Robot dogs spotted “playing” at Chiang Mai University

As if Thailand didn’t have enough dogs roaming the streets already, Chiang Mai University’s Faculty of Engineering has manufactured a pack of robot dogs which have been spotted “playing” on a field at the university’s campus in Chiang Mai, northern Thailand.

An unsettling video of the robot dogs posted on Facebook has netizens divided on whether the dogs – which can run, lie down and roll over – are cute, terrifying or hilarious.

“If I can’t eat it, then it’s not a dog.”
“Does it hurt when they bite?”

The post didn’t state whether the dogs are designed to serve any kind of purpose or if they are just a showcase of the faculty’s engineering talent. Perhaps the dogs will chase away the packs of real dogs which freely roam the university’s huge 3,490 acre campus, sometimes causing havoc by chasing motorbikes or attacking students.

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One Facebook user commented “P Tia T-800” – joking that the dogs are robotic replacements of CMU’s late beloved mascot dog, who loved leading new students up Doi Suthep mountain to pay respects at the temple. Tia, suspected to be 8 or 9 years old, died in suspicious circumstances last year.

Tia the dog went missing on May 4 and her body was found behind Rajamangala University of Technology Lanna on May 7. CCTV footage showed the dog being driven out of the university on a motorcycle on the night of May 4. ThaiRath reported that a policeman was charged with theft, torturing animals and disposing of an animal carcass in relation to Tia’s death.


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Leah is a translator and news writer for the Thaiger. Leah studied East Asian Religions and Thai Studies at the University of Leeds and Chiang Mai University. Leah covers crime, politics, environment, human rights, entertainment, travel and culture in Thailand and southeast Asia.

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