It’s A Dog’s Life: Soi Dog Project Phuket
The incredible Soi Dog Project in Phuket has been helping man’s best friend for 25 years and counting.
We’ve previously written about ethical elephant sanctuaries, but some of you have asked us who takes care of the stray dogs of Thailand. Anyone who’s visited Thailand will have encountered the stray dogs that live on the country’s streets at some point. Ranging from well-fed and happy to malnourished and terrified, these homeless hounds are a nationwide problem that need a sympathetic helping hand.
The Soi Dog Project provides this help in Phuket, helping to educate the public on dog welfare and providing new homes for these affectionate but down-and-out dogs.
What’s it all about?
The Soi Dog Project was set up in 2003 to care for sick and injured dogs in the area and provide sterilization to help control the growth in the stray dog population. Their initial mission to run mobile clinics has been expanded into international adoptions and a prominent campaign to end the illegal dog meat trade in northern Thailand. You can visit the center for as little as an hour or as long as a year and it’s a wonderful experience for animal lovers. Here’s the low-down on how to get the most from your visit.
If you don’t have much time but still want to pat some pooches then a day visit is for you. The project is open from 09:00 to 12:00 and 13:00 to 15:30 on weekdays and 09:30 to 12:00 on Saturday mornings. You can’t get the full hands-on experience if you only pop in for a couple of hours as the dogs don’t have time to get to know you, but you can still have a few strokes with the more confident characters if you play your cards right.
Guided tours run at 09:30, 11:00, 13:30 and 14:30 throughout the week and don’t have to be pre-booked so just turn up and get ready for an informative visit.
Longer-Term Volunteer Work with Soi Dog
The other way to get involved with the project is to pledge more of your time and become a volunteer. The shortest commitment is a 3 day stretch as the dogs will start to recognize you. If you have more time then so much the better! The longer you stay, the more you and your furry friends will get out of it. Duties can include grooming the dogs, accompanying them on walks, helping them to socialize and generally keeping them human-friendly to aid adoption.
Want to get your hands dirty? Then there’s always poop-scooping and kennel-cleaning to be done! If you’re veterinary-trained then they are always in need of expert helpers to aid in the medical management of cases in the clinic.
The center is located at Soi Dog Foundation, 167/9 Moo 4, Soi Mai Khao 10, Tambon Mai Khao, Amphur Thalang, Phuket 83110. The easiest way to arrive is by red truck or scooter as it’s a good 50 minute drive north from Patong Beach; don’t try and hike it!
Find out more about the project online at https://www.soidog.org/, and take a bit of cash when you visit. A donation to the center is a donation to help support these causes so dig deep and give these loveable dogs a helping hand.