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An Interview With 2 Vietnamese Dog Thieves

Dog theft has become a major issue over the years in Vietnam, especially as the country develops and people form deeper bonds with their pets. Any local dog owner lives with the knowledge that there are those who roam streets at night in search of easy prey, looking for canines to sell in the burgeoning dog meat market.

Vietnam Net conducted an excellent interview with a pair of dog thieves who spoke on the condition of anonymity and confirmed some of what we assume about these criminals while providing some insight into why they picked this “profession.”


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Here are some of the highlights from the interview which can be read in full here.

Why do you do this job?

I lost at gambling and I had to balance income and expenses for the family. I know this is illegal, but I was born inferior to others. I'm uneducated and do not have a stable job.

Why don’t you get something else, not just dogs?

It is easy to catch dogs. In the countryside all households raise dogs. If we are arrested, the penalty is only probation for the first time.

In many cases the dog thieves were beaten to death. When you are in such a dangerous situation, can you kill the pursuers?

In a situation if we do not kill them, they will kill us, I will do anything to protect myself.

If your dog were stolen, how would you feel?

Of course I would be angry, but if you can’t protect your belongings, you have to accept losing it.

So how many dogs have you caught so far?

Many. Seven years equals 84 months, with at least 50 dogs a month, so it is more than 4,000 dogs.

Are you concerned about the ones who lose their dog? Maybe the dog is a pet?

I do not care. At night the dogs go out for a pee, go shit, and we catch them. We do not need to know who is its master!

The dog is in pain and it cries and moans. Do you feel pity for it?

A little. Sometimes I hear them cry, I feel guilty. I knew that I did an illegal act, but I had to correct myself immediately. I have been doing this job for a long time, so I feel it normal. I have to accept it.

[Vietnam Net]

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