While the famous saying states that dogs are man’s best friends, Lithuanian couple Mantas and Rasa have turned it around. The couple has become the best friends of all the stray dogs living on Koh Kood island since they moved to Thailand six years ago. They fell in love not only with the island and relaxed locals, but with its canines as well, and have since adopted 15 strays. Mantas and Rasa are not only taking care of their adoptive pets, but also drive 40 km every day to feed strays, give them medicine, and do daily check-ups since there are no vets or animal rescues on the island. Scroll down for their story.

More info: Sabai Dog Koh Kood

A Lithuanian couple, Mantas and Rasa, came to Koh Kood island in Thailand 6 years ago as tourists

Image credits: SabaiDogKohKood

While you could easily think this is a story about people creating a shelter or an animal rescue, this is not. However, it might be even more wholesome. Mantas and his wife Rasa left their home country Lithuania six years ago to travel around Thailand. Little did they know then that they’d fall in love with the Thai island Koh Kood so much, they would decide to move there permanently.

They quickly fell in love with the island and felt it was just what they were looking for

Image credits: SabaiDogKohKood

At the beginning of their trip, they had to say their goodbyes via phone to their beloved boxer who stayed back in Lithuania

Image credits: SabaiDogKohKood

While they were still traveling, the couple lost their beloved ten-year-old boxer named Aibo, who was then back in Lithuania. “He became very sick and it was impossible to save him. It was a very hard time for us, we couldn’t be with him, all we could do was to say we love him on the phone. We were so broken,” they said. After the loss, they made the decision to stay in Koh Kood and adopt a local pup. While they had noticed dogs running around the island before, they were only able to fully comprehend how many stray dogs there are after permanently moving to Koh Kood. The couple also noticed that many of them were sick or injured.

He became very sick and passed away, leaving the couple devastated

Image credits: SabaiDogKohKood

However, when they started living there, the couple started noticing how many dogs there are on the island

Image credits: SabaiDogKohKood

The first dog they adopted in Koh Kood is Zuika, which is Lithuanian for “baby rabbit.” They also made a short trip back to Lithuania and brought their other dog, Rudis, to Thailand with them, since they knew they were there to stay. “At the moment, there are 15 adopted stray dogs living with us: 2 blind doggies, 4 with disabilities. All of them have their own stories—saved from death as a puppy, blind, paralyzed.”

Many of them were sick or injured, but the island has no animal shelter or a vet that could treat them

Image credits: SabaiDogKohKood

They made a decision and adopted their first pup named Zuika, which means “baby rabbit”

Image credits: SabaiDogKohKood

Taking care of such a big family is definitely not only sunshine and rainbows. “The landlord of our house, which we rented for many years, refused to extend our rent. We literally became homeless with our big family, as our former landlord was far from animal-friendly. But we now have a new place in a remote area of the island and are happy to be with our 15 doggos.”

Knowing they wanted to stay in Thailand, the couple made a short trip back to Europe and took their other dog named Rudis with them

Image credits: SabaiDogKohKood

The couple has adopted 15 stray pups since they started living in Thailand

Image credits: SabaiDogKohKood

The couple didn’t stop there and started looking out for other dogs on the island too. “We want to help Koh Kood dogs. For this purpose, my wife and I created Sabai Dog Koh Kood [their Facebook page]. The word ‘sabai’ in the Thai language means ‘happy.’ We want Koh Kood dogs to be happy and healthy,” Mantas writes on said Facebook page.

Two of their doggos are blind and four have other disabilities

Image credits: SabaiDogKohKood