winter olympics 2018

Olympian Gus Kenworthy Posts About His Trip to a South Korean Dog Farm, Takes Home a Puppy

Gus Kenworthy. Photo: @guskenworthy

This year’s Olympics in Pyeongchang mark the second Winter Games freestyle skier Gus Kenworthy took home more than a medal. After rescuing a family of stray dogs from Sochi in 2014, Kenworthy and his boyfriend Matthew Wilkas opted to take home a puppy they dubbed Beemo after touring a dog farm outside Seoul that the Humane Society International allegedly worked to close because of poor conditions. “Yes, there is an argument to be made that eating dogs is a part of Korean culture. And, while don’t personally agree with it, I do agree that it’s not my place to impose western ideals on the people here,” Kenworthy wrote when posting about his trip. “The way these animals are being treated, however, is completely inhumane and culture should never be a scapegoat for cruelty.”

While the Olympian attempted to separate the concept of raising dogs for consumption in his Instagram post and the reportedly “heart-wrenching” conditions he saw, Kenworthy also tweeted, “Dogs are friends. Not food,” kicking off a backlash from people who felt that, as a visitor from the United States to South Korea, that’s not exactly his call to make. When questioned about the poor conditions facing other livestock animals, including those Kenworthy might find more appropriate to eat, the skier tweeted that dogs constitute a smaller, “more manageable” pool of animals to help. He wrote, “Just b/c 10 things are wrong doesn’t mean working to solve 1 issue is bad b/c it leaves 9 other problems. It’s still positive change.”

Olympian Gus Kenworthy Adopts Puppy After Visiting Dog Farm