Since September, the animal-rights group Animals Asia has distributed almost 300 anti-dog and cat meat fliers throughout 14 Chinese cities, in train stations, bus stations and elevators. Despite plenty of positive feedback, some angry Chinese citizens claim tradition demands that one of the ads be changed or removed.
In some parts of the country, dogs and cats still count as food sources, and there have been reports of domestic animals stolen and sent to the slaughter.
The ads attracted a lot of attention on Weibo, China’s version of Twitter, and the versions translated into English went viral last month.
But because some feel that eating the animals is a tradition, many people in northeast China found the ads offensive.
Here’s one of the ads. Note the chopsticks:
And this one, saying the meal on your plate could have once been a loyal guardian, especially riled up commuters in Shenyang’s metro station:
Hong Kong’s English newspaper the South China Morning Post reported that “locals took exception to the use of the word baoan (security guard) to describe guard dogs, saying it was offensive to actual security guards.”
Animals Asia made the revision to keep the poster up, but Carrot Chen, the organisation’s cat and dog welfare deputy manager, said the reason was foolish. “They couldn’t find any real reason to complain, so they just used this word as an excuse,” she said.
The animal rights group thinks the campaign has been a huge success, and is glad it is offending some people:
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