Canadian figure skater Meagan Duhamel has rescued a dog from the South Korea dog meat trade at the Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, and plans on saving more.
The two-time world champion pairs skater and Olympic gold medal winner, adopted one dog when she visited South Korea last February and said she wants to bring another home with her to Canada at the end of this Olympic games.
The vegan figure skater rescued her mini-dachshund Moo-tae from a dog meat farm with help from Free Korean Dogs. The rescue and advocacy group drove 10 hours to bring Moo-tae to meet Duhamel while she was doing a test run at the Olympics facility and she fell in love with the special needs dog.
Duhamel says the second dog she rescues will be rehomed in Canada. She’s hoping that other dog-loving athletes will be inspired to do the same. “I don’t have the luxury of keeping another dog in my small condo. As much as I would love to,” she said, as to why she won’t be adopting the second dog herself.
Close to two million dogs are raised on meat farms in South Korea each year and then slaughtered to be served at restaurants throughout the country. Nearly a dozen dog meat restaurants are currently operating close to the Olympic Stadium despite requests from the South Korean government.
Despite growing resistance among the Korean population and government towards dog meat, it is still legal to sell and consume it.
As for Duhamel’s lucky rescue pup, she says that the little dog loves his new life. Moo-tae has misshapen legs due to the abuse he experienced as a puppy, but he loves everybody he meets.
“Most of the time, he just wants to sit in everybody’s arms,” Duhamel told the Associated Press. “He doesn’t even care to play, he just walks up to everybody and wants to be held.”
Duhamel talks about how she came to adopt Moo-tae in the video below.