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How to interact with Thailand's local critters

In your wildest dreams do you imagine touring around Thailand and moseying past some of the country's most exciting wildlife? With all the different animals you're bound to run into on your trip, this beautiful country feels like you're on set of an exotic movie.

Indeed, there are some seriously amazing creatures to behold, but there are also just as many that are better observed from a distance. When it comes to viewing animals in their natural habitat, most - if not all - should come with a 'look, but don't touch' policy. However, there are a few specific things you should be aware of before heading out on your vacation with the family. Follow these guidelines for a safe and happy trip to Thailand!

Do not feed the stray dogs

One of the first things many notice about Thailand is its immense population of stray dogs. Naturally, seeing a hungry dog will tug at the heartstrings of any animal lover, but they're best left alone. You don't know the temperament or health of the animal, so avoid these pups as best you can.

Be aware of mothers and their babies

If you come across a baby animal that appears to be alone, anyone's first instinct might be to pick it up or try to take a selfie with it. Don't do this. Mothers can be very protective and it's rare that a young animal is ever far from her. If she finds you holding her offspring she'll do what she needs to do to protect it.

Avoid animal attractions in general

It's time to address that elephant in the room. Unfortunately, this attraction - and many like it - is bad for the welfare of the animal. Street performance animals such as monkeys that are trained to pose in pictures with you, are often subjected to serious mistreatments. If you're a true animal lover, you should do your best not to support these practises.

Never go on a tour without an expert leader

If you want to experience all the amazing wildlife in Thailand with the whole family, then participating in a tour is certainly the best option. However, you probably don't need to be reminded that many of the most beautiful creatures can also be very dangerous. This means you need to ensure you're taking your family on a reputable tour with a professional guide. Not only will that service be able to get you to more animals, but they'll keep you safe.

Many of these guidelines are similar to those you would follow around your neighbourhood. Always ask before you pet and follow the advice of the professional and your family will have an amazing trip!