The South Korean belief that eating dog helps beat the heat in the summer months has angered animal rights activists around the world.
Known as ‘Bok-Nal’, the dog eating days, it is a ritual celebrated by South Koreans where dog meat is eaten to increase stamina during the hottest days of the year.
To coincide with the tradition, animal rights activists staged protests around the world today, packing into wired cages in various locations including in front of the South Korean embassies in Seoul, London and America.
While dog meat is consumed throughout the year, during Bok-Nal South Koreans consume more to combat the heat.
Dog meat restaurants in Seoul say they served more customers than usual today.
Animal rights group In Defense of Animals (IDAUSA) said dogs and cats are kept in cramped, filthy cages and slaughtered in unimaginable ways as part of the $2 billion dog and cat meat industry.
A statement on their website said: 'Two and a half million South Korean dogs are electrocuted, hanged, or beaten to death each year.
'The dogs are slaughtered in unimaginable ways: electrocuted, hanged, and even beaten to death, because of the prevailing myth that the greater the suffering the more tender and tastier the meat, and that the mythical health properties are enhanced.'
Thousands of cats are also eaten in soups and 'tonics'.
IDAUSA said: 'Cats are often bludgeoned and thrown into boiling water while still alive.'
According to Yonhap news agency, Seoul is experiencing the longest period of time with temperatures above 35 degrees Celsius since 1994.