Millions of dogs infected with rabies are being killed in horrific slaughterhouses in Cambodia where ‘drowning pits’ are used to kill the animals.
The cruel practice sees helpless dogs kept in a foul-smelling shed covered in cobwebs on the outskirts of the capital, Phnom Penh.
Huge concrete tubs are reportedly being used to kill the dogs so their meat can be sold for food, a charity has found.
In one image a chained up monkey can be seen in the building watching over one of the ‘drowning pits’, according to the Mirror.
Some animals were pictured in cramped cages, which had been piled up and stacked in the back of vans.
Cambodian dog meat traders are known to drown, strangle and stab thousands of canines a day.
The shadowy but widespread business traumatises the workers and exposes them to deadly health risks like rabies, according to local media.
A chained up macaque monkey was seen in the Cambodian dog slaughter house that was described as ‘a scene from hell’
Dog were kept in cramped cages in the slaughter houses on the outskirts of the Cambodian capital, Phnom Penh
The dog meat trade in Cambodia sees millions of rabies-infected animals slaughtered, posing huge public health risks
Researchers say the dog meat trade is a public health crisis because it carries potentially animals infected with rabies, which can be transmitted to humans, all over the country.
Four Paws International charity discovered the gruesome practice in Phnom Penh hidden away near one of the country’s busiest tourist attractions.
An estimated two to three million dogs are slaughtered every year in Cambodia, according to the NGO, which identified more than 100 dog meats restaurants in the capital Phnom Penh and about 20 in the temple town of Siem Reap.
South east Asia consultant for the charity, Matt Backhouse, who is originally from Britain but now works in the region, said there are many locations around the country where dogs are slaughtered.
More than half a dozen dog meat restaurants in Siem Reap province are situated within three miles of Angkor Wat temple – Cambodia’s most famous tourist attraction that is visited by thousands of people from all over the world every year.
The disturbing images in Phnom Penh were captured by British environmental photojournalist, Aaron Gekoski, who described the scene as being ‘from hell’.
NGO Four Paws International, identified more than 100 dog meats restaurants in the Phnom Penh and about 20 in the temple town of Siem Reap
Dog meat slaughterhouses were found hidden away near one of the country’s busiest tourist attractions – just three miles from Angkor Wat temple
He told the Mirror: ‘This imagery has been haunting my dreams, I can’t get the dogs’ terror out of my mind.
‘The slaughterhouse with the macaque was a scene from hell. The stench, the sounds the dogs were making, the implements used to kill them scattered everywhere.
‘It was heartbreaking to see the dogs put through such ordeals. Some were shaking and trembling, others throwing up or defecating everywhere.
‘Some were biting at the cages, causing their teeth to fall out.’
Cambodia has one of the highest rates of rabies in the world, with most cases stemming from dog bites.
Demand for dog meat has been growing despite calls to ban it along with other countries known to carry out the practice also moving away from it.
Seoul, the South Korean capital, declared itself free of dog slaughterhouses last November after the last three meat shops in the city agreed to stop killing canines for food.
Live dog specimens can fetch $2 to $3 per kilo, giving suppliers an incentive to collect as many animals as possible.
One trader estimated he killed tens of thousands of dogs over the last five years.
South east Asia consultant for the charity, Matt Backhouse, who is originally from Britain but now works in the region to tackle the trade in dog meat
Gekoski added: ‘Some people say why’s eating a dog different from eating a chicken or cow? First off, 50 per cent of these dogs may have rabies, which can be transmitted to humans.
‘Also, the methods used to collect, store and kill them are incredibly cruel and inhumane.
‘Dogs are loyal and intelligent. They supposed to be man’s best friend, yet look at what we’re doing to them.’
Another meat trader who sells to local restaurants, quit his job as a scrap metal dealer to make money in the meat trade.
Kut Lan also said he risked being outcast from his community because eating dog meat was not in his culture.
He told the Mirror: ‘When we have a dog with rabies, we kill it first, so it doesn’t infect the others. It can be very dangerous collecting dogs as they have many diseases.
‘It isn’t a part of Khmer culture to eat dog meat, and many are against the trade.
‘However, it helps to support my family, and I can make a good living. There aren’t many job opportunities here.’
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