Man standing next to camel
Man standing next to camel

One treatment saves two lives in India

SPANA vets in India were delighted to see labourer Durga and his camel Hira return to their clinic a year after a terrible injury had nearly cost the animal his life.

But the initial care provided by the team ultimately impacted not just one animal but two. Read how a young owner was able to rescue a second camel thanks to our lifesaving treatment.

SPANA vets first met Hira and his 28-year-old owner Durga when he was brought to the Pushkar camel festival with a broken jaw following an attack by an older camel. The seven-year-old camel was in a great deal of pain and couldn’t eat or drink as a result of his injuries.

Hira the camel surrounded by more camels waiting to be treated

Dr Swami and his team of SPANA-funded vets came to the rescue. In blazing heat, they worked tirelessly to reset the camel’s mandible and administer painkillers. Risking kicks and bites from the understandably upset Hira, the team was able to ease his pain and administered fluids to prevent the camel from getting seriously dehydrated. They sent Durga and Hira off with instructions on how to care for his healing jaw and how to avoid future camel attacks. Durga promised to give his beloved camel plenty of rest while he recuperated, only working him when he had fully healed.

A year on, the team was delighted to see both camel and owner return to their three-day mobile clinic. It’s always encouraging to see owners return to these clinics as it means that they are taking the time and effort to continue looking after their working animal’s wellbeing. Across this region of northern India, SPANA’s reputation is beginning to spread as we treat more and more camels every year.

Hira’s visit gave the vets an opportunity to check up on him and make sure his injuries had healed well. They were very pleased to see that the mandible fracture had repaired itself thanks to their work and that the camel was back to a healthy weight. Without this intervention, Hira would have surely died of starvation and Durga couldn’t express his gratitude enough, saying:

Hira the camel and her owner
May god bless SPANA and its supporters – this is the only treatment of its kind in Pushkar.
Durga

Durga uses his camel to transport vegetables from the fields outside of Pushkar to the local market, collecting a small fee for every load he delivers. Thanks to Hira’s renewed health, over the course of the last year Durga had been able to save up enough money to buy a second camel from a trader. When Durga first saw the young male, named Kanish, the camel was covered in mange and was underweight and dehydrated.

Hand full of camel medicines

Durga knew that with the right care and support from SPANA he could nurse this camel back to full health, so immediately rescued the animal and brought him to the clinic alongside Hira. The vets provided anti-parasitic treatment and treated the worst wounds caused by the mange with topical antibiotics before giving the animal a full check-up. With the same time and care that Durga gave Hira, Kanish will make a full recovery and go on to support his owner and family.

As our message of care and compassion for all working animals spreads via our centres, mobile clinics and education programmes, working animals like Hira and Kanish can live healthier and more productive lives, which in turn support individuals and communities.

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