Spared from a life of misery on the streets

Punk (left) with Marion and Starlette
Punk (left) with Marion and Starlette

A terrified puppy picked up on the streets of Thailand is in doggy heaven after finding a loving new home 6000 miles away in Cupar.

Punk, thought to be around a year old, has moved in with animal lover Marion MacDonald, and her other Thai dog, Starlette.

The pup made the 13-hour flight to Scotland from the Soi Dog Foundation in Phuket, which rescues dogs from unspeakable barbarity.

Many are even rescued from the meat trade – they’re illegally smuggled to Vietnam and tortured in the twisted belief that the more pain they suffer, the tastier their meat will be.

Marion (63) fell in love with Starlette when she volunteered at the Foundation, an experience that will be seared on her memory forever.

She paid for her to be flown to Scotland last year and she settled happily, forming a close bond with Marion’s other dog Skye.

Sadly Skye died earlier this year, leaving both Marion and Starlette distraught.

“I had been looking for a wee friend for Starlette, and when I saw that Punk had been flown to Scotland and needed a new home, I knew she was the one,” said Marion.

“Like Starlette she was very nervous and so stressed that she lost all her hair.

“But she’s slowly coming round - we’re taking it one day at a time and to see her and Starlette play together is wonderful.”

Soi Dog - which means ‘alley’ or ‘street’ dog in Thai - was founded 11 years ago by Dutch woman Margot Homburg Park and her friends Gill and John Dalley. They were horrified by the growing stray population of dogs in Thailand and the terrible suffering of those destined for the meat trade.

Now the Foundation employs 32 staff, including four full-time vets, but it could not continue running without the help of kind-hearted volunteers like Marion.

“Every time a dog is picked up it’s given a name starting with the next letter of the alphabet,” explained Marion.

“Punk was found on the streets with her brothers and sisters, and they were all given names beginning with the letter ‘P’.”

Thousands of dogs are rescued each year by the Foundation, and around six a month are flown into the UK to find their ‘forever’ homes.

Kind-hearted people unable to adopt a dog can help the charity’s work by sponsoring one through the website,

As well as offering hands-on help, Marion also raises money for the charity and sends practical items like collars, leads and bandages donated by caring Cuparians.

Donations can be handed in at Wilson and Partners’ veterinary surgery in Bonnygate.