Everyone Can Be A Hero

Two stories of local heroism touched our hearts back in March of this year. One involved a sinking ship and four scared, marooned kittens and the other a bus and a dog lost on the highway. In both instances, heroes didn’t hesitate to treat animals the same way we would hope someone would treat us if we were in need or in danger. We feel that these two stories deserve a place in our advocacy issue as reminders that we share our environment with more than just a multitude of other human beings and that we can make a difference in the lives of our furry friends when we make a conscious effort.

No Man Or Kitten Left Behind

At the start of March 2021, Thai Navy emergency services responding to a sinking fishing boat off the coast of Satun leaped into action to pull five crew members and, unexpectedly, four felines from the sea. Petty Officer First-Class Wichit Pukdeelon spotted the cats through his phone camera huddled together on a wooden beam on the stricken vessel just as navy rescuer Tasspon Sa-ei prepared to swim out to the capsized boat. Sa-ei’s subsequent actions would resonate around the world. Photos of him swimming back and forth between the vessels with kittens bedraggled but safe on his back tell a poignant visual story. The Thai Navy received praise from global animal rights group PETA (People for Ethical Treatment of Animals) for their kind-hearted act. “These sailors’ courageous and compassionate actions have made a splash with kind people around the world,” said PETA senior vice president Jason Baker. “PETA hopes their example will inspire everyone to keep an eye out for animals in danger and do whatever it takes to get them to safety.”

Every Dog Has Its Day

On March 30 2021, JS Traffic radio station received phone calls from drivers about a small dog stuck on the out-bound lane of the Si Rat expressway. It was the hottest time of day during the hottest time of year; the temperature was near 40 degrees Celsius and the dog was as much at risk of exhaustion, overheating and dehydration as being struck by a vehicle. Thankfully, Noknoi Seedam, the driver of the No. 166 public bus, and his passengers were aware of the animal in danger and spotted the dog on the highway. Seedam made the decision to open his doors to the vulnerable pup, having first asked his 10 or so passengers for their consent. “All of them smiled at my request and none of them complained about picking up the dog,” said the proud driver. The lucky pooch, it seems, didn’t mind either and hopped aboard without hesitation to find itself a cool and comfortable spot under a bus seat.