We saw this poor old dog in Chinatown over a few holidays - it lived in a phonebooth near our hotel, in one of the Chinatown shopping streets. Seemed to be quite tolerated here - people would stand behind and lean over it to make phone calls, and I guess it was given food - all the market animals seem to be cared for in some way. I was almost sad to find that it was gone last time we were in Chinatown - I guess his days were numbered.
In the U.K. my mum would be on the phone to the local pound giving it merry heck about how there is a wild dog on the loose and the rabid mutt is about to take her dearly beloved grandson’s leg off rather than look at him.
In Thailand it isn’t like that. Dogs in sois may be scabby; they may look like nothing out of Cruft’s best in breed. They may have one leg missing. Yet the Thais go with it. And the Buddhist thing means that many of my office staff will even nip out of the office at lunch time, pop down to the local 7-Eleven, buy a can of Chum and feed the scabby mongrel. You see it is all about this live and let, life is all part of the same wheel, and what goes round comes round, sort of thing (I don’t mind, it’s tax deductible).
And do you know what? These dogs are dead cool. No barking, no going bonkers when you get home, no tail chasing bravado, like our Kevin. Soi temple dogs just wander around, have a bit of a kip, sniff round some other dog’s bum – and well, you know… yeah, as if they were on holiday. (Do keep your small kids away from the dogs though, please.)
So no need to widdle yourself, stay calm, give them a medium to wide berth and you won’t have a major UK rottweiller / pit bull scene as you may be fearing. By the way, this is a Taoist temple. Thus proving soi temple dogs are non-denominational. Very wise.
Spend any time in Bangkok and you're bound to notice stray dogs just roaming the streets. They're everywhere you go. I particularly remember some just lying down in the middle of the sidewalk with pedestrians walking around them and stray dogs (in the picture) resting while you eat at an outdoor eatery.
Some of the dogs seem to be in awfully bad shape. Luckily, most dogs ignore people and are generally harmless.