An appetite for animal rights: Kensington shelter rescues South Korean canines destined to become cuisine

Spared: Sean Casey, center left, and Gina Lori, center right, welcomed four Argentinian mastiffs to Casey’s Kensington shelter on Friday, where the pups that were saved from certain death at foreign meat farms will recuperate before finding forever homes in Brooklyn.
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It’s taking puppies off the menu.

A Kensington animal rescue is saving dogs destined for South Korean dinner tables by taking in pups rescued from foreign meat farms and finding safe homes for them in Brooklyn, according to its owner, who blasted the Asian country’s canine-cuisine business.

“It is a brutal industry,” said Sean Casey, who owns Sean Casey Animal Rescue at 153 E. Third St. “The meat industry in general can be pretty brutal, and when you add that it’s companion animals, they’re definitely in our hearts.”

The shelter welcomed six dogs from the Asian country on Friday and Saturday, the latest of about a dozen to arrive since it started rescuing them last month.

Thousands of South Korean slaughterhouses butcher the animals annually. In 2016, 240,000 pooches were killed according to a report in the Guardian, but some estimates put the number of deaths closer to 2 million each year.

Man’s best friend is served in a variety of dishes, including the popular Bosintang, a dog-meat soup that is said to enhance virility and cure other ailments, according to a South Korean native and founder of a Queens-based Korean-dog rescue.

The country’s meat farms are similar to American puppy mills and poultry plants, where animals are stuffed into cramped, dark cages and brood hounds birth litter after litter of pups destined for a brutal death, she said. The dogs are intentionally tortured before they are slaughtered in order for them to produce adrenaline, which is said to enhance their meat’s curative properties.

“It’s important to rescue these dogs because of the torture that’s involved in the process of slaughtering them,” said Gina Lori, owner of Korean K9 Rescue. “The people who consume dog meat and the butchers who kill the dogs believe that the more the dog suffers, and the more the dog is tortured, the higher the adrenaline level in the meat that’s produced.”

But not all South Koreans eat dog meat regularly, and there are many activist groups in the country dedicated to eliminating the industry and saving its victims.

Lori’s group works with those foreign rescue organizations, which recover dogs destined for meat farms, and foots the bill to fly them to the United States, where the pooches are placed with foster families until permanent homes are found.

Korean K9 Rescue’s foster network is limited, however, so its founder teamed up with Casey’s shelter, which has room to host about a dozen Asian hounds — in addition to many local mutts — until they can be adopted.

Slaughterhouses trade in breeds that include “everything from mastiffs to Pomeranians,” Lori said, although most of her group’s rescues are Jindos, a small, handsome, good-natured Korean variety that fit perfectly in most Brooklyn abodes.

“They’re not just great dogs, they’re great for New York City apartments,” said Lori. “They’re under 30 pounds, they’re sweet, and they make great companions.”

Anyone interested in adopting a rescued South Korean dog can visit Sean Casey Animal Rescue (153 E. Third St. near Fort Hamilton Parkway in Kensington, for more information.

Reach reporter Colin Mixson at or by calling (718) 260-4505.
Updated 5:55 pm, July 9, 2018
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Reasonable discourse

Matt from Greenpoint says:
There are enough dogs in shelters already. Importing more from Asia seems like a bad, and wasteful, idea. NYC in particular does not need more dogs. Nor are they stopping dog from being eaten. It all sounds like some dumb attention seeking, virtue signaling nonsense.
Sept. 5, 2017, 11:10 am
Rufus Leaking from BH says:
Don't play with your food.
Sept. 5, 2017, 11:49 am
Facts First from NYC says:
Hey Matt, you ever see what a dog farm looks like in Korea? Or the torture involved when they slaughter them!

Also your facts are off, NYC has such a huge demand for dogs that NY shelters take them from the south as well as internationally. When the demand stops and people STOP buying dogs from puppy mills then amazing rescues like Sean Casey can stop asking people to pay attention. Until then educate yourself
Sept. 5, 2017, 1:11 pm
SCR from Realityville says:
It's a bit ethnocentric of us to condemn to eating of meat from dogs by South Koreans,or for this matter,consumpteen of dogs;by the vastly larger mainland China populations. We in the"West",know that it is absolutely wrong,to eat,such loved creatures. However,their are large areas of hugely populated India,in which cows;are considered Sacred-and permitted to roam freely. Enjoy your roast beef,for tonight's dinner. And according to both Islamic and Jewish law,consumption of the swine(the pig),is taboo. There are even many parts of the Middle East,in which the mere presence of dogs,are considered"ritually unclean";to be avoided by humankinds. There is more than one of view,about what is and what is NOT fit for human consumption on planet Earth.
Sept. 5, 2017, 2:43 pm
Rufus Leaking from BH says:
Hot Dog!
Sept. 5, 2017, 4:30 pm
Venus from Veganville says:
How about this cultural reality SCR - people, cultures, ideas, planets can change, its very generational AND just look at history in every country/religion - paradigms have shifted and the universe has evolved, third world countries after a wars in Asia have become technically proficient. Nothing wrong with evolving. GO VEGAN.
Sept. 5, 2017, 5:30 pm
Johnny Carson from Omaha, Nebraska says:
Where is Ed McMahon when you need him?
Sept. 5, 2017, 11:56 pm
GFYS from The bottom of my heart says:
the reason my neighbors dog bite me is because i tried to f#ck him and was licking his balls.
Sept. 6, 2017, 8:54 am
K from ArKady says:
Hey, it's a dog eat dog world out there, AMIRITE?
Sept. 6, 2017, 6:02 pm
B'wanda from Flatbush says:
Asians aren't the only ones who eat dogs - you RACISTS! Black people and muslims do too! Back in Jamaica my family loved nothing more than HOT DOGS! If you don't finish we put it in a DOGGY BAG! And then for desert hush PUPPIES!
Sept. 8, 2017, 11:34 am

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