SPANA is a sight for Ziad’s sore eyes

Find out how SPANA’s veterinary team in Tunisia helped a horse suffering from the painful parasitic infection habronemiasis.

Ziad the horse and his owner, Anis, transport goods around the town of Foussana, in north-west Tunisia. The four-year-old horse pulls a heavy cart piled high with essential items for his local community. This dedicated work allows Anis to earn a small income.

When Anis noticed that small red sores had developed around his Ziad’s eyes, he became concerned for his beloved horse’s health. Fortunately, he knew that the SPANA mobile veterinary clinic was in Foussana and took Ziad there immediately.

After a careful examination, SPANA’s veterinary team diagnosed habronemiasis. This is a painful parasitic infection transmitted by flies that affects the area around the eyes or mouth of horses, mules and donkeys. The infection causes small but incredibly itchy sores to develop, which can be extremely painful and irritating for working animals.

To help Ziad, our vets administered an anti-parasitic treatment called Ivermectin, then gently cleaned his wounded skin. The vets advised Anis to rest his horse and to keep his sores clean while they were healing. Finally, they explained how Anis could prevent habronemiasis from returning by fitting Ziad with a fly fringe or face mask.

Anis said: ‘I am very thankful to SPANA. If they did not visit Foussana, I would not know how to get help and medicines for my horse.’

Sadly, the devastating impact of the global cost-of-living crisis, political instability and climate change are making life extremely challenging for working animals like Ziad. But thanks to the generosity of our supporters, our veterinary teams around the world are working hard to improve the welfare of working animals. Your continued support can ensure SPANA’s mobile clinics and centres are well stocked with medicines and veterinary equipment, and will help us to alleviate the pressures of poverty and climate change on working animals. You can find out more here. Thank you for caring for working animals.

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