Is your dog ugly? Are you dissatisfied with your dog’s natural dog-face? South Korea has the solution!
According to The Washington Post, 20% of the female population in South Korea have already undergone various cosmetic procedures, and now the option to put your pouch under the knife to make your pets beautiful is also available.
Performing plastic surgery on dogs isn’t unprecedented; many breeds require surgeries to reduce bacterial build-up and infections in deep skin folds. Veterinarian at New York’s Animal Medical, Dr. Ann E. Hohenhaus, told CBS News: “If you had folds moved around in your skin we would call that plastic surgery. In the case of the dogs, it’s a medical necessity.”
However, according to an article published in Chosun Ilbo, a massively popular newspaper in South Korea, some are making their pets undergo procedures to improve their faces, not their health.
An unnamed veterinarian told Chosun Ilbo: “plastic surgery for pets in the past were for medical reasons but the result also brought better looking dogs, so there is a growing customer base getting plastic surgery for cosmetic reasons on their dogs.”
Another arguably braver veterinarian Dr Yoon said the procedures are ‘medically safe’, adding that owners had a right to make their pets more beautiful.
Popular procedures include tail shortening, ear trimming, straightening wrinkles, double eyelid surgery, stretch mark removal, fat removal and even Botox. Some of the procedures can be as cheap as $60, although others can cost as much as $250,000 (or ‘several hundred million won’ according to Google Translate.)
Fortunately, many South Koreans aren’t in favour of this growing trend. South Korean magazine Daily Vet conducted a survey of their readers and found that 63% of those polled believed cosmetic surgery for dogs should be banned. Meanwhile, a South Korean animal rights group has also labeled the procedures as a form of ‘animal abuse’.
Thousands of commenters have also expressed their disgust on the Chosun Ilbo online article. “Do people who make their dogs get these procedures think their pets are some kind of decoration or ornaments?” one commenter said. “Dogs are not dolls. They’re so selfish.”
Other comments included: ‘cosmetic surgery for dogs?? are u kidding me? O.o ain’t it like torturing the dog..?? God~ wat happen to mankind’ and ‘dog cosmetic surgery! ARE YOU F***** KIDDING ME! THIS PISSES ME OFF.’
Another commenter made an equally excellent point, stating: “What is the difference between this and forcing your own children to get plastic surgery?”
As to whether the practise of dog cosmetic surgery is even legal, the most concrete answer we can gather is: probably. Korean animal rights laws have literally one rule concerning animal surgery, that is ‘surgery on animals such as castration, de-horning and docking tails must follow veterinary methods’ despite the fact The Animal Protection Protection Law is prefaced with: ‘the purpose of this act is to provide the adequate protection and management of animals by preventing their mistreatment and to guide Korean citizens in the care, safety and respect of animal.’