Come take a tour of our Todo Santos Rabies Campaign
This week, we are proud to be welcomed back to Todos Santos, Guatemala for our annual rabies campaign in partnership with The Global Alliance For Animals and People (the GAAP). Our mission here is to improve the health and welfare of the dogs and cats in this community, to teach empathy and responsible pet ownership, as well as the importance of preventing rabies, a fatal
disease that can be transmitted to both animals and people. Each year when we come back it seems that there are less dogs on the street, more dogs wearing collars and more dogs with an improved body condition. We start the campaign with two days of education where we work with the local school as well as municipality to invite the children to participate in various activities that enhance their love and understanding of animals and animal behavior.
Pin the vaccine on the Cat!
Dr.Maria Brömme and nurse Nicola help the children with a matching game about responsibile pet ownership.
Paola smiles for the camera with Marvin, who loves his cat Manchas so much he asked Paola to write his name on his arm!
The past 3 days was spent running our comminity animal clinic where we vaccinate approximately 150 animals and sterilize 50 daily. It takes an extraordinary team of doctors, nurses, assistants who come from all over North America to run this campaign. We come together to devote their skills and time to help this community that otherwise would not have vet care. Our goal here is to build capacity so that in the next couple of years we will no longer be needed. The GAAP spent last week training local community leaders in animal handling, restraint, and IV catheter placement so that Guatemalan veterinarians can come here and have assistance to restrain the dogs which has been there number one challenge. Our goal is to educate and empower the communities that we work in so that attitudes and behaviors that are driving the problems can improve. We do not sterilize dogs or cats that do not have owners as we think it is important that the community understand the value of sterilization but just as importantly, the importance of feeding and vaccinating their pet, keeping it on a leash, and giving them fresh water and shelter.
The government is also on board where in the event someone’s pet bites a person, and is not vaccinated, they must pay the victim as well as the government a $750 fine!
Dr. Scarlett with nurse Jennifer recovering a cold patient. We often use space blankets and boiled water to keep IV fluids warm!
Meet Tiko, an adorable 2 year old Beagle whom we nutured last year, returning for his annual rabies vaccine with his best friend Minor.
Minor’s uncle Edgar, talks to our volunteer Paola about how much he appreciates our rabies program in partnership with the Global Alliance for Animals and People because if Tiko bites a person he has to pay the victim $715 as well as $715 to the municipality!
Animal nurse Feliza teaches future veterinarian Roxanna how to check a dog’s heart rate while Dr. Amy cantor performs surgery.
Stay tuned for more as our team shares their experience in the coming weeks!