Simon Cowell donates $49k to help shut down South Korean dog meat farm

Dogs bred for dog meat (they look sad).
Dogs bred for dog meat. Photo credit: Twitter/Humane Society International

America's Got Talent judge Simon Cowell has donated £25,000 ($49,214) to charity to help shut down a dog meat farm in South Korea.

Workers from charity Humane Society International (HSI) are hoping to fly to South Korea next week and begin the process of saving more than 200 dogs housed at the farm.

"Simon's generous donation means the world to us, and provides a huge boost to our appeal to close this horrendous dog meat farm," HSI UK executive director Claire Bass says in a statement.

"More than 200 dogs are languishing in the most appalling conditions, but we have a real chance to save them."

Once they've been picked up from the farm, the dogs will be flown to Canada and be adopted out to new homes. Ms Bass says it's a small step in the way to closing down the entire industry.

"With every dog farm we close and every farmer we help switch to a more profitable, humane business, we're showing the South Korean government that it's possible to end this cruel trade.

"These poor dogs have had the worst lives so far, so we're desperate to get them out of those dreadful cages and show them love, soft beds and loving arms for the first time in their lives."

According to HIS, South Korean farmers typically raise 2.5 million dogs a year for eating. It has declined in popularity in recent years. The meat is most often eaten during the summer months in a soup called bosintang, which is believed to increase stamina.