You are here

Luke's October Update

Wed 1st Nov 2017

Rock and roll, another month has raced by! We've been achieving some awesome things in October, take a look!

Parcels and Volunteers

 58 parcels of power valued at over £23,000 were sent out this month. WVS teams were in Burma, Thailand, India, Grenada, Costa Rica and Gambia. There were two surgical training courses in Ooty – each with 12 Indian participants, one course in Goa and one in Thailand. It has been a big outreach month for WVS Thailand with an additional team heading over to support the elephant sanctuary at Boon Lott.


Over 1.4 million children have now gone through the MR Rabies education programme and we are expanding the lessons to try to drive a further increased moral perception towards dogs. This seems to be working and thanks to the diligence and professionalism of the teams, the results are uplifting. I love the case study about the 8-year old boy in Goa that is showcased in Gareth’s report. It shows that these educational programmes can make a difference beyond just rabies and that dog welfare is also championed.


Mission Rabies Goa – It is a hectic month for Goa as we are now in the midst of this year's annual focused vaccination drive. Over 10,000 dogs were vaccinated in October! As always, a tremendous thanks to the MR and WVS teams on the ground who are working so tirelessly, as well as the volunteers and our sponsors who are empowering such an amazing project to take place. Please read Julie's brilliant report and watch this year's epic video about the 2017 Goa project.

Hicks ITC – A huge thanks to Dr Michael Heath and his wife Dr Lisa Sander for their incredible generosity in supporting the Hicks ITC with a new digital x-ray. It is already a phenomenal help to the team and will benefit thousands of animals. Karlette and the team are flat out this month and I must also pass on our thanks as well to Nigel (as ever) for splitting himself in two and helping to run the Bardez vaccination drive as well. Karlette’s report is knockout. Please scan for an update on the outstanding work at the Hicks.

Ranchi – We have now finished the entire city this year. So that’s over 27,000 dogs vaccinated in the last 12 months (with over 70% coverage in all areas) and over 84,000 community members rabies educated by Praveen and his team. Amazing work!! Check out Praveen’s monthly report.

India – Ooty ITC – We wish Dr Samir the best of luck with his presentation at the Kerala Vet Science Congress in a fortnight. Dr Samir is presenting a case study on a urethrotomy and cystotomy in a Spitz. This case was also only possible thanks to the generosity of Dogs Trust in expanding their grant to equip the ITC in Ooty with both an X-ray and an ultrasound. Thank you hugely to our key sponsors for helping with this!!

Please also give our new ITC video a watch, for international students who might want to undergo a surgical training course!


Please see the below from Dr G:

8th – 17th October, Bunn Lott Elephant Sanctuary Mobile Clinic

Despite Katherine's unforeseen health issues and the slightly contorted logistic of moving around the volunteers, the mobile clinic was very successful, with the record (so far) of 312 animals neutered over 6 days of surgeries (104 dogs, 208 cats).

Katherine has been a lovely host, and we would really like to try and arrange one more mobile clinic before the end of the year, in synergy with a Finnish charity.

23rd – 31st October (ongoing), 12th ITC Surgery Course

This is a small group training course, only five, and rather heterogenic: 1 from Singapore, 1 from Korea, 1 from Spain, 1 from England and 1 from Colombia! If you add one volunteer vet from Iceland that currently lives in Oman and one RVN from UK you have a very good example of why it is interesting to work in such a context where you can have people from eight different nationalities (counting myself and the Thai staff of course – they are going to be 9 tomorrow when Dr Balaji will arrive) under the same roof working together and sharing experiences. “International” aspect aside, so far it has been a good, relaxed course, and the perfect chance for our two younger vets to start mentoring and monitoring surgeries, and for one of them (the very brave Dr Pim that started operating only 6 months ago) to carry on a proper demonstration of a orchiectomy in front of this small crowd.


In conclusion these are the ABC numbers for the current month of October:

  • 212 dogs neutered (104 during outreach and 108 at ITC)
  • 225 cats neutered (208 outreach and 17 at ITC)
  • Total sterilization: 437
  • Total vaccinations: 449


Dagmar's report is below! It is fantastic that the team have achieved over 13,000 vaccinations in the last 15 weeks! The work at the BSPCA is never-ending and Dagmar is now the sole veterinary care centre for the South of Malawi!  Inspiring work!

Other news

Kate was in Canada this month, representing Mission Rabies as well as giving two talks at the RITA conference. Thanks to Professor Charles Rupprecht for his support with this.

The MSD Fellows have been incredible in Malawi and have now finished their One Mission project looking at haemonchus in goats. Thank you to Kay, Nathalie, Anoushka for all their dedication and hard work, and of course to MSD Animal Health for supporting this. Thanks also to Eithne and Professor Sargison from Edinburgh for their phenomenal support and steer with the project implementation. Jo has also been outstanding and is now poised for her next mission to Armenia!

Also a very special thanks to Dr Ashley Banyard and the APHA team who supported Mission Rabies in such a huge way over World Rabies Day and also at the RITA conference. Conrad Freuling is proudly sporting Ash's running top at the conference! Ash ran 60km wearing a very high spec running vest and he and the APHA team raised us a ton of money which is tremendously appreciated and a big lift to the charity!

November promises to be a winner. Let’s get fired up and power on for the closing months of 2017!!! We want this to be our best year ever!!!!!

ROCK ON!!!!!!!!