HUNTINGTON, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — A long journey has come to a happy end for a group of dogs that arrived on Long Island today — their lives saved by international rescue groups moving dogs from slaughter houses in Korea to loving homes.
It’s a whole new world for the ten dogs who arrived Monday, rescued from certain death in the meat markets of South Korea.
“Over there they are not seen as pets,” Little Shelter CEO David Ceely tells CBS2’s Carolyn Gusoff. “It’s sort of like a commodity or food, there is no emotional attachment that we have here in America.”
But now, there’s plenty of emotional attachment in Long Island as they were welcomed by Little Shelter in Huntington, their hopeless lives now turned around.
The canines were plucked from Korean warehouses and farms where animal welfare groups say they were being bred for human consumption. The practice goes back centuries in parts of Asia, where dog meat is considered a delicacy and even medicinal.
The annual Dog Eating Festival in China has prompted international outrage over inhumane slaughtering practices.
Rescuers say they understand the cultural differences at play.
“We are not changing the world,” Little Shelter Special Programs Manager Arleen Leone says, “but if we have the opportunity to step in to help out and get some of them out, that’s what we want to do.”
Little Shelter spent $4,000 to fly the dogs from Seoul to the United States. Neutered with vaccinations, the ten dogs — ranging in age from six months to three years — will now be quarantined while they’re fully screened and vetted to be suburban backyard ready.
The dogs will be put up for adoption and placed in loving homes in about two weeks.
The Toronto based group Free Korean Dogs teamed up with Little Shelter for this particular rescue. The group says their goal is to end the Korean dog meat trade.