1 Jan 2016– Animal Nepal’s inbox in 2015 remained filled with pleads from national and international visitors from Lumbini who were horrified to see the condition of local dogs inside and around the main monastery and surrounding areas. With no proper animal support group and organization, increasing dog population had led serious issues for the locals and visitors in the area. Dogs suffering from mange and other deadly diseases roaming around the territory and was another serious concern. That was when on July 2015 Monks and volunteers from Lumbini Social Service Foundation visited Animal Nepal with the hope of support for the Lumbini beings.
Located 22km west of Bhairawa, Lumbini is marked as the holy birth place of Siddhartha Gautama better known as the ‘Buddha’. Because of it’s huge religious significance Lumbini was granted World Heritage status by UNESCO in 1997. However, sick and helpless beings roaming under the prayer flags of beautiful monasteries was a complete no no! Hence, in response to the invitation from LSSF, Animal Nepal on the 1st of Jan headed to Lumbini with the team of 2 veterinarians, 2 technicians and a program coordinator for treatment and vaccination camp.
Partnering with LSSF, a 3-days mobile clinic was conducted where Animal Nepal team along with local volunteers covered Padaria village, Parsa and the areas inside and outside the main monastery of Lumbini. The camp treated a total of 155 animals where 59 of them were treated on the first day following 50 and 46 animals on the second and third day respectively. Among the treated ones 72 were the puppies, 81 adult dogs and 2 cats.
Animals were treated with Anti-rabies vaccine and Ivermectins for skin diseases caused by ticks, fleas and mange. They were also dewormed and emergency treatments were provided to few of them.
Bodi Sakyadita (Lori Dawn Forster), a nun who actively volunteered in treatment shared her feelings on the second day of camp, “There is this family of 3 tan and 1 black puppies with healthy tan mommy I have been concerned about living at Maya Devi temple since I arrived in Lumbini over a month ago. Today we treated this special family and likely the father too (black) who was hanging out with them.” She added, “We also treated a poor sweet dog with mange so chronic that she literally turned bald and crusty. She lives on the road to peace grove nunnery so I hope to keep track of her progress. Today our nunnery cat Lily was also treated as well as two other dogs that frequently visited our nunnery. This feels wonderful!”
LSSF is a non-profit organization founded and managed by the local Lumbini community who have expanded their work over the years to serve the rural communities of Lumbini in various strategic areas like access to education, health awareness, environmental conservation, and women’s empowerment.
The collaboration of LSSF and Animal Nepal turned out to be a huge success. This programme in coming years aim to get much bigger and much effective covering even more animals. Major issue recorded as the increasing dog population and aggression in the mother dogs due to which the catching became more stressful. However, Animal Nepal aims to address the problem very soon by conducting an Animal Birth Control programme at the very place.
New year for Animal Nepal undoubtedly turned out to be fruitful and memorable. With the fresh new energy and all the blessings from holy land of Lumbini, we hope 2016 turns out to be the golden year for Animal Nepal and our fellow animals.