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Palace Museum Says Goodbye to Forbidden City Celebrity Cat Baidian

The most beloved stray cat of the Forbidden City has suddenly passed away.

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Baidian by pet photographer Arthur Yang @宠物摄影师-克查 / follow on Instagram: roulong

Baidian, the famous red-haired stray cat from the Forbidden City that predicted World Cup winners, has passed away on Monday. Palace Museum staff thanks netizens for their care and support.

The “imperial” stray cat Baidian became an online hit recently when staff from the Palace Museum, housed in the Forbidden City, started posted pictures of him ‘predicting’ World Cup winners.

The cat was the first Forbidden City stray to even get its own Weibo account, which soon gathered more than 17,000 followers.

Unfortunately, Baidian fell ill on Wednesday and had to be taken to the animal hospital. Although Palace staff and the veterinarians were initially hopeful about his recovery, a severe anemia worsened the cat’s condition, that was already weakened due to a heart problem and his advanced age.

One of the last photos taken of Baidian.

Palace Museum staff called out for help on Sunday, as Baidian needed a blood transfusion; they were looking for young, strong, and healthy blood type A cats who could donate.

Despite hundreds of responses, the Baidian Weibo account posted a sad message today, writing: “Thank you for all your help. We’re so sorry – we had to let him go.”

“Thank you all,” Palace staff wrote on Weibo.

Baidian’s passing has moved many people on Weibo, with hundreds of commenters responding to his sudden passing. “I always used to see him around the West gate of the Forbidden City,” one person said: “He would defend the gate and from time to time people would stop and pet him. He would majestically lie down and be stroked (..) Farewell Baidian!”

Baidian by pet photographer Arthur Yang One Shot @宠物摄影师-克查 / follow on Instagram: roulong

“I’m happy I could see you one last time,” another Palace Museum visitor writes, posting a photo she took of Baidian.

“I just started following you on Weibo, and never thought I would see this sad news,” one commenter says. Some people suggest that the Palace Museum staff keeps Baidian’s Weibo account open for other stray cats that live in the imperial palace.

Baidian by pet photographer Arthur Yang @宠物摄影师-克查 / follow on Instagram: roulong

“It is ok,” other people say: “You’ve done all you could for him, now he’s no longer in pain.”

Baidian by pet photographer Arthur Yang One Shot @宠物摄影师-克查 / follow on Instagram: roulong

“There’s no pain in kitty heaven.”

By Manya Koetse

Spotted a mistake or want to add something? Please let us know in comments below or email us.

©2018 Whatsonweibo. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce our content without permission – you can contact us at info@whatsonweibo.com.

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Manya Koetse is the editor-in-chief of www.whatsonweibo.com. She is a writer and consultant (Sinologist, MPhil) on social trends in China, with a focus on social media and digital developments, popular culture, and gender issues. Contact at manya@whatsonweibo.com, or follow on Twitter.

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China Local News

World’s Largest Terminal: Spectacular Photos of Beijing’s New Airport

The city’s new international airport will be the biggest one in the world.

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Its opening is more than a year from now, but Beijing’s new international airport is already a spectacular sight.

Beijing’s new airport, that is expected to open in fall of 2019, is attracting some attention on Chinese social media lately as construction work on the major airport is speeding up.

A 7,200 tons and 404.5-meter-long roof was placed on the airport’s no.1 hangar earlier this week.

The airport is located in southern Beijing in Daxing (大兴区), and is expected to welcome some 72 million travelers per year in the future. The terminal area will cover some 700,000 square meter.

Photo of the upcoming airport posted on Weibo by @永定河孔雀城

According to Sina News, at most 8000 builders are working on the construction site at the same time.

The terminal building was designed by ADPI in collaboration with, amongst other consultants, Zaha Hadid Architects, who are known for their futuristic structures.

The airport is also called the “alien base” (外星人基地) by some netizens due to its extraordinary size and design.

Dozens of photos of the airport construction site are circulating on Weibo.

Photographer Chou Gui (@chougui17) posted a collection of various photos of the upcoming airport on their Weibo account.

Chinese state media propagate Beijing’s Daxing International Airport as being “100% China-made.” Located in the Daxing district of southern Beijing, it will become an important part of the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei city cluster.

You might also like to read: Real-Life Fairy Tale Landscape: Abandoned Fishing Village Houtouwan.

By Manya Koetse

Spotted a mistake or want to add something? Please let us know in comments below or email us.

©2018 Whatsonweibo. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce our content without permission – you can contact us at info@whatsonweibo.com.

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China Local News

Chongqing Man Throws Golden Retriever and Cat from 21st Floor

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A brutal case of pet killing has shocked Chinese social media users this week. On September 6, a man from the Shapingba district of Chongqing threw his golden retriever and a pregnant cat from the 21st floor of an apartment building. Both animals died.

Various Chinese media report that the man supposedly committed the cruel act after learning his wife was pregnant and not wanting her to keep pets in the house while expecting. After an argument with his wife, he allegedly threw the pets out of the window.

Shocked neighbors told reporters that the incident occurred around five o’clock on Thursday, when they heard a loud thump and found the animals on the pavement.

Some neighbours recognized the animals, as their own dog would play with the golden retriever. They called the pet owner, who said he no longer wanted anything to do with the dog and the cat. The neighbors, some crying, later gave the dog and cat a respectful burial.

On Weibo, the hashtag “Man Throws Dog and Cat from 21st Floor” (#男子21楼扔下一猫一狗#) was viewed almost three million times.

Animal cruelty often becomes a topic of debate on Weibo. One of the biggest social media trending cases of animal abuse of the past years is that of the dog Lion, who went missing in December of 2017 and was found by a woman named He Hengli who then blackmailed the dog’s owner over its release.

When the ‘hostage negotiations’ reached a deadlock, the dog’s owner finally went to He’s apartment to fetch her dog together with police offers and reporters. While they knocked the door, Lion was thrown to his death from He’s sixth story apartment.

The story of ‘Lion,’ who was killed by the person who held him ‘hostage’, went viral on Weibo in January 2018.

As in many cases in which animal cruelty has been exposed on social media, Lion’s killer became a target of the so-called ‘human flesh search engine,’ with people leaking her personal information online and threatening her at her workplace and home.

Such cases have previously even led to mob justice, with people dragging abusers out of their homes and beating them.

People often resort to this kind of ‘jungle justice’ because China currently has no laws preventing animal abuse. The voices calling for legal protection of animals in China have gotten louder over the past years.

“I just cannot understand these kinds of people’s way of thinking,” one commenter said: “They now throw a dog, what will they throw next time?”

“[If you no longer want your pets], you could just give them away, instead of cruelly throwing them to their death. Also – if someone would’ve walked there, they might have died, too,” others wrote.

Some write: “If someone mistreats an animal it’s a clear sign they’re abnormal maniacs,” with many others worrying about the future child of the pet killer: “He’s surely not fit to be a father.”

By Manya Koetse

Spotted a mistake or want to add something? Please let us know in comments below or email us.

©2018 Whatsonweibo. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce our content without permission – you can contact us at info@whatsonweibo.com.

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What’s on Weibo provides social, cultural & historical insights into an ever-changing China. What’s on Weibo sheds light on China’s digital media landscape and brings the story behind the hashtag. This independent news site is managed by sinologist Manya Koetse. Contact info@whatsonweibo.com. ©2014-2018

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