Treating the highly infectious skin disease epizootic lymphangitis (EZL) is a long process. Meet Buloh, a horse from Ethiopia at the very start of his treatment.
Buloh the horse helps his owner, Kanani, travel to and from the main market in Bishoftu, central Ethiopia, from their rural village. They make the one-hour journey together twice a week. Without Buloh’s help, Kanani would be unable to get to the market and buy the essential items she needs to support her family.
One day, Kanani became very concerned when she noticed some small sores on Buloh’s right front leg. Kanani knew from friends in her village that the sores could be epizootic lymphangitis (EZL), a highly infectious skin disease that can be deadly if it isn’t treated in time.
Buloh and Kanani travelled to SPANA’s veterinary centre in Bishoftu, where our veterinary team confirmed that Buloh was suffering from EZL. This painful fungal disease affects the skin and lymphatic system. It causes skin nodules to develop that can lead to highly infectious open ulcers. Without treatment, EZL can cause animals excruciating pain and debilitation, and some forms of the disease can be fatal.
Thankfully, Kanani had brought Buloh to SPANA very early on, and his condition was mild. Our vets cleaned Buloh’s nodules with water and antiseptic, carefully shaved the affected areas, lanced the nodules to remove any infectious material, then applied iodine to disinfect the sores and prevent the disease from spreading. The team gave Kanani some of the iodine solution and showed her how to treat Buloh – something she would need to do twice a day. As EZL is contagious, Kanani was shown how to do this hygienically, and was also advised to keep Buloh and his equipment away from other horses. She was also advised that Buloh would need to come to the centre once a week for at least six weeks for further treatment and monitoring of his disease.
Kanani said: ‘I’m very happy about SPANA. In my village, I heard that SPANA provided treatment for horses with EZL, so I brought Buloh here today. Thank you.’
Every day, our veterinary teams across the world meet many working animals suffering from excruciating diseases like EZL, or other dangerous zoonotic diseases. Thanks to your help, our vets have the medication and equipment they need to relieve these animals’ pain and help them recover. Your regular support is also helping us run vital training sessions in local communities so that the owners of working animals can identify the symptoms of deadly diseases and know when to come to SPANA for help. Your care for working animals is making such a difference – thank you so much for your support.