China eliminating all dogs in Hanzhong city

In response to eight cases of human rabies, the authorities in Hanzhong City, in China’s northwest Shaanxi Province, have started the widespread killing of dogs in order to make the city a dog-free zone. Thousands of stray and owned dogs are being killed by literally beating them to death.


In some areas, local officials notified dog owners that they needed to kill their dogs on the 20th or 21st of May. If they didn’t, the police would kill the dogs and the owner would need to pay $100 chinese yuan (around USD 15) as a destroying fee.

More than 20,000 dogs have already been killed over the last two and a half months. And the killing continues indiscriminately, whether vaccinated pet dogs or stray dogs – more photos can be found here.

Local animal welfare groups are working desperately to stop further killing. Meanwhile, ACTAsia is presenting a document  on ‘A Case for Humane Rabies Control in China’ to the Chinese authorities. We are urging them to use scientific measures for rabies control (see OIE & WHO statements) and to stop the inhumane culling of all dogs in Hanzhong area. International support would be of great help to prevent the killing of more animals in extremely cruel ways.

Please write to the following authorities urgently and ask them courteously to stop this inhumane killing. The following points can be included in your email:

  • It has been proven that the indiscriminate mass killing of dogs does not reduce the incidence of rabies, and does not reduce stray dog populations over the longer term.
  • The only effective way of eliminating rabies in dogs is through a mass vaccination programme with support from different levels of society
  • Humane dog control programmes need to be started immediately

President Hu Jintao

E-mail: [email protected], [email protected]

Minister of Agriculture, Mr. Sun Chenjia E-mail: [email protected]

Department of Agriculture of Shaanxi Province, Animal Husbandry and Veterinary Bureau  Email: [email protected]

Health Department of Shaanxi Province E-mail: [email protected]

Shaanxi Provincial Health Authority E-mail: [email protected]

People’s government of Hangzhong City E-mail: [email protected]

If you could copy us at [email protected] we would really appreciate it. Thank you for your efforts for the animals.