The deadline is approaching fast for Peking’s dog-lovers who have been told by the authorities to get rid of their pets by this coming thursday or the animals will be killed.
The Peking government has decided that Peking will in future be a no-dog city — even the famous Pekinese dogs, once the playthings of the Chinese emperors, are not excepted.
A edict from the authorities issued in October stated that private citizens were not allowed to own dogs except in very special cases, and said that all un-registered dogs would be killed from December 1 onwards.
The animals’ owners will also be liable to a fine equivalent to about 16 pounds sterling – the average worker’s wage here.
The original deadline for the removal of dogs was november 1, but the city government later remembered that early november is the time when the whole city is involved in harvesting, collecting and storing cabbages in preparation for the winter, and the dogs were given a one-month’s reprieve.
Dogs and other animals have been banned in China’s urban areas since the 1950s for health reasons, but in the past few years, an increasing number of closet dog and cat-lovers have been indulging their passion.