Safe handling of street dogs

In Western Europe it is quite rare to see stray dogs on the street. However, some of Southeast Asia’s most popular tourist destinations have large numbers of stray animals and little is being done to address the problem or control populations.

Local locals are used to dealing with stray dogs and cats because they live with them. However, visitors who are not so used to stray animals should be aware of the dos and don’ts.

Many stray dogs are very friendly, especially in tourist areas – they are used to human contact and often receive food and attention from people in the community. However, you can also be unlucky enough to meet less friendly dogs. Typically, these are dogs that have had little human contact, or the contact they have had has made them suspicious. When dogs are frightened, they may try to defend themselves, their litter, their food, or their territory. You should always keep this in mind and avoid any kind of confrontation with dogs where you run the risk of being bitten.

When a dog barks at you from afar, he is warning you to stay away from his territory. If you keep quiet, keep a reasonable distance and walk past slowly, you are unlikely to get into trouble. If in doubt, you should avoid any confrontation. If a dog starts chasing you while you’re jogging or riding your bike/motorcycle, don’t speed up – that would only encourage the dog to chase you and put you and the pet at a higher risk of an accident or injury . The best response is to either stop and wait for the dog to move away, or proceed very slowly. The chances of a dog chasing you are much less if you walk slowly and calmly.