PETA criticizes ousted Park for abandoning dogs

South Korea's former president Park Geun-hye and her pet dogs are seen in this handout picture provided by the Presidential Blue House.
PHOTO: Reuters

A US animal rights group called on the South Korean government on Thursday to provide immediate care for nine dogs that ousted President Park Geun-hye left behind when she moved out of the presidential palace.

"Being left behind is frightening, confusing, and dangerous for dogs and other animals who depend on their human guardians for food, water, shelter, veterinary care, and all their other needs," said PETA Asia Vice President of International Campaigns Jason Baker in a statement.

"There is never an excuse for leaving behind animals who depend on us for survival," it added.

Read also: Park Geun-Hye has left presidential Blue House but her 9 dogs have not

The statement came after the already unpopular former President Park was under fire for not taking her dogs with her when she moved into her private residence in southern Seoul on Sunday night.

The Constitutional Court ruled to remove her from office over a corruption scandal on March 10.

Read also: Park Geun-hye leaves Blue House, says 'truth will reveal itself' 

CARE, a Seoul-based animal rights group, offered to look after the nine Jindo dogs -- a Korean breed known for loyalty and devotion -- and find them new families, blasting Park for not being responsible.

A Busan-based animal rights group filed a complaint with the prosecution Monday, asking it to investigate Park's alleged violation of the Animal Protection Law.

Read also: Die-hard loyalists guard Park Geun-hye's home

The family of dogs consists of a male-female pair, which Park had received as a gift from her neighbours when she moved into the presidential residence in 2013, and seven puppies that were born in January.

In photos, including one posted on the Blue House's Facebook page, the former president was seen playing with the dogs.

S Korea President Park Geun-hye may have undergone various anti-aging medical procedures

Amid growing controversy, the presidential office said it would put up the nine Jindo dogs for adoption.

"We are mulling over how to put up a notice to receive applications to preserve their blood purity," an official from the Blue House was quoted as saying.

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