Residents of Hefei’s Feixi County in Anhui were horrified when they discovered that hundreds of dog pelts were left to dry beneath a local bridge.
Normally a favorite location for locals to walk or go running at night, residents were understandably disturbed when they first noticed the gruesome spectacle, but perhaps even more frightening was that for just over one month residents could only watch in horror as the number of pelts increased day by day.
By the time the story broke on national Chinese media, there were reportedly somewhere between 500 to 600 pelts spread-eagle out under the bridge. Residents say that they seldom walk by this place anymore out of fear, especially at night.
“One or two pelts is one thing, but this many is something else entirely,” said one resident. “It has gotten so bad that children start crying out of fear if they wander by.”
After journalists called the story in, officials rushed over and an investigation was opened. Officials speculate that someone may have been drying the skins out in preparation to produce leather, and although the skins do not seem rotten, it will take time to tell if the flow of blood from the skins into the river will have any lasting adverse affects on the water quality of the river.
China, like many of its neighbors, has had a somewhat checkered past when it comes to perceptions and treatment of man’s best friend in the modern era. Although more and more Chinese are coming around to the idea that dogs are best seen as companions and not as food, many defiantly cling to the idea that the only good dog is one served on a plate.
It’s not all water under this bridge:
By Stanley Yu
[Images via NetEase]