Pets in China

So my blog is back on track - Talking about China as I should be doing.

The cultural differences between China and Europe are huge and I suspect equally baffling to each side. For instance, the Chinese think nothing of eating turtles that they have brought in the supermarket (live at the time of purchase) and think we are mad for deep frying our fish in breadcrumbs or eating Chicken breasts when you have thighs and legs up for grabs.

Pets are another interesting area. China is a developing country and despite the growth that it has been experiencing, the cultural "norms" that we have in the West will, I suspect take longer to develop than the economy.

This all starts from the research that Caz and I have been doing at the dog rescue center where we want to adopt a stray dog.

Its very sad to see Alsatians and other dogs that have been brought as a puppy then abandoned on the street, simply because they grow to large (of course I am not suggesting that this does not happen in the UK) but in China it is completely down to a lack of understanding to what a pet is.

People in large cites will typically never have had a pet and may not know anyone who has a pet dog. Now that the economy is booming, people have more and more disposable income and pets have become one of the items people have to "keep up with the Chans" as I call it.

The shame is that often the pet stores seem to have very poor education. I was in a pet store in HK and the sales assistant was trying to sell me two puppies that would grow to a size that is far to big for most HK flats.

And then you have th issue that the dogs sold are not de-sexed. This of course means puppies and a problem for people of what to do with them. In China that means dumping in the street or in the river (and sadly often it is the latter).

The government plans to offer $200 for de-sexing dogs, but I am not sure that this is the way to solve the problem.

But the upside is that one stray/unwanted dog is going to have a home. The downside is that he/she should not have been in this situation.

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