A few months ago I volunteered at Care for Dogs–I offered to take pet portraits, lucky me!–a wonderful Chiang Mai not-for-profit organization providing comprehensive veterinary care to abandoned, abused and malnourished street and temple dogs. They house 150-200 dogs at their main shelter, with an additional dozen or so at a special, isolated distemper treatment facility. A small staff attends to daily medications, twice daily feedings, veterinary treatments, placing animals for adoption and the general running of the shelter. Volunteers are always welcome at Care to provide loving interaction and give attention to the dogs, as well as assist with adoption campaigns and awareness raising.
In addition to their active rescue and care efforts, CfD actively advocates for animal rights and works with local government to implement sterilization programs. Due to costs, spay and neuter programs are rarely widespread in Thailand and often are incompletely implemented. (For example, all female stray animals in a neighborhood will be rounded up and taken to a nearby temple–without being spayed.)
As a result there are always a large number of dogs who are abandoned, sold into the illegal meat trade or otherwise neglected. Many temples attempt to provide shelter for street dogs but this is often an inadequate solution. Education and more effective public education campaigns are needed to diminish the suffering of Thailand’s dogs.
Care for Dogs works on these issues, frequently shouting into the wilderness here in Thailand. It’s a common refrain but, at the risk of redundancy let me make these requests again:
These animals need homes. Can you help?
These animals need food, which costs money. Can you help?
The New Hope Recovery Center (for distemper treatment) needs a new location. Can you help?
These animals need love. Can you help?