Animal Nepal was established as a non-profit company in 2004 by Dutch journalist and long term resident Lucia de Vries together with friends Jessy and Maria Rai, Roselle Prisno and Jiggy Gaton.After teaming up with social activist and animal lover Pramada Shah, the organisation spread its wings and Animal Nepal was registered as an NGO in 2009. Lucia gradually handed over her responsibilities as a Director in the period 2014-2016.
Pramada Shah and her team continue to be supported by a professional, animal-loving, all women board. Seeing the dire condition of dogs in Lalitpur and recognizing the cruel methods (culling and poisoning) being utilized for their population management, AN initiated a Community Based Stray Dog Rescue & Release Programme called Humane Dog Management Programme. Which was started from 2008. The main objective of the programme is to create a healthy, reduced stray dog population in Kathmandu Valley through Animal Birth Control (ABC),Community- based education and Rehabilitation care.
Shocked by the condition of equines in brick factories, AN expanded its programme to include Working Equine. In 2010, A Working Equine Outreach Programme was established in Lalitpur with the support of The Donkey Sanctuary UK. In 2012, the outreach programme was extended to Nepalgunj- Nepal’s main equine bazaar, to address the root causes of the abuse and make a lasting change in the lives of Nepal’s working equines and their owners. In 2016, AN plans to further expand its Outreach programme t0 Dhading, Kavre and Gorkha.
Touched by the living and working conditions of the 200 domesticated elephants employed in anti-poaching units and safari tourism, AN initiated a Working Elephant Outreach Programme in 2014. Under the programme, AN conducts research and works directly with owners to create examples of good practices, such as chain free corrals and ‘humane safaris’.
Animal Nepal is also well known for its national campaigns in the areas of working animals, livestock transport and slaughter, elephant abuse, dog poisoning, humane zoo conditions and urban greenery. AN conducts awareness campaigns among school students and media representatives. AN also has strong advocacy presence and is actively working with the Government of Nepal to improve the lives of working animals.
Animal Nepal is managed by Mr. Uttam Kafle who is the Executive Director. Currently, Animal Nepal employs 19 staff members, including three vets. A Mobile Response Team (MRT) is in place for an effective response to sick and injured dogs (and sometimes, even cows and monkeys). The organization also operates one ambulance service for rescuing dogs and providing mobile treatments.
At Animal Nepal, we strongly believe that widespread animal cruelty can be reduced through awareness-raising and practical interventions and Nepal can ultimately become a model country for animal welfare in the region. We conduct three outreach programmes focusing on stray and community dogs; working equines; and working elephants. We also manage two rehabilitation centers cum sanctuaries: Chobar Animal Sanctuary in Chobar village and the Donkey Sanctuary based in Badhikhel village.