Animal Welfare in Hong Kong

Whether we are pet keepers or not, we are surrounded by animals and animal products. Hong Kong is only a small region but its high population density means that a very large number of animals are effected by its residents. Looking at the numbers below illustrates the size of the challenge faced by the SPCA in the quest to improve animal welfare.

Animals eaten in Hong Kong

In Hong Kong in 2009, some 4,600 live pigs, some 78 live cattle and some 22,000 live chickens were slaughtered every day. This does not include meat that is frozen or chilled that is imported from overseas.

Live animals
slaughtered

Daily (2009)

Annually (2009)

Pigs

4,600 animals

1,597,373 animals

Chickens

33 tonnes (approx 22,000 animals based on an average weight of 1.5kg)

11,944 tonnes
(approximately 7,962,666 animals)

Cattle

78 animals

approx 28,000

Freshwater fish

250 tonnes

48,342 tonnes

Marine fish

130 tonnes

92,450 tonnes

Eggs

 

39,324 tonnes

Animals kept in Hong Kong

In a thematic survey conducted by the Census and Statistics Department in 2005, it was estimated that 286,300 households (12% of all households) in Hong Kong had some 524,800 pets. Of which, 197,900 (37.7%) were dogs, 99,200 (18.9%) were cats and another 98,300 (18.7%) were turtles and tortoises.

 

Number of animals

Percentage

Dogs

197,700

37.7%

Cats

99,200

18.9%

Turtles and tortoises

98,300

18.7%

Birds

51,800

9.9%

Hamsters

38,300

7.3%

Rabbits

12,200

2.3%

Other

27,300

5.2%

TOTAL

524,800

100%

Animals abandoned in Hong Kong

The Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department (AFCD) handles between 5,000- 7,000 stray dogs annually. In 2011, the department handled 5,800 stray dogs and 3,557 stray cats; 852 dogs and 205 cats were re-homed through animal welfare organisations. The majority of stray animals are put down if homes cannot be found for them.

Animals handled by SPCA

2014/2015

Dogs

Cats

Others

TOTAL

Collected/ rescued by inspectors

1,675

1,614

1,184

4,473

Surrendered by owners

171

241

312

724

Strays found by the public

194

330

154

678

Selected from AFCD for rehoming

128

122

31

281

Selected from shelters for rehoming

26

92

265

383

Kept for homing

692

1,076

810

2,578

Foster animals

198

502

98

798

Strays sent to AFCD

607

0

101

   708

Humanely destroyed

554

1,066

593

2,213

Animals homed

698

1,032

714

2,444

Animals "worn" in Hong Kong

Fur

Some fifty million animals, including an estimated two million dogs and cats, are subject to unnecessary cruelty by the fur trade. Hong Kong is the centre of this trade, being the largest exporter of furs in the world. Many furriers have set up production and manufacturing facilities in China due to higher production as well as stricter environmental rules in Hong Kong. HK functions mainly as a re-export hub where furs from overseas are moved on to China. 93% of HK's fur skin exports to China are for manufacturing and production. During the first half of 2010 the Hong Kong Trade and Development Council reported that fur related exports from Hong Kong increased by over 20%.

Learn more about fur farms on our Fur Trade page.

Leather

In 2003, Hong Kong was one of the world's largest importers of leather skins, second only to the United States. Hong Kong remains a major hub for re-exporting leather products from the Mainland. Footwear makes up 70% of leather exports, with the US and European Union being its two largest markets.