Hand to Paw temple outreach – Chiang Mai, Thailand

By Joy Huss, Founder – Hand to Paw

When I rode my bicycle Htoh-1past Daisy, a temple dog, emaciated, anemic, bleeding from her nose and vagina suffering from a TvT tumor I just had to do something. She lay in front of the Wat Nongplaman temple, all alone  listless in the middle of a bustling crowd. She was not hated, not loved, not seen – simply treated with indifference.

Finding Daisy at the gate outside the temple walls was the first steps toward the creation of the Hand to Paw Temple Dog Outreach program for the dogs that reside in our community temples.

Through Daisy we witnessed a true miracle of recovery. One could never imagine that a dog in such a desperate medical condition could become a healthy, vibrant dog again. Sick, alone and unloved, Daisy came to know the touch of a soothing hand, the taste of hand-fed food and the sound of gentle words to help her through her long and difficult convalescence. She is our “happy ending story” as well as one of the inspirational examples from which Hand to Paw Temple Outreach Program evolved and continues to pursue.

Click the + to continue reading the story of how Hand to Paw got started...

FoodAid-9In Thailand, each temple has its own personal dynamics: village prosperity, dog population, number of monks and living conditions all contribute to these individual environments and each temple dog has a story of abandonment, neglect, injury, illness and or cruelty. Hand to Paw recognizes these distinctions and works to find the appropriate solutions that best work for each individual temple – not only to meet essential daily needs, but to work toward a brighter future.

Education, vaccinations, spay/neutering, monthly dry food, protection, adoptions-fostering, fundraising, puppy care and necessary medical and emergency treatments for these street and temple dogs are but a few of the goals we look to accomplish – all provided solely by our fundraising efforts. Our long-term goal is to educate both students and locals against animal cruelty and stress the importance that dog sterilizations, immunizations and basic healthcare can have on our community.

One of Hand to Paws biggest successes has been our student volunteer program which serves as a popular after-school curriculum for Prem Tinsulanonda International School students ranging from grades 6-12. With dedication and perseverance this “hands-on” educational program was created to recognize the plight of the temple dogs of Thailand and to promote a sustainable, healthy dog population at the temples in our surrounding community.

Hand to Paw is made up of a small group of animal-loving, service oriented volunteers and students who believe that temples are an integral part of their community and the dogs that reside within those grounds are a community responsibility. With love and care we hope to provide these homeless street dogs a secure and healthy environment in which to live.01

I am American-born, world-raised, my husband, I and our seven rescued Thai street and temple dogs have called our home “Thailand” for the past 8 years. My previous years of experience volunteering with two dog rescue organizations in Thailand is what helped prepare me to work with abandoned, sick and abused dogs living in a temple environment. I independently began working with temple dogs six years ago  Slowly over the course of six years Hand to Paw has expanded from caring for one temple dog to the long-term welfare of over 80 dogs in nine temples as well as numerous “downtrodden dog” community outreach projects.

Our Facebook page – Hand to Paw – serves as a successful tool to provide our supporters with daily and weekly temple updates, our achievements, our losses and action photos. Please check us out for more of our accomplishments and BECOME A FAN!

Seeing the hurt that others just walk past”.

shelter-aid-1 Become a Hand to Paw  Shelter Aid supporter, you will be providing long term support to help rescue & care for the temple dogs of Chiang Mai Thailand…

Donate here to support the temple dogs for just $22 a month…



In Thailand temples are the refuge, of many street dogs. It is common for Thai people to dump their unwanted dogs at a temple, they reason that the monks will look after them. Although this is better than dumping them on the street many temples are overrun with unwanted dogs. The monks often don’t have the money or the time to look after them, sterilisation is not seen as important so the problem just grows.It is not enough just to feed them, they need medication, flea, tick & birth control, this all cost money. Long term it needs education so the local people understand that they must be responsible for their animals…This is where Shelter Aid can help, funding programs to give temple dogs a better life & teaching school children to respect animals… FoodAid-8
shelter-aid-1 Make a one off Donation of your choice & help Hand to Paw rescue & care for the Temple dogs of Chiang Mai Thailand…

Make a One Off Donation to help Hand to Paw…




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Email: spikejoy7dogs@gmail.com
Facebook:https://www.facebook.com/pages/Hand-to-Paw/282948003501

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2 Comments

    • Fran Stent

      If only there was more people like Joy the world would be a better place, thank you for your love for these dogs. We. Take there loyalty and love for granted and treat them like garbage, people are so selfish and cruel it makes my heartache,thank you again.

    • jasprit mangat

      i appreciate the love and care for animals.It should be done by every one of us.

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