The conditions of the working donkeys of Kathmandu Valley are as dark as those of the children who work there. It is believed 60,000 Nepalese children make a living by making bricks. No one knows how many donkeys are made to carry bricks all day, bearing loads above their capacity.
I reviewed a brick kiln in Siddhipur and was shocked, both with the conditions of human workers and the donkeys. Wounds go untreated, severy ill donkeys are left to die, and some even have their ears cut in childhood. No vet ever visits these places. All donkeys looked depressed.
The same week, a pair of donkeys was left to die at Kushunti, Patan. One survived and was called Asi, Hope. The Kathmandu Animal Treatment Centre kindlyrescued the surviving donkey after local children informed them. Thank you KAT and thank you children!
KAT’s founder Jan Salter says in an interview: “The brick factories destroy the surrounding vegetation so there is very little for the donkeys to eat. It appears that they are just forced to work until they drop. We need to educate the factory owners and workers in the care of these long suffering animals in the future. We hope that ‘Asi’ will become a symbol for the future wellbeing of all suffering working animals in Nepal.”
This silent suffering should be addressed. It’s time for all of us to ACT!