Woman charged with animal cruelty after abandoning 42 kittens at the roadside


A Thai woman has been charged with animal cruelty and fined 10,000 baht after abandoning 42 kittens by the side of a road in Mai Khao, Phuket. The kittens were discovered by staff from Soi Dog Foundation, an animal welfare organisation which operates a sanctuary for stray dogs and cats in the district. Sadly, 12 of the kittens were found dead on arrival.

CCTV footage captured the incident which took place on October 6, 2023. In the video, ‘Ms.A’ can be seen removing the kittens from the cargo bed of her pick-up truck before fleeing the scene. The kittens had been crammed into small, uncovered cages and driven over 200 kilometres during a rainstorm. Veterinary checks confirmed that the surviving kittens were fatigued and dehydrated due to the distance travelled and exposure to adverse weather conditions.

During a subsequent investigation carried out by Soi Dog’s Social Change team, Ms.A confessed that she had taken the kittens from a temple in Surat Thani before embarking on the journey to Mai Khao. Soi Dog’s Social Change team visited the temple and discovered that the kittens had been under the care of a local monk. He provides daily support for temple cats and dogs, working alongside local volunteers to spay/neuter and vaccinate them. He was deceived by the intentions of Ms.A, who claimed that she had already found prospective owners for the kittens, and that she would be delivering them to their new homes.

When questioned, Ms.A claimed that she was unaware her actions were against the law and that she felt sorry for the kittens and merely wanted to help them.

Sakdapol Thongjan, Soi Dog’s Social Change Manager, reiterated that every dog and cat can live happily in their own community if there are animal feeders in the area to support them. In the interest of animal welfare, they should also be spayed/neutered and vaccinated to ensure that they are in good health and to protect everyone from the spread of disease, including rabies. Moving animals to a shelter does not provide a long-term solution for their care. He added: “We understand that Ms.A wanted those kittens to have better lives, but she went the wrong way about it, and the act of dumping them is illegal. Furthermore, driving them for such a long distance is an action without any concern for their welfare.”

Following the investigation, the Phuket Livestock Development Office filed charges against Ms.A under the Cruelty Prevention and Welfare of Animal Act. She pleaded guilty and received a 10,000 baht fine along with a criminal record.

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Goongnang Suksawat
Goong Nang is a News Translator who has worked professionally for multiple news organizations in Thailand for many years and has worked with The Pattaya News for more than four years. Specializes primarily in local news for Phuket, Pattaya, and also some national news, with emphasis on translation between Thai to English and working as an intermediary between reporters and English-speaking writers. Originally from Nakhon Si Thammarat, but lives in Phuket and Krabi except when commuting between the three.