Most dogs are German Shepherds, a breed used by law enforcement agencies around the world for their strength and intelligence.
The 54 trainees did not pass their program for a number of reasons, the police academy said – for example, a number of them were “shy”, “weak” or “frail”. Some “don’t bite” which means they didn’t follow coaches’ instructions to attack targets; others “lacked athletic ability” or showed a “poor ability” to retrieve items when thrown.
Each dog has a starting price of 200 yuan (about $ 30), with each bid increasing by a multiple of 50 yuan ($ 7.70) until the highest bidder wins.
Those who win the dogs are required to sign an agreement to follow government regulations to breed and care for the animals properly, the police academy statement said. They are prohibited from reselling the dogs or transferring them to another owner.
These dog auctions take place several times a year – the police academy also held auctions for “failed” dogs in March and June this year. But that latest ad for the July auction gained traction online, with the hashtag garnering 160 million views on Chinese social media platform Weibo.
Many online users have expressed sympathy and amusement for the rejected dogs, joking that they could relate to the experience of not meeting the high standards of others.
“They are like the children who do not arrive at the university after the gaokao and can only go to colleges, ”another joked, referring to the country’s rigorous and infamous college entrance exam. A high score is the only way to get into the best universities, and it only happens once a year – so most Chinese students only get one hit.
Others urged potential bidders to take the responsibility of adopting a pet seriously and not rush into an impulsive decision. “Don’t give it up, don’t overdo it and be able to deal with it well – if you can’t do it, don’t adopt it,” wrote one Weibo user.