March 31, 2023
Four years ago, this beautiful girl made her debut into the world when she was born somewhere in China. Her story bares the harsh reality of living in a country where dog meat consumption is not only practiced, but also widely accepted. Fortunately for this girl, her story is unique in that hers is one of survival.
It is estimated that 30 million dogs are killed for human consumption each year across Asia, in a brutal trade that involves unimaginable cruelty. In China alone, 20 million dogs are slaughtered every year. Many of these dogs are deliberately and intensively farmed for slaughter. Others are strays snatched from the streets. And surprisingly, a staggering number are family pets stolen directly from their owners and property. These dogs are crammed by the hundreds onto trucks, packed so tightly in cages that they are unable to move. They are typically driven for days or weeks, many dying from suffocation, dehydration or heatstroke along the way. It is not uncommon for those prisoners who are pregnant to go into labor during transport. In the most unfavorable conditions, their maternal hearts still manage to guide these Mamas as they desperately try to tend to their litters who don’t stand a chance.
When these dogs reach their destination, many still wearing the dog collars that were once lovingly placed, they endure calculated torture. This is because butchers believe peaked adrenaline levels result in a more tender and flavorful meat. After the dogs are beaten mercilessly *BUT STILL LIVING,* they are submerged in huge vats of boiling water, or hung from trees and skinned, while others are cut at the throat or groin and left to bleed out. Dogs “on deck” are crying and shaking in fear, as they are forced to witness these atrocities in an effort to further increase adrenaline levels.
Dog meat is consumed daily in China, but the annual Yulin Festival, which takes place every June 21st to June 30th, is considered China’s main event in the illegal meat-trade industry. Yulin attracts thousands of spectators and is responsible for the slaughter of 10,000 dogs alone.
Enter, my hero, Jeffrey Beri.
Once a successful jewelry designer who had regular exposure to the meat-trade during his business dealings in Asia, Jeffrey decided he had seen enough.
In 2016 the animal activist left the jewelry business behind to dedicate his life to rescuing and rehabilitating these innocent victims. Jeffrey founded No Dogs Left Behind and has worked tirelessly on the frontline saving countless lives, regularly putting himself and his team in harm’s way.
On June 11th last summer, the beautiful girl pictured above (named Cinnamon by NDLB) was on a slaughter truck heading straight for the Yulin Festival. But not on Jeffrey Beri’s watch. NDLB intercepted the truck, saving all dogs on board. Cinnamon and her truck-mates were immediately taken to a secret sanctuary in China where they have been receiving medical and rehabilitative care for the past 8 months.
Today, this girl arrived on US soil at JFK in New York.
Today, she became an official member of the Marshall Family.
And today, she is now and forever lovingly known by our family as Beri.