• Reducing the overpopulation of street and temple dogs through sterilization /spaying programs and local adoptions.
  • Operating a rescue centre for puppies and dogs (which is used for adoptions, after-care from surgery/sterilisation, or for transitional rescue for dogs that are in immediate danger).
  • Improving the health status of homeless dogs through vaccinations and coordinating medical care in cooperation with our veterinary team.
  • Fighting the dog meat trade through advocacy and education.

Helping people help their dogs through:

  • Cooperation with monks and employees of temples to improve the quality of life for temple dogs.
  • Information to dog owners about sterilisations, medical care, taking them along with us to the vet, showing people how to show affection through gentle play and petting.
  • Reducing death rate by helping people understand that there are solutions other than killing dogs.
  • School education activities to make the younger generation more aware of animal welfare.

Although we concentrate mainly on dogs, we are able to facilitate treatment and sterilisations for cats as well as liaising with nuns at temples who foster kittens and adult cats if people are interested in adoption.

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Where we help

In our opinion the work we are able to do is just the tip of the iceberg. We ‘touch’ just a few of the many dogs and cats that are in need of human assistance, giving them appropriate treatments to improve their health and sterilising them to reduce the ever growing homeless population.

If there were more organised people such as WVS Thailand working in this same direction, then hopefully the future of animal welfare will surely be brighter. We therefore recognise the good work of fellow caring groups.

Emergency calls made by people who witness accidents or find a dog or cat in danger or suffering from injury are a constant demand and we react by attending and dealing as best we can with the situation, though sometimes our resources are stretched to the limit. If the animal is in need of medical care at a hospital, then we try to encourage people contacting us and ask if they are able to assist financially with the treatment but in any case, WVS Thailand will ensure the animal is treated and provide after care at the shelter.

We also visit various locations in or around Chiang Mai as listed below, where we look after the resident dogs that have been dumped or have now made these places their homes. We monitor their health, vaccinate on a schedule and ensure that all females are sterilised.

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Some of our volunteers also sponsor feeding at some of these places. We also have a network of temples who call us whenever one of their dogs is sick or injured.

If there is a new female in the area, we will rescue the dog to the shelter, monitor health signs and then arrange for sterilisation. Following a satisfactory recovery, we usually return the dog to where we picked them up. However sometimes it is quite obvious that the dog is likely to be adopted if seen by visitors to the shelter and we will keep the dog at the rescue centre for an extended period.

Obviously, whilst monitoring these areas, we do come across dogs that we refer to as “Special Needs Cases” and we will rescue these to the rescue centre for their own safety, e.g. dogs that are at risk of being abused, poisoned or brought to the dog meat market.

  • Wat Doi Kam
  • Wat Gaset Mai
  • Wat Nong Baa Klang (School project of Nakorn Payap International School)
  • Wat Pha Gee
  • Wat Suan Dok
  • Wat Umong
  • Wat Vivek
  • Wiang Dong and neighbouring villages
  • Big C’s Parking Lots at Super Highway & Hang Dong
  • Various ‘local’ markets
  • Airport Plaza Parking Lot

Further areas are attended, depending resources available to do so.

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2nd class dogs

Puppy’s are typically born fluffy, cute, playful and a little bundle of happiness to have around.

Here in Chiang Mai, like many other places in Thailand and around the world, where animal welfare does not seem to feature high on peoples agendas, there are just far too many puppies. There are positive examples of dedicated local dog lovers who look after their own or even homeless dogs very well but sadly there are also many cases of animal neglect.

The saleable commodities of little bundles of pedigree fluff at pet markets – often bred and kept in appalling conditions – is sad but a reality. In a country where safety & common sense practices are disregarded. Everyday you can see 4 people riding a motor bike with the poodle, or similar toy dog, leaning on the handle bar resting it’s feet on the riders knees. Sometimes there’s even an umbrella opened above the drivers head too. Larger dogs that do not appear in pedigree book pictures are not readily accepted as a pet or family dog, though His Majesty King Bhumibol of Thailand, has set an example by adopting homeless dogs and encouraged others to do the same and has even published books and videos of his favourite dog “Tongdaeng”. But still, many households consider a “Thai dog” as ideal to live in their garden as a guard dog or outside their home, whilst the pedigree or toy dogs live inside the house.

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Dumped on the street and in temples

Homeless dogs are largely responsible for the mass of puppies found wandering looking for food and shelter but family “latch key” dogs are possibly equally responsible. These dogs are often not sterilised and if puppies are born from family dogs, more often than not, the majority are dumped at a temple or other public place rather than found a home with a friend or neighbour. The truth is, if people know the WVS Thailand shelter, they sometimes try to anonymously dump a white rice sack full of fluffy bundles at the gate.

There are already so many “No Hope” dogs on the streets and if you visit markets, shop car parks or other public amenity area, where there might be food during early morning or evening, you will see them hanging around looking for food.

When dumped at temples, they fight for their lives and if they survive without being eaten or managing to find some food of their own, they will join the masses. These place are not picture card tropical rest homes but sad and dreary pitiful places. Some temples have literally hundreds and it is not because monks particularly like dogs, but because they get overwhelmed by dumped dogs from irresponsible owners. Some in fact want to move dogs out from the temples by any means possible.

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Situation at the shelter

Despite a regular rate of adoptions, the numbers of residents at the shelter remains high due to the WVS Thailand team effort to find homes for dumped puppies, rather than see them starve and die on the streets or just become one of the many thousands living a life of no hope. The current budget and space at shelter allows the housing of, on average at any time, approximately 80 dogs (young & old). The shelter could have hundreds if all offered dogs were accepted, so the team tries hard to concentrate on the most urgent cases. Some dogs come to the shelter for sterilisation or treatment and leave again. Some are brought to the shelter in order to advertise them for adoption and some rescued from imminent danger of being killed. Other dogs however, enter the shelter in a sad condition as a result of one of the following scenarios.

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Reality on the streets and in temples

Dogs are often hit by cars or motorbikes, run over whilst asleep under the car or even asleep at the side of the road. WVS Thailand often receives a dog from someone who came across the dog in terrible agony after an accident. Sometimes they take the dog directly to a vet or immediately seek our assistance, either with medical costs, transportation or boarding. Sometimes the dog stays at the shelter for recuperation and then – if healthy again – returns to the area it lived in. Sometimes the person who found the sick or injured dog continues to keep an eye on them. Just once in a while, the people take the dog into their family as a pet. Illness and injury from disease (e.g. distemper or parvo virus) and the consequence of living rough on the streets, can often kill a dog. Afflictions such as nerve damage, broken bones resetting out of place, open wounds putrefying and a list of other conditions lead to dogs living shorter lives. Dying sooner in some cases would seem to be a kinder release for them. But sometimes the dog comes to the shelter in good faith of being paid for and claimed by the person who found them in the street and they never follow through with their promise

When WVS Thailand becomes aware of any dog living with a health condition that could be improved with proper care, in the first instance we try to help the dog either by showing caring people in the area how to give medication, whilst the dog lives at its found home for instance a temple or car park. However, when we come across a dog who is living with a serious condition we will rescue the dog to the shelter and provide the care the dog requires. Sadly, quite a high number of the dogs “in for treatment” (Outpatient Dept) are neglected owner dogs.