Since somebody else took the risk and brought it up: Although it's technically illegal in South Korea to use dogs as human food, it's still done, and it's still a huuuuuge issue among not only animal rights activists, but anybody who checks out any of the websites that deal with the issue. It's not nearly as much a question of what this culture or that one chooses to see as "food", but much more how the animals are treated and slaughtered. Arguments about whether or not the U.S. treats its food animals compassionately or not are certainly fair; but what really makes people want to vomit is the ignorant, barbaric and primitive belief that eating dog is especially beneficial if the animal has suffered great pain prior to actual death. Consequently, dogs are beaten to death, or hung, or any number of other horrifically brutal methods. If South Korea has any source of genuine shame, this would be it. Shame on them.
That would be horrible! Do you have any references for that information? A quick search on Google gave the same article repeated over and over, as is so often the case on the internet, where plagerizing without attribution is the norm.
Try this: first, do a Google search for gaegogi. Then search for gaegogi -"often mistaken" (to exclude the phrase "often mistaken"). Notice the entirely different tone of the hits you get.
For anyone who is truly interested, Soju, the more productive Google search would be as follows: Korea+dog+beaten. There are nearly 7 million hits. To go even further, one could do a Google image search, using the words Korea+dog. As outdone as I am by this practice, and as much as I think more people should be aware of it, it's extremely distressing to read about it in graphic detail and to view actual photos. Consequently, I've opted to not post any links, on the theory that people who otherwise might be well-advised to stay away from those sites won't be tempted, and will have the opportunity to give it a bit of thought and to investigate only if they really want to know. I'm afraid there's not much, if anything, that those of us outside of Korea (and perhaps China, whose food choices are also hard for many to take) can do about it. Knowing about it has really weighed on my mind and is one of the things that makes it increasingly difficult for me to even tune in to Channel 41 lately; but I chose not to bring it up in this forum because it's so anti the reasons that people enjoy the darumas. However, your having brought it up only half-teasingly, combined with your being someone with some authority on this board, helped me to give myself permission to "speak."
(P.S. Cat lovers also beware of these sites, for the same reasons.)