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Help stop the development of companion-animal breeding centre in Korea
The Korean government plans to develop a “companion-animal breeding centre” in Busan City, South Korea, to breed dogs and encourage dog ownership.
While acknowledging dogs and cats play a very important role within society as companion animals, we wish to prevent the many abuses and neglect that result from the unregulated breeding and sale of dogs and irresponsible dog ownership. Animals Asia has a number of concerns and recommendations regarding dog-breeding. Please see here for more:
We are particularly opposed to the development and operation of “puppy farms”, where dogs are bred in appalling conditions purely for profit with a total disregard for the health and welfare of both the adult dogs and puppies. Adult bitches are kept in small pens with little or no access to daylight, no social contact with other dogs or humans and no space to exercise or play. They are bred continuously until they become too old and are then discarded.
Puppies bred under such intensive conditions often suffer from genetic abnormalities and other health-related issues. Puppies are frequently removed from their mothers when they are too young, leading to further health and behavioural issues. Puppies bred in such intensive conditions are often sold through newspaper ads, via the internet, at pet shops or in pet superstores. Irresponsible owners abandon these dogs to live lives of abuse and neglect on the streets.
The general promotion of purebred dogs and the desire to breed animals for specific physical and behavioural traits by many dog breeders has lead to significant health and welfare problems in many breeds. The emphasis on pure breeds can also cause or exacerbate disrespect for mixed-breed animals within a community.
Animals Asia has written to the Korean government to protest against this development and sent copies of our letter to the Agricultural Technology Centre in Kijang-kun, Busan, which is developing the breeding facility – a copy of the letter is below.
What you can do
Animals Asia never underestimates the power of the written word, and while a single letter or email may not seem like much, the collective expression of many people's opinions can help bring about real change.
I urge you to do all you can to encourage the Korean government to abandon plans to develop a dog-breeding centre in Busan. Please write a polite letter to your Korean Ambassador and send it to the main embassy address in your country. Embassy addresses can be found here:
Never underestimate the power of letters. We encourage you to send a letter to the relevant government or organisation concerned, from your own email address. You can copy and paste the letter below or write a letter with your own message. We believe that sending it from your personal account has a greater impact on the recipient than receiving multiple emails sent through our website.
We need your help to improve the lives of all animals worldwide. Writing a letter on a specific welfare issue is a valuable way you can support our campaigns. Please sign up to become a member of our Animals Asia Action team to receive email alerts on the latest action that we need you to participate in.
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Minister For Food, Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries
Republic of Korea
Dear Mr. Chang,Tae-pyung
Animal protection organisations in Korea have brought to our attention the development of a Companion Animal Breeding Centre by the Agriculture and Technology Centre of Busan.
While we acknowledge dogs and cats play a very important role within society as companion animals we wish to prevent the many abuses and neglect which result from the unregulated breeding and sale of dogs and irresponsible dog ownership.
Animals Asia is particularly opposed to the development and operation of large scale breeding operations where dogs are often bred in appalling conditions purely for profit with a total disregard for the health and welfare of both the adult dogs and puppies.
We request that plans for the development of a breeding centre are abolished and the government concentrate upon developing legislation aimed at preventing dog overpopulation and abandonment.
With specific regard to the breeding, sale and keeping of dogs, Animals Asia recommend the Korean government work in partnership with animal protection organisations to:
Encourage adoption of homeless animals over the purchasing of puppies from breeders.
Develop regulations within the Animal Welfare Act requiring:
all puppies to be indelibly identified before sale.
an obligation on any person breeding dogs to have regard for the health and welfare of both the parents and the offspring
the development of a regulatory body to have regard for the health and welfare of the dogs and the need to avoid breed specific health problems.
the creation of offences with regards to these measures.
Develop codes of practice and minimum standards for breeders and breeding establishments to:
ensure the health and welfare of both parents and offspring.
ensure all breeders test for breed specific disorders and protect the health and welfare of puppies
ensure appropriate socialization of puppies.
regulate the mechanisms for the sale of puppies.
Implement a licensing system for breeders of all dogs and cats with subsequent audits and inspections. All licensed breeding premises should be required to maintain detailed records and these should be inspected to ensure that breed-appropriate pre-mating tests and screening programmes have been carried out and appropriate decisions taken based on the results.
Develop codes of practice for dog and cat owners to ensure the welfare of all dogs and cats based upon their needs to be:
provided with a suitable environment to live in
provided with a suitable and healthy diet
able to express normal behaviour
housed with, or apart from other animals dependent upon the circumstances of individual animals
protected from pain, suffering, injury and disease.
Develop a code of practice for animals in pet shops to include provisions for housing, feeding, watering, record keeping, health care, staffing and training, environmental conditions, handling and species-specific requirements
In addition Animals Asia recommends the regional authorities in Korea, in association with the local community, veterinary services and NGO participation, execute the following:
Adopt a comprehensive humane dog population management strategy based upon education of responsible dog ownership, legislation, registration, neutering, and vaccination.
Develop appropriate laws focusing on the responsibility of the dog’s owner (including generic, non-breed-specific dangerous-dog laws), penalties for irresponsible owners, and community education in responsible dog ownership as the most effective means of minimizing problems associated with aggressive behaviour, animal abandonment and the transmission of communicable diseases.
Establish dog parks (designated areas within parks) for dog owners to exercise dogs off leash
Develop registration, neutering and vaccination centres to encourage dog owners to register, neuter and vaccinate their dogs against communicable diseases
Develop a fee-classification system to generate greater participation to include
Reduced fee for low-income dog owners
Reduced fee for de-sexed dogs.
Reduced fee for dogs owned by elderly people.
Fee-exemption for dogs registered as guide dogs for the blind, hearing dogs for the deaf, or other dogs that perform a service for people in need.
Reduced fee if dog-owners pay for more than one year of registration.
Fee for all other dogs that do not meet the above criteria.
Reduced fee for dog owners enrolled on responsible dog ownership initiatives
Develop and finance holding centres and re-homing facilities for lost, abandoned and homeless dogs and cats. The development of such an establishment should follow international guidance on design and management of animal shelters.
Development of a management plan that ensures the welfare of the animals, the development of a high success rate of re-homing, identification and management of curable diseases and prevention of spread within the local population, and high humane standards of euthanasia for dogs with incurable illnesses, suffering from untreatable injuries or major behavioural problems that prevent them being re-homed.
Animals Asia calls upon the Korean Government to accept within the law that dog and cat population management is a government responsibility, working in partnership with the community, veterinary services and NGO’s to adopt a comprehensive humane dog population management strategy which encourages responsible dog ownership, legislation to regulate dog breeding, registration, neutering, the development of holding and re-homing centres, and vaccination
Animals Asia calls upon the Korean government to abandon plans to develop a Companion Animal Breeding Centre and focus upon appropriate legislation aimed at responsible pet ownership and reducing the number of unwanted dogs and cats.
We would of course be pleased to offer help and information to facilitate suggestions contained in this letter and look forward to discussing this with the relevant directors and authorities at their earliest convenience.