Our team from ITC India regularly drive six hours through Ooty’s lush landscapes to Mysore’s industrial urban stretch, to reach the home of thousands of Tibetan Buddhist monks in India’s first established and largest Tibetan exile settlement.
WVS India are among only a handful of charities that have been granted access to Bylakuppe, and following a brief spay and neuter project with Vets Beyond Borders in 2015, WVS India are carrying on this important work. WVS ITC Director Ilona Otter has been leading an outreach clinic with teams of vets and vet nurses into the settlement in Bylakuppe since October 2017, called the Jamste Animal Birth Control and Anti Rabies Programme. The programme provides easy access to treatment for the animals belonging to the 70, 000 habitants of Bylakuppe.
Dr Ilona said, “Outreach clinics like the Jamtse project, where we work very closely with a small community, are important to educate people about rabies control and also to show them in action what animal welfare is, and how we can best promote it within our communities.”
In the last month, WVS vets have continued to provide aid in this region, following the reports of three positive rabies cases in Bylakuppe. Therefore, our team have been out increasing vaccinations in these areas of the settlement.
Sterilisation work has also continued with a total of 2,804 dogs operated in Bylakuppe since the programme begun!!
The recent heavy monsoon rains resulted in the team having to close the Jamtse clinic for couple of days because the became flooded; many areas in Bylakuppe were seriously affected by the heavy rains with animals becoming stranded by the floods. Work resumed shortly afterwards and the WVS team are now beginning discussions with the local authorities about the possibility of expanding the Jamste programme to another Tibetan settlement in Hunsur.
Due to the number of animals caught in the severe monsoon rains, the Jamtse clinic teamed up with HIS and CUPA to welcome rescued and injured dogs and provide temporary housing and care while they recovered from their injuries. During the first week of these rescues, 39 dogs were brought in. Our vets treated their injuries and vaccinated them against rabies; the dogs then stayed with WVS until their owners had been identified or they had been adopted.