http://www.nytimes.comBEIJING — Animal rights advocates are reporting a victory in their fight against an annual dog meat festival in China, saying that officials in the southern city of Yulin had agreed to ban the sale of dog meat in the week before the event.

“I don’t think they will publicly acknowledge it,” said Andrea Gung, the founder of the Duo Duo Project, referring to the government officials. “But my source spoke with every single one of the dog meat vendors at Dongkou” — Yulin’s main market for the meat — “and they all said the same thing: a seven-day ban on dog meat sales starting on June 15.”

It’s summer in the U.S.A. and you know what that means.  Warm weather, swimming, relaxation and don’t forget the most important thing-barbecuing.

This strange story out of China is welcome news for us Americans as we fire up our grills and get ready to cook out.  I’m expecting dog meat prices to really drop in the next few weeks at my local grocer as the Chinese surplus supply hits the market.

And don’t forget about the local homegrown stuff.  Just last weekend I was tossing a tennis ball for hours in the back yard to my family dog Natan.  I think the kids were trying to name him Nathan but it came out Na-tan so we stuck with it.  He’s a pug and smart as a whip.  Here’s a picture of him.

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We like to dress him up.  Ol’ Nate got an extra dinner and plenty of treats after his workout.  Can’t have the little guy getting skinny on us.

Next weekend the kids can say their goodbyes and we will shear him and turn him into a mouthwatering smoked brisket.  It’s good to teach the kiddos about the circle of life early.

Well, have a summer everyone!  Hope it’s a great one.