In 2021, there had been reports of China killing cats and dogs due to the SARS-CoV-2 virus. In November, reports of local health workers in Chinese cities breaking into people's homes and killing their pets while their owners are in quarantine resurfaced. In one case, a dog owner witnessed through her home security camera people in hazmat suits entering her home and beating her pet corgi to death with iron rods while she was away at a quarantine facility. She later tested negative for the virus.
The owner's video has gone viral on China's social media site, Weibo, attracting millions of views from users who were furious with the way pets have been disposed of in fear that the animals could transmit the virus to humans.
More recently, another pet dog was beaten to death by a health worker in Shanghai – an incident that sparked fury online. The beating apparently happened at a residential compound in Pudong district and was met with horror after going viral on April 6.
The clip appeared to have been filmed by a resident from a nearby building. It shows a COVID-19 prevention worker dressed in protective gear chasing the pet down and hitting it three times with a shovel. In the two photos posted online, the pet was seen running after a bus. Another photo showed its body being taken away in a plastic bag.
Reports also surfaced that the pet's owner was in quarantine during the time of the attack and had released the dog onto the streets after being unable to find anyone to care for the animal in his absence.
Shanghai put its 25 million residents under lockdown until further notice and they are slated to face several rounds of mass testing. Those who test positive are then mandated to isolate. (Related: Chinese city implements harshest lockdown yet as Beijing aims for "zero-COVID.")
"In the end, I thought I could let [the dog] loose outside to become a stray, at least it wouldn't starve to death. I never thought once we had left, it would be beaten to death," the owner wrote in an online group, explaining that he had no dog food left at home and that the neighborhood committee declined to assist in caring for the pet.
International health authorities have said the risk of transmission from animals to humans is low. There is no evidence that animals are playing a significant role in the spread of COVID-19 to humans, either. China's National Health Commission also stated that there is no evidence of people catching COVID-19 from pets.
China has adhered to a zero-COVID policy since the beginning of the pandemic. This allowed them to stamp out all clusters and chains of transmission through border controls, mass testing, quarantines and lockdowns. (Related: China's zero-COVID strategy results to food shortages, delays in medical care.)
It also resorted to extreme measures, including separating infected toddlers from parents and barring residents from leaving their homes – sometimes for weeks.
This policy was also said to be broadly popular among the public, with many saying that it was necessary to avoid the high death tolls and economic collapses seen in other countries.
Reactions on social media have been mixed initially. Many expressed sympathy and anger, others argued that killing the animals was necessary due to the pandemic. This time, however, most online comments condemned the killing, which may be perceived as a sign of thinning patience from the public living in deteriorating conditions under lockdown.
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Watch the video below to know more about what is going on in China's zero-COVID camp.
This video is from the Data Dumper channel on Brighteon.com.