Yves the donkey was suffering from a swollen wound on his back and needed to stay at SPANA’s stables in Mali for treatment.
Yves is a vital part of his owner Chaka’s family. Just like many of the donkeys living in Bamako, Mali’s capital city, Yves works in the vast Badalabougou rubbish dump. Starting at sunrise, he works seven mornings a week transporting refuse and makes it possible for Chaka to earn a small income.
Yves receives good care from Chaka. His harnessing is checked regularly, but it is homemade and has been patched and repaired many times. Over time, the makeshift harness started to rub into Yves’ back, and the inadequate padding and loading caused pressure wounds to the tissues underneath. This had eventually led to an excruciating abscess developing, which was causing Yves severe discomfort.
Chaka was extremely concerned for Yves, so he took him to the SPANA centre in Bamako for treatment. At the centre, SPANA vets cleaned Yves’ wound and opened the abscess to release the infected material inside it. They gently flushed the area clean and applied some soothing cream. They then administered an anti-inflammatory injection to make him more comfortable. Because Yves would require daily treatment for some time, they admitted him to the centre’s stables.
SPANA operates stables at 16 centres across Africa, including in Mali. They provide free, lifesaving care to working animals like Yves in need of longer periods of treatment and recovery – whether it’s a horse seriously injured in a road traffic accident or a donkey suffering with tetanus.
During Yves’ stay at the stables, SPANA vets flushed and disinfected his wound every day. When he was not receiving treatment, Yves was very sociable and curious – happily joining in with the other donkeys and taking great interest in the vets’ activities!
Yves eventually made a full recovery. When he was well enough to go home, he was given some new and well-fitting harness equipment and the vets showed Chaka how to fit them correctly.
Chaka couldn’t thank the vets enough for their care of Yves. He said: ‘I need my donkey to earn a living and was so worried when he was ill. Thanks to SPANA, he is now able to come home.’
You can help working animals by becoming a Stable Sponsor. By sponsoring our stables with a monthly gift, you will play a special role in helping sick and injured working animals, like Yves, make a recovery. Your support will provide the expert treatment, medicines, food, rest and recuperation that these vulnerable animals urgently need.