Animal Rescue Organizations in Thailand

Many vegans want to spend time with animals when they come to Thailand. There are great ways to do this in some incredible places. Our last post focused on how to assess whether a place will meet a vegan’s high standards but, in case you want a pretty comprehensive list of places in Thailand, here’s one for you.

Please note that while many of these organizations are not vegan, they certainly try to improve life for the animals that they focus on and do not exploit animals for financial gain.

There are often many ways to support them. Perhaps you can donate, visit, or volunteer. Please check their websites before you visit for precise information, or reach out to check. Visits might only be under certain circumstances. If you really want to visit but they are closed when you are there, try reaching out. Ask whether a donation could be offered to be able to visit. Regular donors might get a private visit.

We want this post to be the ultimate guide for Thailand so, if we have missed an organization, let us know at [email protected]

PAWS Bangkok

This well-known organization is a place for cats and kittens in trouble. Please do not take animals here that you find in the streets. They are bursting at the seams. Ask them to see what you can do to help a cat you find. They have regular tours of their facility and they accept volunteers to socialize the cats.  They attend local farmers’ markets to promote their work and find homes for the many kittens that end up in their sanctuary. They also need people to foster.

Soi Dogs

This is a cat and dog shelter in Phuket and is frequently open for guided visits. They also accept volunteers to help at the shelter and flight volunteers. Their work focuses on rescuing sick street dogs and cats, fighting the dog meat trade, spay and neuter campaigns, and a Community Outreach program that teaches members of the public who are already feeding local animal populations to administer first aid to animals in need. Dogs and cats are available for adoption and they will ship your new friend overseas!

The Sounds of Animals

This is a lovely shelter that has rescued dogs from Cambodia’s dog meat trade and also Thai street dogs. It’s building a big shelter for animals and needs a lot of help! You can find out more about their volunteer program here.

Rescue Paws

This is in Hua Hin and aims to reduce the overpopulation of dogs and cats in Thailand. Volunteering holidays are available as well as day visits.​

Bodhi Dog Shelter

This shelter is in Phuket and is smaller than Soi Dog. They accept volunteers to work in the shelter. and flight volunteers. They have plenty of dogs for adoption and have 150 dogs in their shelter. They mainly rescue street dogs that are injured, sick, starving, or in bad condition. They are open 7 days a week and also have a clinic for people to bring their animals if they are unable to afford treatment for their animals. They are an open-style shelter and also treat street dogs in their community.

The Gibbon Rehabilitation Project

The project does incredible work in Thailand. The main attraction for volunteers and visitors is in Phuket where you can learn about their work. You will also learn about the plight of gibbons and see (and hear) the gibbons that are being rehabilitated or are unable to be put back in the wild. They seek to educate tourists to not pay for photos with these animals and to rescue, rehabilitate, and release gibbons that have been confined. If you spot gibbons being used as photo props (which is illegal), contact [email protected]. You can virtually adopt a gibbon and buy some cute merchandise too.

Boon Loot’s Elephant Sanctuary

This sanctuary, near Sukothai in the middle of Thailand, is a little off the well-beaten path and day visits are not allowed. Their main role is to rescue elephants from the tourism industry (riding and performances) and ellies used for begging, but also to do community outreach.  You can stay at the sanctuary and help in all areas of it. They are usually booked up well in advance. They also rescue dogs and cats and are available for adoption. It’s our dream to visit here.​

Burm and Emily’s Elephant Sanctuary

Just over two hours from Chiang Mai, this project works to raise awareness and to join with others towards ending the suffering and exploitation of the elephants.  You can volunteer or stay for a while. They also do tree planting and have a community outreach program. They have a small number of elephants that are old, injured, and retired having been rescued from the tourist trade.

Elephant Nature Park

Close to Chiang Mai, this is probably the best-known and visited an elephant sanctuary in Thailand, attracting many hundreds of visitors a day. They have a huge number of projects and opportunities for visits and volunteers. Their work concentrates on education and rescue. They have many other animals at the sanctuary in Chiang Mai, as well as projects in Surin, Kanchanaburi, and Siem Reap in Cambodia.

Phuket Elephant Sanctuary

This is the first, and only, an ethical sanctuary in Phuket. They rescue sick, injure​d, and old elephants, welcoming them back into their indigenous habitat. You can visit and volunteer.

Wildlife Friends Foundation Thailand

This organization has many projects and works hard throughout Thailand. Their website warrants study and you’ll be impressed by the incredible work they do to help wildlife in Southeast Asia. You can visit their Wildlife Rescue Centre, which is close to Hua Hin, for the day or you can even stay at the I Love Phants Lodge. They have several different volunteering projects.

WVS Care For Dogs

This is in Chiang Mai and has several projects. They have a shelter for dogs, conduct spay and neuter programs and have an education program visiting local Thai schools and schools visit their shelter.  There are some super volunteer opportunities too.​

Baan Unrak Animal Sanctuary

This sanctuary, close to the Burmese Border in Sangklaburi in the west of Thailand, provides a free veterinary clinic, the sanctuary’s mission is to improve the long-term quality of life for the resident dogs & and cats – local street animals and house-pets alike. Running humane sterilization and vaccination programs as well as educating locals about animal welfare issues helps them raise awareness and promote compassion for all living beings. There are opportunities for volunteering at the sanctuary and on flights.​

Lanna Dog Welfare

In Chiang Mai, this group does not have a shelter but there are opportunities for volunteering in their field sterilization programs.

Santisook Dog and Cat Rescue Organisation

This is in Chiang Mai and has many dog and cat projects from feeding animals kept at temples, to dog and cat sterilization. There are volunteer opportunities.

Dog and Cat Rescue Foundation Samui

The goal of this organization is to help street cats and dogs who live in the street on the beautiful island of Ko Samui. The shelters are open for visits and they love volunteers.

Lanta Animal Welfare

Located on the stunning island of Ko Lanta in the south of Thailand, you can visit for the day and have a drink at their 100% vegan Kitty Kafe. There are various ways to volunteer there and they need flight volunteers too.

PhaNgan Animal Care for Strays

This group needs volunteers on the island of Ko Phang Ngan in the south of Thailand and they need virtual volunteers too. Look on their website to find out more. They do not have a shelter or sanctuary but work mainly helping street animals in need of population control.

Never Forget Elephant Foundation

From the founder.  “We are a nonprofit organization located in Northern Thailand, about 400km southwest of Chiang Mai, Thailand.  Our mission is to improve the lives of endangered Asian elephants through the building of a local and global community of support.” They have a volunteer program!

Happy Dogs Ko Chang

Founded in 2012 Happy Dogs Koh Chang has had its sanctuary for a little over 3 years and is home to currently 31 dogs. They have a  separate foster home with another 15 doggies and they care for about 120 stray dogs every day around the island. On top of this, they have a mass spay program to spay the strays and they spay the dogs of the locals for free. Opportunities for volunteers include: caring for the dogs and cleaning the premises as well as walking, socializing, and even swimming with the dogs at the beach! Volunteers can also help out at the vet clinic. Their main goal is to spay/neuter and reduce the stray dog population in an ethical and human way, ending the suffering and preventing puppies that no one wants to be born that sadly end up on the streets and have to fend for themself often hit and badly injured by cars, abused by humans. For more info on their volunteer program click here.

They are also looking to have an adoption program for their doggies and you can be a valuable help in the process by being a flight volunteer.

If you know the one that should absolutely be mentioned here, let us know and we will include it.

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