As we all know, COVID-19 is spreading across the entire world. Whether it’s through infection, cancelled flights, lockdowns, or food and supplies shortages, we are all feeling the effects. Here at Rescue P.A.W.S., we are also not immune to the virus’s impact. We are planning to increase key areas of our animal rescue operation due to the economic impact on stray animals and pets from the virus and we need your help to help those who do not have a voice!
Millions of Thais have lost their jobs as the tourism sector has collapsed. Our region Hua Hin, a popular tourist destination, has been devastated. Moreover, the Thai government has mandated that all restaurants close for everything but takeout service. Restaurant owners are a main source of food for strays. They typically feed strays in their area with leftover food each evening. What this means for the strays in the region is that there will be far less food to go around, undoubtedly causing starvation, disease, and wounded animals from animal fights over diminished food.
Pets are also hard hit during times like these. With many people rationing after losing their jobs, pets are usually left to fend for themselves. We expect to see many more dumped dogs and cats in the coming weeks and months, which is going to intensify the combat over food within the many packs we monitor and support.
The timing of this crisis couldn’t be worse. This is not only a time of less food, but also less water. Thailand is entering the hottest and driest time of the year. This is especially hard on strays as they have little access to drinking water.
Rescue P.A.W.S. is aware of the impending tragedy. We plan to dramatically increase our feeding runs and wound care, not only to our more than two dozen packs, but also dogs in the community that had previously been cared for by restaurants and vendors. We want to closely monitor their health through vaccinations and parasite treatment, which keeps both the animal and the human community healthy, and ensures strays have enough to eat and drink.
We’ve recently lost lots of paying volunteers, who were forced to drop the program due to COVID-19. Volunteers make up nearly 70% of our funding. Without them, our budget is severely limited and we are forced to consider scaling back operations at the very time when, as you can see, we should be dramatically increasing our work.
We desperately need donations to ensure that the stray dogs and cats of Hua Hin can survive the shock waves of COVID-19. They don’t have a voice to ask for help, but the reality is that they need our help more than ever.