat," he said, admitting, in effect, that such toxic meat was still sold. Apart from the possibility of containing poison, dogs are being slaughtered and sold in extremely unhygienic conditions in an unregulated, thriving trade in Vietnam, a recent investigation by Vietweek found. At Hieu's slaughterhouse, dozens of dogs with their throats slit (after being stunned unconscious with a heavy blow to the head) were lying on the wet floor amid entrails mixed with hair, blood and excrement (they defecate while in their death throes). Some impatient traders waiting to collect the meat lent a hand in collecting the excrement-tainted entrails and throwing them into a large bucket of water for washing before being put into a grinder. The ground entrails are then mixed in a bucket of dog blood before being stuffed into dog intestines to make dá»“i a delicacy for many people. All this took place near a large cage containing more than a hundred live dogs that would be slaughtered in the coming days. Hieu's slaughterhouse is among dozens that thrive in Duc Thuong and Duc Giang communes, considered the dog meat capital in northern Vietnam. They supply about five tons of dog meat to Hanoi every day, about 70 percent of the capital city's demand.
3rd August 2012 - Thanh Nien News - Canines are big business in Vietnam and as the demand increases for dog meat (often sold at restaurants as chicken or pork) the supply within the country has reduced. Canines are big business in Vietnam and as the demand increases for dog meat (often sold at restaurants as chicken or pork) the supply within the country has reduced. Enter Thai gangs! To supplement the thieves in Vietnam we now have a bustling new trade between Thailand and Vietnam, with Thai gangs transporting dogs into Vietnam. While it is incomprehensible to Westerners, dog meat is relished in China, South Korea and Vietnam. But the public's view of dogs here is changing. Dogs are now being seen as an integral part of the family and valued as companions. People are risking life and limb to both steal and protect the animals. The law has done nothing to protect the owner's property and it is claimed that the police can do little to stop the criminals on motorbikes snatching the defenseless animals. Although there is no specific law regarding dog-napping in Vietnam, there are fines for theft of property valued at VND2 million or more. But how do you put a value on your pet? Clearly, these animals have much more value than what they can be sold for at the local BBQ restaurant. And the thieves know this very well. Not long ago, my beautiful pet "Lucky" was stolen from my wife when she was taking him for a walk in Phu My Hung. Two men on a motorbike waited for the right moment (as they were parked nearby looking for the right victim), snatched him, pulling his head out of the leash, and sped away. My wife, already in shock, tried to chase them down the street to no avail. She was devastated by the loss. She told me what had happened and we began in earnest the search for our "son." Yes, we call Lucky our son because he is the emotional equivalent to a son or daughter. We spent the day searching every place in Ho Chi Minh City where they might be selling dogs with no luck. The next day, after a night of listening to my wife crying in desperation, we again contacted many known dog suppliers. Later that day, we received a call back from a woman in District 10 who said she knew where the dog was and for a substantial fee (greater than VND2 million) we could be reunited with Lucky. We considered contacting the police and organizing a sting operation, but decided against it for fear of losing Lucky permanently. The woman was so kind that she suggested we also buy another dog for VND1 million to seal the deal. We agreed and went to her location in District 10 and waited only a few minutes when a young man drove up on motorbike with a bag. When we opened the bag our Lucky jumped out with tears in his eyes, and, of course, there were tears in my wife's eyes and mine as well. The poor little guy was afraid to go outside for several days and when he did, he was constantly looking around in fear. Everyone was traumatized. And the kind pet dealer was a bit richer as were the thieves. understand very deeply why people in the North are turning into vigilantes to protect themselves and their pets. I would love to catch one of these thieves red-handed myself he would not be stealing anyone's pet again. In the absence of help from the police, these people must protect themselves from both the loss of the dog and attacks from the thieves. On the other hand, if the thieves injure anyone, including the vigilantes, while committing a crime, they must be punished to the full extent of the law.
28th July 2012 - Chiangrai Times - Dog Trader Caught in Nakhon Phanom, 700 Dogs Rescued - An illicit transnational trader was arrested by a Mekong Riverine Operation Unit in the northeastern province of Nakhon Phanom, rescuing 700 dogs which were bound for Vietnam.
27th July 2012 - Thanh Nien News - Mob violence spirals in dog thieving country while public health officials brace for a possible cholera outbreak Le Hoang Dien and Duong Quang Nhat were driving through a particularly dark stretch of Ba Ria-Vung Tau Province's Chau Doc District when they noticed the beams of flashlights coming up behind them. It was Friday night and they had spent the evening with friends who had given them a bag of corn to take home. They worried, as the lights drew nearer, that they were being pursued by bandits. Further down the road, a group of men surrounded them on motorbikes and demanded that they pull over. It was around 10 p.m. Dien, the 20-year-old deputy director of the Hoang Dien Transport Company, tried to speed away. Eventually, the pursuers managed to force Dien and Nhat, to the side of the road where they revealed themselves to be uniformed members of a local militia. uspected the men of trying to kidnap a dog. They considered Dien's attempt at evasion and the large sack he was carrying as evidence of their culpability. When they discovered only corn in their sack, they instructed the pair to wait while they searched the road for the corpse of a dog. When Nhat and Dien began to protest, the militiamen attacked them, the men say. Angry locals soon joined the fray. After a thorough beating, the two men were transported to the Chau Pha Commune police station where they were held overnight. In the morning, they were released to the Ba Ria General Hospital where doctors treated Nhat for minor injuries and Dien for a broken rib, a broken left kneecap, a broken tooth and multiple head injuries. On Monday, Tan Thanh District Police pledged to investigate the incident. The assault provided the latest example of vigilante violence targeted at dog thieves"”a function, some say of the lawless nature of the dog trade....READ MORE