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“Where is the Law?” – Heartbreaking Video of Girl Holding Killed Dog Raises Questions

A heartbreaking video showing a weeping girl holding her killed dog has gone viral on Chinese social media, where netizens cry out for a rapid implementation of animal welfare legislation in China.

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A heartbreaking video showing a weeping girl holding her killed dog has gone viral on Chinese social media, where netizens cry out for a rapid implementation of animal welfare legislation in China.

One young girl from the city of Qujing in Yunnan was heartbroken in December of 2016 when her pet dog was killed by a neighborhood guard with an air gun.

In a video that went viral on Chinese media on January 4/5, the girl is seen holding the dead body of her pet, crying: “Wake up, wake up Kuai Kuai, wake up now.”

The dog reportedly died instantly when it was hit in the heart by a bullet of the air pistol that was in the possession of a neighborhood guard.

The incident was reported by Chinese media platform Pear Video (see video below), among other media.

This video shows the girl crying over her dead dog Kuai Kuai, asking him to wake up. The captions in the screen explain that the dog’s heart was penetrated by an air gun bullet, which is illegal, and that the guard responsible for this was detained for 6 days. It also shows footage of the dog 1 year ago when the girl saved him after a car accident and how he recuperated afterwards.

“Open your eyes, look at me,” the girl says: “It’s me, your sister.”

A year before this fatal incident, the dog had suffered a major car accident and was then saved by the girl and brought to an animal hospital to receive medical care. The Pear Video clip shows that the dog had fully recuperated from his accident- making his sudden death all the more painful for the girl and her mother.

healthydog

The neighborhood guard, whose name has now been exposed on Chinese social media, has reportedly been detained and released after a 6-day sentence for the illegal possession of a weapon. The air gun has been confiscated.

The video received over 23.000 comments and was shared 17.300 times within 24 hours, become a top trending topic on Chinese social media.

The alleged mother of the girl in the video, nicknamed Houmitao (@
猴迷桃16257) has come forward on Sina Weibo on January 5th in a short post, in which she talks about the dog Kuai Kuai:

“This incident has really hurt me and my young child,” she writes: “This is like a scar that will never heal.”

She also expresses her thanks for all the support and makes it clear that by now she has resolved the issue with the local guard and asks people to stop disturbing him and his family.

“I want to thank you all for condemning the person who killed the innocent Kuai Kuai. She will thank you from heaven, knowing that so many people care for her would make her very happy.”

Houmitao also calls for the official launch of a Chinese law to protect animals:

“I strongly urge the Chinese government to implement an Animal Protection Act as soon as possible. Are civilized countries so cruel to animals, killing cats and dogs? I strongly advocate the implementation of severe punishment for those involved in the black market of dog trading. These are monstrous crimes!”

China currently has no laws against animal cruelty. Although officials have been working on the introduction of an animal protection law in China since 2006, it has not been officially implemented.

Thousands of people on Weibo have commented on the killing of Kuai Kuai, some saying: “This is not just killing a dog, this is killing a little girl’s friend.” Others compare pet dogs to members of the family. “You will understand this if you own a dog yourself,” one person says.

The motives of the security guard for killing the dog are unknown. Some netizens who say they know him call him a renowned “neighbourhood bully.”

Many netizens are also upset over the fact that owning a weapon seemingly has no serious consequences.

“If an old lady sets up an illegal booth she is sentenced to three years, if a guard kills a dog he is sentenced to six days,” one Weibo user says: “I usually don’t speak about politics on Weibo – I am afraid to do in fear to be reprimanded for it. But I cannot constrain myself this time. How is it possible that there is more severe punishment for setting up a vendor stall than for owning a gun, even if it is a toy gun?”

“These kinds of people are like society’s tumors,” another commenter wrote: “Today they kill a dog. Tomorrow they might kill a human.”

– By Manya Koetse
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©2016 Whatsonweibo. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce our content without permission – you can contact us at info@whatsonweibo.com.

Manya Koetse is the founder and editor-in-chief of whatsonweibo.com. She is a writer, public speaker, and researcher (Sinologist, MPhil) on social trends, digital developments, and new media in an ever-changing China, with a focus on Chinese society, pop culture, and gender issues. She shares her love for hotpot on hotpotambassador.com. Contact at manya@whatsonweibo.com, or follow on Twitter.

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China Animals

‘Welcome Home, Molly’ – Chinese Zoo Elephant Returns to Kunming after Online Protest

One small step for animal protection in China, one giant leap for Molly the elephant.

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Following online protest and the efforts of animal activists, Molly has returned to the Kunming Zoo where she was born and where mother elephant Mopo is.

The little elephant named Molly is a big topic of discussion on Chinese social media recently.

The popular Asian elephant, born in the Kunming Zoo in 2016, was separated from her mother at the age of two in April of 2018. Molly was then transferred from Kunming Zoo to Qinyang, Jiaozuo (Henan), in exchange for another elephant. Over the past few years, fans of Molly started voicing their concerns online as the elephant was trained to do tricks and performances and to carry around tourists on her back at the Qinyang Swan Lake Ecological Garden (沁阳天鹅湖生态园), the Qinyang Hesheng Forest Zoo (沁阳和生森林动物园), the Jiaozuo Forestry Zoo (焦作森林动物园), and the Zhoukou Safari Park (周口野生动物世界).

Since the summer of 2021, more people started speaking out for Molly’s welfare when they spotted the elephant chained up and seemingly unhappy, forced to do handstands or play harmonica, with Molly’s handlers using iron hooks to coerce her into performing.

Earlier this month, Molly became a big topic on Chinese social media again due to various big accounts on Xiaohongshu and Weibo posting about the ‘Save Molly’ campaign and calling for an elephant performance ban in China (read more).

Although zookeepers denied any animal abuse and previously stated that the elephant is kept in good living conditions and that animal performances are no longer taking place, Molly’s story saw an unexpected turn this week. Thanks to the efforts of online netizens, Molly fans, and animal welfare activists, Molly was removed from Qinyang.

A popular edited image of Molly that has been shared a lot online.

On May 15, the Henan Forestry Bureau – which regulates the holding of all exotic species, including those in city zoos – announced that Molly would return to Kunming in order to provide “better living circumstances” for the elephant. A day later, on Monday, Molly left Qinyang and returned to the Kunming Zoo where she was born. In Kunming, Molly will first receive a thorough health check during the observation period.

Official announcement regarding Molly by the Henan Forestry Administration.

Many online commenters were happy to see Molly returning home. “Finally! This is great news,” many wrote, with others saying: “Please be good to her” and “Finally, after four years of hardship, Molly will be reunited with her mother.”

Besides regular Weibo accounts celebrating Molly’s return to Kunming, various Chinese state media accounts and official accounts (e.g. the Liaocheng Communist Youth League) also posted about Molly’s case and wished her a warm welcome and good wishes. One Weibo post on the matter by China News received over 76,000 likes on Monday.

Although many view the effective online ‘Save Molly’ campaign as an important milestone for animal welfare in China, some animal activists remind others that there are still other elephants in Chinese zoos who need help and better wildlife protection laws. Among them are the elephant Kamuli (卡目里) and two others who are still left in Qinyang.

For years, animal welfare activists in China and in other countries have been calling for Chinese animal protection laws. China does have wildlife protection laws, but they are often conflicting and do not apply to pets and there is no clear anti-animal abuse law.

“I’ll continue to follow this. What are the next arrangements? What is the plan for Molly and the other elephants? How will you guarantee a safe and proper living environment?”

Another Weibo user writes: “This is just a first step, there is much more to be done.”

To follow more updates regarding Molly, check out Twitter user ‘Diving Paddler’ here. We thank them for their contributions to this article.

To read more about zoos and wildlife parks causing online commotion in China, check our articles here.

By Manya Koetse

References (other sources linked to within text)

Arcus Foundation (Ed.). 2021. State of the Apes: Killing, Capture, Trade and Ape Conservation. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

China Daily. 2012. “Animal Rights Groups Seek Performance Ban.” China Daily, April 16 http://www.china.org.cn/environment/2012-04/16/content_25152066.htm [Accessed May 1 2022].

Li, Peter J. 2021. Animal Welfare in China: Culture, Politics and Crisis. Sydney: Sydney University Press.

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China and Covid19

Huizhou Pet Dog Beaten to Death by Health Workers while Owners Are in Quarantine

First in Shangrao, now in Huizhou.

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Last November, Chinese social media users were outraged after anti-epidemic workers in Shangrao killed a pet dog while its owner was undergoing quarantine at a nearby hotel. This week, a similar incident has again sparked outrage on Weibo.

On March 2nd, a Samoyed dog was beaten to death by anti-epidemic workers in Huizhou, Guangdong Province. Home security footage of the incident was shared by the dog’s owner (有只雪球), who wrote about it on Weibo on March 4th. Her post was shared over 100,000 times on Saturday afternoon.

The 3-year-old dog named Snowball was left at home while its owners were quarantined elsewhere in Huizhou. The female owner’s boyfriend was confirmed to have Covid-19 and was sent to a designated hospital on March 2nd, while the woman also needed to quarantine due to being a close contact.

That very same day, two epidemic prevention staff members entered the house to disinfect it. The dog owner shared screenshots of a WeChat conversation with the health workers, in which she told them in which room the dog was staying and also told them he was harmless and did not bite. The conversation suggests that the owner was under the assumption that the dog would just be tested for Covid19.

But much to the horror of the owners, their home security camera system allowed them to see how workers used a long stick to hit the dog, and how they continued to beat the dog to death. A video of the incident was also posted on Twitter by @realsexycyborg (warning, viewer discretion is advised, distressing footage and sound).

On March 5th, the official Weibo account of the Huizhou Propaganda Department released a statement on the incident, confirming that the incident had indeed occurred and apologizing for it.

Although the statement said the anti-epidemic workers used a “cruel manner” to kill the dog, it also said that this large dog had been exposed to Covid19 for a prolonged period through its owner and that there allegedly was a high chance that the dog also had caught the Covid19 virus.

The statement further said that the health workers in question have been suspended from their duties and that authorities have contacted the dog’s owners and apologized to them.

Many people on Weibo expressed anger and disbelief that such an incident had occurred again: “This epidemic has been going on for several years, why does this keep happening? First Shangrao, now Huizuo. It’s heartbreaking.”

“Snowball was so scared. I couldn’t breathe when clicking on the video, and Paipai [pet dog] immediately scurried to me with his tail down when he heard the video, dogs can empathize with other dogs, Paipai could hear that Snowball was in danger.”

Other commenters also claimed that more dogs were recently killed by health workers. Guangdong province recently saw a spike in Covid-19 cases, with virtually all cases originating from neighboring Hong Kong.

Some Weibo users pleaded for Chinese laws to prohibit the mistreatment of animals. For many years, animal welfare activists have been calling for better legal protection of animals in China. China currently has no laws preventing animal abuse but over the past few years, the voices calling for the legal protection of animals in China have become louder – in 2020, state media outlet CCTV also called for animal protection laws.

Online anger was further fuelled when hashtag pages relating to this incident were taken offline on Weibo, with the topic being left out of the top trending topics and hot search lists. The Huizhou authorities closed the comment sections underneath their statement.

“What? You’re clamping down on this topic now? Do you think we’re idiots?”, one Weibo user wrote. Another person said “It’s fine if this gets deleted. For communism, your dog is my dog, you beat my death to death, just apologize and it’s ok.”

Another person wrote: “As a Huizhou resident and a pet lover, I really feel horrible about this. Epidemic prevention is important, but it should protect life, not harm life. The loss of moral preventive measures and the indifferent attitude in which this incident was handled afterward is really a disgrace to Huizhou!”

By Manya Koetse

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©2022 Whatsonweibo. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce our content without permission – you can contact us at info@whatsonweibo.com.

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