Fauji the camel gets important treatment from the SPANA vets.
Bagwan works with his 15-year-old camel, Fauji, in the Jaipur district of India. Together, they transport grains and pulses from rural farms to the wholesale market, walking along sandy roads and the main highway under the hot Rajasthani sun.
One day, Bagwan noticed that Fauji wasn’t eating much of his food. He suspected Fauji was suffering from parasites. Bagwan was well aware of the complications this could cause if left untreated and knew he needed to get Fauji to the SPANA team as soon as possible.
SPANA’s mobile clinic regularly visits the wholesale market to treat the local camels, so Bagwan made sure he was waiting when they arrived early in the morning.
He explained his predicament to Dr Swami, who made a diagnosis, considering the fact that Fauji had not been dewormed in a long time and that winter is usually when parasites are common. He inspected Fauji’s body condition and found eggs in his faeces, which confirmed Bagwan’s suspicions that internal parasites were the cause of Fauji’s lack of appetite. Dr Swami administered anti-parasite treatment.
The SPANA vets also gave Fauji a humane plastic nosepeg to replace the traditional wooden nose pegs that easily splinter and lead to infections. The team also fitted reflectors onto the back of Bagwan’s wooden cart to make it more visible to vehicles on the roads at night. Road accidents are sadly a significant danger to working camels in Rajasthan.
Fauji, which means soldier in Hindi, is critically important to Bagwan, who said, ‘I called him Fauji because he is always so loyal and stoic. I have been with him all of his life. Before the SPANA vets were here, I used to give home remedies to my camels, but this treatment is far more effective. It’s great to have professionals who come regularly.’