North Korean authorities are urgently trying to buy up dogs from several parts of the country for dog meat restaurants in Pyongyang, Daily NK has learned.

“The authorities have ordered that officials in several areas of the country, including Pakchon County, buy up dogs weighing 15 kilograms or larger and send them to Pyongyang,” a North Pyongan Province-based source told Daily NK yesterday.

The order directed local officials to send the dogs to 36 well-known dog meat restaurants in Pyongyang.

Local officials in Pakchon County have reportedly been ordered to supply dogs to a famous restaurant in Pyongyang’s Taesong District.

Over a period of seven days, Pakchon County officials reportedly purchased dogs weighing 15 to 18 kilograms from dog owners and have already sent a total of 720 kilograms worth of dogs to Pyongyang.

Local officials in the county reportedly claimed that North Korean leader Kim Jong Un was “missing sleep at night” worrying about whether Pyongyang denizens would be able to eat and that “we [people outside of Pyongyang] need to help lessen his worries.”

“The government didn’t pay for the dogs with cash,” the source said. “Local party officials promised they would pay the dog owners with a certificate guaranteeing them rice or Chinese-made [cooking] oil by Oct. 10.”

The source added that dog owners gave their dogs to the government in exchange for rice and cooking oil “because they thought it would be better than selling the dogs to local restaurants at low prices.”

Daily NK has also learned that dog meat restaurants outside of Pyongyang face difficulties because all the available dogs have been bought up and the price of dog meat has skyrocketed.

The issue is compounded by the fact that there are few people who actually raise dogs for a living.

There are complaints among people outside of Pyongyang about not being able to eat dog meat to “beat the heat,” the source said.

Please direct any comments or questions about this article to dailynkenglish@uni-media.net.

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Kim Yoo Jin is one of Daily NK's freelance journalists. Please direct any questions about his articles to dailynkenglish@uni-media.net.