Mother & baby elephants arrive at the elephant sanctuary in Mae Chaem, Thailand

Posted by WorkingAbroad Projects on Wednesday, 13th August 2014

Baby elephant Boon arrives to Mae ChaemThe last few months have been a whirlwind, as the rain started to fall bringing back the lush greenery into the reserve and bringing a strong energy with it. The elephants love this time of the year with all the mud to roll in, but for us it has been a bit of a roller coaster of ups and downs.

Unfortunately we had to say goodbye to our disabled dog Kao. Kao took a bad turn in the early hours on the 5th of July and passed away suddenly. We are all in shock as he was doing so well and learning to trust again, after he had been beaten in the village he lived in. We held a little burial for him and memorial to pay our respects.

Our other recently rescued animals are doing well however. Tiny, ginger kitten ‘Ginnie’ who was rescued back in June no longer has an infected paw and it has healed nicely. Incredibly our disabled girl Mollie is now walking! Mollie was rescued last year after her owner had tried to drown her in the river. When we got her she had severe spinal trauma and it was believed she would never walk again. But now we can proudly say she is taking steps for herself!

Excitingly we also have an update on the privately owned elephants Kham Mee and Baby Boon. They are a mother and her baby in desperate need of rest and medical care. Baby Boon has an inflamed eye and the owner is worried that he will go blind if he doesn’t receive the right care. Kham Mee also has badly damaged feet and is very tired. Unfortunately we cannot travel the 65km+ daily to provide their medical care so we sought to move them to our sanctuary.

After Dr Sak made the trip to assess their health, it was agreed the best thing was for the elephants to get some time in a quiet place to rest and recuperate. Finally after discussions with the owner we agreed upon a rental period of a year for the two elephants, with the hopes of securing a longer term agreement in the future.

Elephants walking on a muddy path in ThailandYou might be wondering why we rent the elephants and do not buy them from their owners. We rent them so as not to contribute further to the elephant trade. We have found that by buying an elephant it can mean the fee paid is then used to buy another elephant usually ripped away from its mother at a young age. It doesn’t mean we will never buy an elephant, but we aim to inspire positive change and not further the trade.


Kham Mee and Baby Boon arrived safely with us on the 18th of July after a long walk with them. They seemed happier almost instantly, receiving some good feed and a well earned rest. Our other elephants Mae Kam and Mae Jumpee arrived home from a walk in the forest to a huge surprise! Although they seemed nervous at first they have stayed calm and just kept their distance and we hope to see some interactions happening between them soon. As you can see in the photos the rains have definitely brought a lot of activity for us. We are still very excited about our two new arrivals and hope they will settle in well with us and we can get their health back up.You might be wondering why we rent the elephants and do not buy them from their owners. We rent them so as not to contribute further to the elephant trade. We have found that by buying an elephant it can mean the fee paid is then used to buy another elephant usually ripped away from its mother at a young age. It doesn’t mean we will never buy an elephant, but we aim to inspire positive change and not further the trade.

Kham Mee and Baby Boon arrived safely with us on the 18th of July after a long walk with them. They seemed happier almost instantly, receiving some good feed and a well earned rest. Our other elephants Mae Kam and Mae Jumpee arrived home from a walk in the forest to a huge surprise! Although they seemed nervous at first they have stayed calm and just kept their distance and we hope to see some interactions happening between them soon. As you can see in the photos the rains have definitely brought a lot of activity for us. We are still very excited about our two new arrivals and hope they will settle in well with us and we can get their health back up.


 

For more information on our Thailand Elephant Volunteer project please click here.


Author: WorkingAbroad Projects

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