Free Korean Dogs started 3 years ago on Canada Day – July 1st, 2015. It all started when I was visiting my mother who lives in the country side, a place with all my childhood memories. I still remember that hot summer day when I was driving on a bridge that leads to my hometown. I saw four men standing on that bridge trying to hang a dog. I pulled over the car immediately and I saw the tall, beautiful Tosha dog that I would see every morning when I walked my own Jindo dog.
Like most dogs in the country side, this Tosha was tied to a pole with a very short leash. There was no shelter to hide from rain, heat, nor cold. And of course, there was no water but traces of some human food scraps. Whenever this dog saw us, she barked at us quite aggressively. But, as soon as her owner came out, she started wagging her tail and behaved like a happy child.
I got furious seeing this group of men trying to hang their own dog, just for the purpose of human consumption. I told them what they were doing was illegal and I would call the police. These men recognized me as we all lived in a small town; in fact, they were fathers and uncles of my childhood friends. They went on to tell me how rude I was and it was not my place to say anything. I offered them some money and a supply of dog food to end the disagreement. With my offer and their fear of police involvement, they finally untied the dog.
The EK Park from 2015 was “a little” naïve – I believed that if I provided the owner with some food, money and help, he would keep the dog. A few days later, I dropped by their house to leave more food. I realized that aggressive barking sound which I got so accustomed to was forever gone.
Such tragedy is something once you saw it, it cannot be unseen. The horror and suffering of all innocent dogs left me with so much pain and grief. I simply couldn’t walk away from the horrible images. Their lives were deemed so meaningless and each dog was living a life with continuous pain and suffering.
One day when I was having a video chat with my husband in Toronto, Canada, he suggested me to do something to help the dogs in Korea. As I was lost and depressed, I asked him how…
His exact words were, “Well, I just registered an internet domain – Free Korean Dogs. Now you have the website.”
The first two years were very challenging. They were filled with constant struggles: with dogs and people. But now we have survived for three full years. During this journey, Free Korean Dogs saved and found forever homes for over 600 Korean rescued dogs. What is more important is that we ended the cycles of horrible suffering to 600+ dogs and their precious descendants.
Summer 2018, Free Korean Dogs will shut down a dog meat farm with 100+ dogs located near my home town in Korea. Two years ago, I discovered this dog meat farm due to a GPS error. This GPS error took me through an unusual driving path; but with a destination meant for Free Korean Dogs.
These 100+ dogs lived in dirty, crowded and unsanitary cages. I promised these dogs that I would come back to save them. It took Free Korean Dogs exactly 2 years. Yes, it is late; but never too late. Free Korean Dogs, our colleagues and our partnered rescue groups in Korea will gather together to save the dogs this summer.