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Rawai Mayor looks to ban pets in work camps

Legacy Phuket Gazette



PHUKET: Rawai Mayor Aroon Solos revealed plans yesterday to prohibit those living in worker camps from owning pets as part of a new strategy to control dogs in the southern part of the island.

“We have no issues with people raising pets. However, when workers leave the camps the dogs are usually left behind, which has turned into a serious problem,” Mr Aroon said. “We need prevent the number of soi [street] dogs in the area from growing.”

Mr Aroon is currently reviewing municipality law to ensure he has the authority to ban dogs from being kept at worker camps.

“Everyone needs to think twice before getting a pet. The number of stray dogs is increasing. People need to realize that getting a dog is making a commitment for the rest of the animal’s life,” Mr Aroon said.

The problem with soi dogs along Nai Harn Beach and other parts of Rawai was thrust into the spotlight after complaints began rolling in to the municipality about the canines.

The plan is part of a multi-fold strategy to deal with dogs in the area, explained Mr Aroon.

“After speaking with representatives from the Soi Dog Foundation, we agreed that people who are feeding the stray dogs must not do so near the road, and only feed them between 9am and 4pm,” Mr Aroon said.

“If they are fed right next to the road, it causes a mess and can block people from jogging and cycling around the lagoon. Even if they are not aggressive, the dogs might get tangled up with someone working out and cause them to fall.”

Mr Aroon, explained to the Phuket Gazette that the Suan Pa Bang Kanun shelter is already full and that he is against euthanizing the dogs.

“The Soi Dog Foundation, of course, is helping out a great deal by neutering and spaying stray dogs, as well as giving them vaccines,” Mr Aroon said.

As an additional step in controlling dogs on Nai Harn Beach, the municipality will began enforcing old rules for dog owners.

“We had an agreement a long time ago that allowed dog owners to take their animals out before 8am and after 6pm. We used to have signs too, but many are gone and some people have either forgotten the rule or are ignoring it,” Mr Aroon said.

“Outside of these hours, they can still bring their dogs near the beach, but they need to make sure the dogs are well behaved. They also need to make sure they are cleaning up any feces the dog leaves behind.

“I just want to make the beach a nice place for everyone.”

— Chutharat Plerin


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