Cartoon encouraging responsible companion animal guardianship watched over 35,000 times in a day.

21 February 2020

Animals Asia has released a new film called “Waiting for The Game to End” to encourage empathy and responsible companion animal guardianship. Within a day of its release online it was watched over 35,000 times on Chinese social media networks Weibo and Wechat. The cartoon tells a sad story of an adorable dog abandoned by his guardian. He is convinced that he’s just playing a game of “hide-and-seek” and that his guardian and best friend will come to pick him up soon….

The film is especially timely as there have been many stories of cats and dogs left stranded in empty apartments due to the CoVid19 coronavirus crisis. In many cases the animals’ guardians are simply unable to return to their homes due to travel and quarantine restrictions. In some cases misinformation has spread about domestic animals’ ability to transmit the virus. 

Abandoned dog imagines his owner returning to take him off into the sunset.

In addition to creating and sharing the animated film, Animals Asia has been helping to combat misinformation by widely sharing the World Health Organisation’s advice which says: “there is no evidence that companion animals/pets such as dogs or cats can be infected with the new coronavirus.”

World Health Organisation guidance on coronavirus

On the ground Animals Asia has been providing practical support to local organisations who are organising volunteers to ensure the safety of companion animals who have no one to look after them, including stray dogs and cats.

Many local groups are working together with the help of mainstream media and celebrities providing a voice for animals and many companies are coming on board to offer their support.

Heroic local groups that are exhibiting incredible  #BraveryInAction include Wuhan Small Animal Protection Association (SAPA), Zhejiang SAPA, Hefei SAPA, Ping’an Afu, Xi’an SAPA, Chongqing SAPA, Nanchang SAPA and more!

China’s largest online shopping platform Taobao has collected 10 tons of dog food to support stray animal groups in the country and Liushi Town in east China’s Zhejiang Province has opened a hotline for citizens who need help for their stay-at-home animals. Volunteer teams have been set up, not only to help the stay-at-home animals whose guardian’s can’t reach them, but also to provide food and water for stray animals, to help them survive.

Popular media outlets like People’s Daily and CCTV as well as celebrities such Han Hong, Yao Chen and Li Yifeng posted on Chinese social media network Weibo to speak up for the people and animals impacted by the crisis. They helped to spread information and dispel myth as well as encouraging people not to hurt and abandon companion animals.

According to Wuhan Small Animal Protection Association they have helped in excess of 5,000 companion animals and received nearly nine tons of cat and dog food from cat and dog food companies free of charge, as well as other items such as disinfection products and cat litter. 

Volunteers help look after companion animals during the corona outbreak

Suki Deng Animals Asia’s Cat and Dog Welfare Senior Manager said:
“In spite of the danger of this outbreak, individuals, organisations, companies and government officials have been working overtime together to make sure that companion animals are protected from harm as well as humans. The love that people have shown towards cats and dogs during this difficult time has been a beacon of hope and love. I’d like to pay special tribute to all of the amazing local organisations and volunteers who are doing heroic work every single day.”

As reported earlier Animals Asia has also purchased 5,000 kilos (5 tons) of dog food for the stranded pets of Wuhan and continues to provide support to cat and dog shelters around the country. The film “Waiting for The Game to End” will also be screened on advertising screens in Chengdu Metro stations throughout the coming month.

Cartoon of abandoned dog from "Waiting for the Game to End"

As ever Animals Asia is working hard forging partnership with other organisations, companies and authorities to improve the lives of vulnerable animals. The courage and tenacity of everyone engaged in this work in the face of this health emergency is truly inspiring. We are doing everything we can to support them and we hope you will stand with them too, until the crisis ends.