Introduction

Sapsarees, once inhabited widely in the Peninsula of Korea, faced the danger of extinction after a massacre of the breed under the Japanese colonization. Thanks to the support of the Ministry of Science and Technology in 1960, Professor Sung-jin Ha and Professor Yeon-bin Tak (Kyungpook National University's Department of Agriculture) were able to collect 30 remaining Sapsaree dogs around the country and began the preservation research of the breed. In 1985, Professor Ji-hong Ha, the son of Professor Sung-jin Ha, took the old research data collected by Professors Ha and Tak and established a system for Sapsaree research. In 1992, Sapsarees were designated as Korea's National Monument (No. 368) and Korean Sapsaree Association was established, which later became the Korean Sapsaree Foundation in 2010. In 1999, Sapsarees began to be distributed to public for the first time and there are now about 2,500 Foundation members who rear this rare and precious breed and support the preservation effort. The Korean Sapsaree Foundation is the only organization in Korea that promotes the awareness, preservation, and welfare of Sapsaree dogs with a systematic tracking and maintenance of the pedigree using DNA research. The Foundation seeks to create a pet friendly culture in Korea and internationally with Sapsarees as life companion dogs, making them a proud cultural heritage in the world.

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