The Canadian figure skater who rescued her dog from the South Korean meat market last year is taking home a gold medal from the Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea.
Meagan Duhamel and her skating partner, Eric Radford, helped Canada win the gold medal in the figure skating team event on Monday, according to CBS News DFW.
On top of her new Olympic medal, Duhamel is also a two-time world champion.
During a competition in South Korea last year, the skater rescued her puppy Moo-tae, The Associated Press reported.
Moo-tae is a dachshund mix who was unfortunately born into the Korean dog meat trade.
Duhamel is a vegan and dog lover, and rescued the 2-year-old puppy through the non-profit adoption group called Free Korean Dogs.
Ever since she brought him back home with her to Montreal, the skater and her dog have spent time doing yoga and playing at the dog park.
“We have a lady that walks our dogs every day while we’re training, and she says Moo-tae is the most popular dog in the dog park,” she told CBS News.
Around 2 million dogs each year are raised in extremely poor conditions on Korean dog meat farms.
If Moo-tae was not saved, he probably would have been sold and killed to be served in soup, which is considered a delicacy among the older generations.
In the province hosting the 2018 Olympic games, there are 196 registered dog farms.
Ahead of the Olympics, officials in host city Pyeongchang, South Korea, ordered the area’s restaurants to temporarily stop serving dog meat.
Citing customer demand, however, all but two of those businesses have opted to continue offering the widely condemned delicacy throughout the games.
Free Korean Dogs was founded by EK Park who was born in South Korea but currently lives in Toronto. Specifically, Park oversees the adoptions that bring dogs to Canada and the U.S.
The adoptions, however, are not possible without people volunteering to fly to Canada or the U.S. with the dogs.
“We have to really rely on flight volunteers flying from Korea to Canada,” Park said, according to the AP. “That’s like 90 percent of what we do.”
Park and Duhamel hope other Olympic athletes might consider being flight volunteers after the Winter Olympic Games this year.
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