The story of Streetdog SOS is one of three friends, united by a shared love of animals, who wanted to make a difference to the desperate plight of street dogs in Thailand.
In the breath-taking foothills of Khao Yai National Park, an area famed for its temples, waterfalls and elephants, Pim bought a piece of land. The Bon Jardin farm, named after her dog Bonnie, contains mango groves, lush rice paddies and bamboo forests. It wasn’t long before a local street dog wandered onto the farm looking for food and a place to live. Pim named him Paman and he was soon joined by more. A handful of dogs quickly became dozens and Pim's farm was reborn as a dog sanctuary.
Before Bon Jardin, Pim had moved to London to learn English. There, she worked part-time in a shop where she met James who was planning to open a nightclub called Ministry of Sound. They became friends when they bonded over their shared love of animals – Pim desperately missed the ten cats she had left behind in Thailand.
As with many new businesses, nightclubs in particular, the first few years were hard. Pim's calm support based on the teachings of Buddha helped James through the late nights and constant worry. As Ministry of Sound became known worldwide, Pim bought further plots of land in Nakhon Nayok to expand the dog sanctuary, building houses and vital infrastructure.
Meanwhile back in London, Mike was working in the Ministry of Sound IT department and also as a part-time DJ. He loved animals, but his life took a new turn on a DJing trip to Koh Phangan in 2015.
Early one morning after an all-night set, Mike was walking on the beach when he met Suzie, with whom he instantly fell in love. Poor Suzie had lost one eye in a dog fight and had cataracts in the other. She was weak and hungry; she would never survive blind on the beach. Mike brought her home to live with him in London.
Inspired by their shared experience with Thai street dogs, James, Pim and Mike wanted to do something to make a difference. They knew the scale of the problem and the issues involved.
There were already dogs being cared for on the farm, could they build on this experience to create a base from which to make a real difference? Mike packed his bags, gave up life in London, and moved to Thailand. Streetdog SOS was born.
The first two years were spent setting up the charity; hiring staff, building kennels, understanding local customs, reaching out to government officials, learning about the dog population, sterilization & vaccination, and establishing relationships with the Temples around which so much of life in Thailand revolves.
We have now successfully sterilized over 2,000 dogs, rescuing and rehoming dozens more. Please read some of our stories in the Rescue section to hear about our vital mission.
This has also been a time of learning for us. We love to provide shelter for dogs on our farm – we currently have over sixty – but we must focus time and resources on our sterilization and vaccination program. The dog population in Thailand is out of control, this is the root cause of the problem which leads to every other ill – fights, malnutrition, disease, accidents and abuse.
We have linked up with our friends at Ministry of Sound in London to create Ministry of Hound, fun events where dog lovers get together with their pets to swap stories, take part in dog-related parties and raise money for Streetdog SOS.
You can read about these events here. There are dog lovers everywhere and we hope Ministry of Hound will grow beyond our London base over the coming years.