54 pct of S. Koreans oppose allowing pets at nat’l cemeteries: poll

More than half of South Koreans were opposed to allowing people to bring their pets to national cemeteries despite the country's growing population of dog and cat owners, a poll showed Thursday.

In the poll of 1,005 adults aged between 19 and 69, 54 percent said they were opposed to bringing pets to national cemeteries, while 32.9 percent said they approve of visits if the pets are in carriers.

Only 12.8 percent said they approve of allowing pets at national cemeteries in the poll commissioned by the veterans ministry and conducted by Gallup Korea from Sept. 7 to 13.

The poll came after a celebrity couple triggered a debate last month by sharing photos of them walking their family dog at Seoul National Cemetery, where pets are currently not allowed. The couple later issued an apology, saying they were not aware of the ban.

On a separate issue, 87.8 percent said they opposed plastic flower decorations at national cemeteries, citing environmental reasons, while 9.3 percent said such decorations should be allowed.

On the role of national cemeteries, 74.7 percent said such venues should be used as a more open space to remember veterans and suggested improving public transportation, increasing facilities for visitors and holding cultural events.

The poll was conducted ahead of the Chuseok holiday, when many families of veterans visit national cemeteries to pay their respects.

The poll had a margin of error of plus or minus 3.1 percentage points.

Source: Yonhap News Agency

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