Spay and Neuter Clinic in Las Terrenas and Sanchez with Claudia Bretthauer October
In 2017 Claudia Bretthauer and her team went twice for us to the Caribbean, in January to Grenada and in October to Las Terrenas and Sanchez in the Dominican Republic. A lot of spay and neuter clinics have been held there already in the past. Also Claudia Bretthauer was here in 2009. But lately there have been no operatives and the number of pregnant bitches and unwanted puppies has increased noticeably. Claudia Bretthauer received a call for help from Patricia Jakobs when she was in Grenada. Actually we had planned to combine the operative with our next clinic in Grenada on Easter 2018 but in the Caribbean „island-hopping“ by plane is very difficult, time-taking and costly. There are few direct connections and most flights go via Panama or Miami. Therefore we decided to hold the clinic in October despite having very little money on our account. In only five weeks our friends and sponsors helped us to generate the necessary means for medication and surgical materials!
A taxi was awaiting Claudia, her sons and the team when they landed in the night of 10/25 and took them to the house of a Dutch resident The current broke down upon their arrival. After a nap of about an hour they continued…
…to the holiday apartment in a beautiful modern resort that was going to be their home for the next week.
Claudia Bretthauer commented: „Life could go on like this…“
Then they went to see the small clinic of Lucilu Medina Laureano and Elias Rafael Jimenez, both vets from Puerto Rico.
Patricia Jacobs had organized the operative perfectly.
Local media and flyers informed the people where and when the clinic would take place. The surgeries were free of charge, donations were welcome.
Claudia Bretthauer and her helpers set up the tables…
…and began to operate immediately.
A plastic sheet was used to enlarge the waiting area…
…and offered shade to the patients…
…and their owners.
The clinic has several large kennels and one of them served as recovery.
The vets from Puerto Rico anesthetized the animals for Claudia Bretthauer and 3 veterinary technicians were always ready to help…
…not only at the clinic but also with their moto conchos when transportation was needed.
21 animals were spayed and neutered that day…
…13 bitches, 5 males…
…and 3 cats.
One lady brought 5 Chihuahua bitches at once, 2 of them quite ferocious.
Dinner was served in a beautiful restaurant…
…every night after work.
Each day a different restaurant sponsored a delicious meal for the team!
The following 3 days they worked in Las Terrenas.
An American veterinary technician donated her entire vacation to the operative.
She took care of the patients in the recovery.
Also a vet tech from Canada came on several days.
He always stayed for a couple of hours.
Together they looked after the recovering patients…
…and gave them shots with antibiotics and pain killers.
40 animals were spayed and neutered on Friday, 29 bitches, 3 males…
…6 cats and 2 tom cats: One of them was brought by his owner together with 3 of the queens.
2 of the bitches 1 male, 1 cat and 1 tom cat were spayed and neutered by Dr. Jimenez.
On Saturday they operated 27 animals, 19 bitches, 3 males and 5 cats – Dr. Jimenez spayed 5 bitches - and on Sunday they did also 27 surgeries: 12 bitches, 7 males, 5 cats and 3 tom cats.
One of the tom cats weighed 5.5 kilos, for the Caribbean a real giant!
Dr. Jimenez spayed a bitch and 2 cats and neutered 3 male dogs and a tom cat.
On Sunday the hundredth surgery was performed.
And here he is, patient No 100!
There wasn’t much time for relaxation during this operative. Only at dusk the team had a glimpse of the beach…
Many bitches were pregnant, 70 foetuses were taken out altogether.
15 bitches had brittle wombs due because of too many pregnancies, 15 suffered from pyometra. Had they not been spayed at this point they would have suffered a horrible death shortly. Many bitches had short ligaments which makes the surgeon’s job more difficult, with 5 of them ligaments tore and one with one a blood vessel at the ligament broke.
The most common diseases were Ehrlichiose, Anaplasmose, Babiose, everything that can be transmitted by ticks as usual in the Caribbean. Because of that many of the dogs were bleeders.
Especially the puppies…
…suffered from worms.
Eight of them landed under the scalpel of Claudia Bretthauer.
An older bitch had a stroke and Claudia was afraid that she might die but Patricia Jakobs reported that the bitch has recovered surprisingly well. There was only one death; an old bitch that had already many cysts.
4 dogs had to be treated with burns caused by boiling water or acid that had been poured over them because they had begged at restaurants! 3 dogs had chains grown into their necks hat had to be removed. Here education helped! Claudia Bretthauer explained to the owners what to do and when she saw her patients next time they wore collars.
On Monday they went to Sanchez.
There they worked in a red-cross station.
The working conditions weren’t quite as good as in Las Terrenas. Clean water was lacking but the red-cross helper was very eager to assist and the vet from Sanchez enjoyed the visit of this experienced German colleague.
He sent patients and came sometimes to discuss a diagnosis or get a medical advice.
Anais, a student of veterinary medicine, monitored the anesthesia.
The first patient in Sanchez…
On the first day in Sanchez 3 bitches were spayed and 1 male was neutered.
Every animal received a form at the reception…
…with information about species, sex, owner and, most important for the right dose of medication, the animal’s weight.
This sheet accompanied the animal through the whole process of surgery until it woke up again.
Also in Sanchez the Chihuahua is the favorite Dominican pet.
Patricia Jakobs had to work during the week. On Tuesday the team started on their own in direction Sanchez. Unfortunately nobody had told them that there were different bus stops for getting on and off. They took the wrong bus and got an unintended sightseeing tour through the region.
Despite this delay 35 animals were spayed and neutered on Tuesday…
…28 bitches, 2 males…
…4 cats and a tom cat!There was no bus on Wednesday but a pick up could be organized for the transport.
…and 5 cats lost their fertility on that last day in Sanchez.
Thursday, November 2nd, one day before departure, the team was back in Las Terrenas.
A day off? No way! Also on the very last day of the operative 34 animals were spayed and neutered, 27 bitches, 6 males and one cat, 7 bitches and 3 males by Dr. Jimenez.
Vet tech Sonja sewing up a patient…
219 in total in 8 days – a terrific result! And we are of course also very happy that so many of them were bitches – 151! A big Thank you to all that participated! We are certain that this hasn’t been the last operative in Las Terrenas and Sanchez!
Dr. Susanne Vogler was this year for the 5th time in the Dominican Republic. Since 2012 she comes every year, only 2016 she couldn’t leave Germany. This year the Association for Aid and Support of the Creole Dogs couldn’t add anything to help financing the operative, our account being in a deplorable state but that didn’t stop Dr. Vogler. She paid for everything herself. But we do hope to operate here also in the future because our first voluntourism project shall start here. Voluntourism - the idea comes from North America and offers tourists opportunities to do more during their holidays than lie on the beach or go sightseeing but to return home with the feeling to have done something meaningful . Apparently this quickly becomes a great success in the tourist industry but there are also critical voices because most offers are in the fields of humanitarian aid where actually professionals are needed on a long-term base and not tourists as participants of a short excursion. Few offers exist in animal welfare up to now although here are many opportunities for tourists to provide real invaluable help. In the Caribbean exists so far only the program of the St. John Animal Care Center on the smallest of the US Virgin Islands St. John: Hikes with shelter dogs where tourists get to know the beauty of the island and the dogs enjoy being taken for a walk. Voluntourism shouldn’t get mixed up with volunteering in a project which takes some abilities and more time than the average tourist has. Voluntourism is an opportunity for a couple of days during a normal vacation to get to know the country and also its problems in a special way, to experience the wonderful work done by idealistic helpers already to improve the situation and to add a bit to this work. In animal welfare there are many possibilities to realize this in a meaningful and effective way.
Our voluntourism program will offer 3 excursions:
Visit of the shelter Moringa’s Mission…
…and at special dates also of spay & neuter clinics.
Community outreach: A tour with animal welfare activist Marina Jellinek to the street animals of a poor community…
…and to the animals of poor families providing food and medication.
Excursions on horseback with Ute Mann and the horses of the Rancho El Contento to visit poor animals in lonely villages that can’t be reached in any other way.
Animal-loving tourists will have the opportunity to experience animal welfare in their holiday paradise first-hand and actively participate in it. They will see how the excursion fees benefit the poor animals they visit and how much help that brings to the small Caribbean animal welfare organizations that are facing such great tasks – a support that we can’t give with our limited budget.
In March 2015 there was already a clinic at EL Contento with Dr. Vogler who loves going horseback riding herself…
…and enjoyed the excursions with Ute Mann very much.
Also this time she stayed for 2 days at El Contento but operated at Moringa’s Mission.
Dee Morrison has founded the small shelter in 2014 after having participated for years in A.A.A.S spay & neuter clinics as veterinary technician, flying back and forth from Canada until she moved to the Dominican Republic for good.
With her came her Great Dane Axel.
Her brother-in-law, vet Dr. Brent Babcock, comes regularly to spay and neuter and has often worked together with Dr. Vogler. He also equipped the small clinic of Moringa’s Mission with 2 inhalation machines for anesthesia.
Besides dogs and cats there are goats, a donkey…
…and sometimes cows stroll in for a visit.
Many animals arrive ill…
…and are being taken care of until they find their forever home.
Dee says: “I live in the middle of Sabaneta. People find the way to Moringa’s Mission easily.“
Especially the children come. Dee tries to help also them with food, clothing and material needed for school. Donations for children are always welcome.
At Moringa’s Mission children learn to be kind to animals…
…and to treat them right.
Dr. Vogler spayed and neutered here on the 22th and 23rd February. Dee’s house turned into a clinic during these days.
2 tables were set up, one for the prepping and one for the surgeries with the inhalation machine in the back.. Strong lamps (that made it harder to photograph) provided excellent light for the surgeon.
The waiting room in front of the surgery…
12 dogs were scheduled for the first day, 11 were brought in.
Gene Hackman started years ago as animal lover and volunteer. In the meantime he has completed training to become a veterinary technician in the States and inserts a tube perfectly at the first attempt.
Dr. Vogler spayed 10 bitches and neutered one male that day.
Every dog got a rabies vaccination.
There were beds for dogs that needed an infusion or other special care after surgery.
The second day 12 bitches and 2 males came, and a tom cat that turned out to be a cryptorchid.
Dr. Vogler is watching her helpers – everything is running perfectly well.
Some of the bitches that day were pregnant, others very young, only 3 months old. They all were spayed without any complications.
Afterwards Dr. Vogler moved to Perla Marina near Sosúa and spayed and neutered the next three days for the A.A.A.S. in Sosúa Abajo…
…in the training room of the cab driver association together with 8 vets from the US, the Geo Veterinaries, and the Dominican vet Dra Gisselle Santos from Santiago.
Four organizations participated in the operative; A.A.A.S., GARF, Save our Scruff and Geo Veterinaries.
Geo Veterinaries were founded by Dr. Joe Zulty, formerly a member of the World Vets. Dr. Vogler had worked with him several times before and had always enjoyed it.
The Save our Scruff team worked very hard and helped a lot during the entire operative.
Marina Jellinek has been there for us and reports:
AAAS and World Vets held an operative here already a couple of years ago. This location opposite of the fire station of Charamicos has the advantage to be quieter because it is not directly at the busy street and people can be kept out of the surgery area.
6 tables were set up for 9 vets including Dr. Susanne Vogler and Giselle Santos (Hacienda Urbana, Santiago). Counting all the volunteers there were 40 people participating.
The table with the instruments… and the one with all the medication…
Two tables for prepping…
Everything was a little bigger here, also the recovery, in expectation of many patients.
This lady took care of food and beverages for the team and she did a very good job.
There was a team for cats only that did everything from the reception, preparing the medication up to the post-operative care and statistics. That was a great help for those who took care of the dogs.
After the shaving…
…all loose hair is being removed.
Control of a patient’s information sheet: Have all the meds been prepared correctly?
Ready for the transport to the recovery…
…where experienced cat lovers await the sleeping patients.
A new combination of anesthesia was used for the dogs…
…consisting of Zoletil 100 mg (Telazol) + Nalbuphine 2,5 mg + Dexdormitor 2,5 mg instead of the formerly used pre-medication of Torbugesic + Acepromazin. Dr. Joe Zulty mixed the drugs himself. 0,03 ml per kilo was injected intramuscularly which sent the dogs to sleep peacefully.
All animals received antibiotics and painkillers subcutaneously according to weight and DHPPL + rabies vaccination later on in the recovery.
All dogs were intubated…
…or attached to the inhalation machine during surgery.
Dra Gisselle Santos spaying a cat.
Another cat, the surgeon can easily be recognized as Dr. Vogler…
Dr. Vogler in her element…
spaying non-stop one patient after the other…
All around her…
…the vets of GeoVeterinaries do the same…
Spaying of a bitch…
Neutering a male…
Dr. Vogler has a bleeder on the table…
Stephanie monitoring the anesthesia…
Dr. Vogler spays already the next cat while Dr. Zulty is reading the patient’s sheet.
Stephanie assisting Dr. Vogler
The recovery has filled up!
Francine, long-term volunteer at AAAS and always in charge of preparing the medication was suffering from pyelitis and a tremendous backache. Still she worked all 3 days at the clinic. 47 dogs and 15 cats were spayed and neutered on 02/24.
The next day Negrito was brought, a black male Chihuahua- mix of approximately 6 months.
He had been hit by a car 2 days ago. His right hind leg was crushed and he was in extreme pain. He got treated immediately.
Dr. Zulty looking at Negrito’s leg. It can’t be saved.
Negrito being prepared for surgery..
Hair is being removed after shaving.
Judy is intubating Negrito herself.
Dr. Zulty bandaging the injured leg.
Ready for the amputation
Dr. Zulty and Dra Gisselle…
…perform the surgery together.
The wound is getting sewn up.
Having to do an amputation is always sad but the best for the animal. Negrito would have never been able to use the leg again and the danger of a sepsis was very great, Dogs do really well on 3 legs. They don’t feel handicapped at all.
Vader, a male Great Dane weighing 55 kg, 3 years old, was brought to be neutered. His current owner had gotten him from someone who had left the country. He hopes that Vader will gain weight after neutering and maybe get rid of his skin issues.
Vader receives the pre-medication on the floor.
Everything is a little bigger here, also the tube…
Judy inspects the giant…
After surgery Vader had problems to wake up and needed Antisedan / Reversal. Then he started to howl that the tables were shaking…
But he refused to get up. Several people were needed to carry him to the car. 47 dogs and 22 cats were spayed and neutered on 02/25.
On the third day 2 Chihuahuas had cardiac problems on the table. Thanks to the immediate treatment with Atropin and Epiphedrin they could be stabilized…
…and the surgeries could be completed successfully.
…They recovered without further problems.
2 large dogs became scared when waking and screamed their headsf. They calmed down when completely awake – no medication was needed here. Generally Chihuahuas are the ones with a tendency to scream when waking up from anesthesia; a few drops of Novalgin on the tongue calm them quickly.
At lunchtime the current broke down and the generator that was available didn’t work either. It became very dark, hot and humid inside the building. An hour later electricity went back on.
In the afternoon Mario, a retired German vet from Hamburg and his wife Andrea visited. Mario and Andrea spend the winters in the Dominican Republic. They had met Marina Jellinek while taking dogs for a walk and had been invited by her to come and see how spay & neuter clinics are done in the Dominican Republic. She introduced them to Susanne Vogler, Judy Liggio and Dee Morisson and told them also about The German Association Aid and Support for the Creole Dogs.
One of the last patients this day was a Chow-Chow bitch.
She had strangely changed tissue at her ovaries.
The vets weren’t quite sure what it was but they took all out and sent it in for examination.
On 02/26, the last day of the operative, 52 dogs and 13 cats were spayed and neutered.
On the 27th Dr. Vogler had a day off and drove to Samaná…
…„to catch a view of the Atlantic “. On the 28th she visited a friend in the mountains of Jamao and an elementary school for which she had brought donations. Her return flight was scheduled a day late because the plane had technical problems.
A big, big Thank you to Dr. Susanne Vogler for her great commitment and we hope to be able to participate again in 2018 as usual!
The operative scheduled for August in the southwest of the Dominican Republic has to be postponed to the beginning of 2018 because the participants couldn’t agree on a date that suit them all. We are already collecting donations for the clinics in 2018 because apart from the operative of Anja Heß and her team there are campaigns planned with Dr. Vogler, Claudia Bretthauer, Julia Neumann, Monika Eickhoff and team. We depend on the help of the friends of the Creole dogs to be able to spay and neuter in 2018 as usual!
The Grenada SPCA exists since1936 and is one of the oldest animal welfare organizations in the Caribbean. 2008 we became aware of the GSPCA for the first time during the Caribbean Animal Welfare Conference in Santo Domingo. At their presentation the former president Peggy said: „We have almost always a vet on the island, except for a few weeks in the year. Most of them come from England, USA and Canada. We have an apartment on the first floor of our clinic in St. George and a beach house on Carriacou where we turned one room into a surgery. In the north of Grenada we have 2 stations where we can spay and neuter…
…the porch of a private house…
…and a plantation.
We transport all the equipment in our surgery van, a mobile clinic that was donated by WSPCA. With the van we also visit isolated villages and operate all day long as long as we have access to current and water. 15 – 20 animals can be done in a day. We spay and neuter about 1200 animals per year.“ Peggy sent us photos to illustrate our report about the CAWC and she gave our still very young association valuable advice on how to conduct a field clinic. At that time Grenada was leading in spay and neuter in all of the Caribbean.
January 2016 the current president Sharon Yawching wrote us: „What we need the most are vets for the field who will go out to the isolated areas…“ When Claudia Bretthauer asked us if we were interested to work with her we knew we had found the right vet for Grenada!
Claudia Bretthauer loves the marathon…
…as a very successful long distance rider…
… and as surgeon, here during an operative in Spain November 2015…
…where she spayed and neutered about 180 cats and 150 dogs in 4 days with only one other surgeon. Later she said that the fantastic logistical work of the helper team had been the reason for this result…
The operative took place at the Crayfish Bay Organic Cocoa Estate in the north of Grenada.
Here Kim and Lylette Russell cultivate organic cocoa based on a fair share ethos and produce finest biological chocolate.
The 200 year old estate was completely run down when Kim and Lylette took over.
It took a lot of hard work…
…to restore Crayfish Bay Organic Cocoa Estate to its former beauty.
The employees earn 90% of the value of the wet cocoa they pick. They also have the option of planting as much yearly crops on the land as they wish, whether for selling or for personal use, as long as the crops are organically grown an don’t interfere with the cocoa plants.
This wonderful plant becomes…
…after the harvest…
… and many different production stages…
…the most delicious organic chocolate!
The „Little House“ of Crayfish Bay…
…normally accommodation for backpackers who want to explore the untouched north of the island…
…served Claudia Bretthauer and her team as home for 2 weeks and surgery at the same time.
The corner post supporting the roof on The Little House’s veranda was to become the spay board for cats during the operative.
A very annoying incident occurred during the preparations for the clinic: When we sent our equipment to Claudia Bretthauer by post, our clippers were stolen. Although the parcel was insured, only a fifth of the value of the used machines was re-funded.
Our faithful donors who had already enabled us to buy medical supplies for 200 spays helped once more so that we could buy new machines.
But as soon as Claudia Bretthauer had set her foot on Grenada, the most successful operative began that we ever had! Within a good week she spayed and neutered 252 animals. In-between this gifted surgeon still found the time to write a report in form of a diary which we are happy to publish here:
January 26th 2017 our small group started our journey to Grenada. We were four: Sonja, my former assistant, the veterinary technician Dominik, my husband Carsten and myself. We arrived at 4 pm Eastern Caribbean time and were picked uo by Luke, the boyfriend of veterinary Hayley who will help us in the next days. We drove for about an hour in the dark on a very curvy road without crash barrier up and down the hills before reaching our destination: The cocoa farm of Kim and Lylette Russell in St. Mark in the north of Grenada. They have offered their guesthouse to the operative for the coming 2 weeks. We were welcomed enthusiastically with a delicious fish soup.
Afterwards we worked til late in the night to set up our surgery for the following day.
Everything is ready!
01/27/17 At 11:00 the first dogs arrived.
Altogether we had I 12 bitches, 14 males…
…and 20 abortions on this first day.
Hayley spayed 2 bitches – she is a very good surgeon! The team from left to right: Jolanda from St. Georges, Dominik, Sonja, myself, Ronaldo from St. Georges, Luke and Hayley.
Every dog got a spot-on…
…a de-wormer and a rabies vaccination. All animals had fleas.
An elderly lady had brought her male dog apparently just for a vaccination. I wasn’t informed about this until I had already removed one testicle. Unfortunately the lady couldn’t be talked into letting me remove the second one…I ordered 30 animals for tomorrow.
01/28/17 Today we started earlier because it is Saturday and people have more time. At times up to 15 people stood around us and watched us work. A lot of young people brought their dogs.
Signs that were fastened wherever possible…
…and flyers on the house walls in the neighbouring villages showed them the way.
Some dogs had very interesting make-shift collars made from chains, wires and cables. 2 bitches were brought by a small boy. Apparently he wanted them only to get de-wormed and vaccinated because they were already spayed but he didn’t tell anybody. And scars at dogs‘ bellies are not always the result of a previous surgery… One male had a hernia on both sides; almost all of the small intestine was in there.
About 99% of all dogs that we spayed and neutered so far were bleeders because of Ehrlichioses transmitted by ticks. They all got Doxycycline. In the afternoon Hayley came. She spayed 3 bitches and neutered 5 males.
Our new clippers, here in the front, work well. Today we operated
bitches, 23 males and one cat, forty animals. We fell asleep very tired…
01/29/17 After a substantial breakfast with fried eggs, beans, bacon, tomatoes and freshly made grape fruit juice our host Kim took us to a lonely beach in a little bay.
Dressed up as tourists…
It was wonderful to swim in the warm Caribbean sea and climb up on the rocks to watch small crabs. Kim had some appointments and couldn’t stay with us. After 2 hours we started to walk back home on little trails that led through small villages and tropical rainforest along the steep coast and back down to the sea where fishing boats were lying. Everybody we met was very friendly. On the beach we saw a man who apparently tried to drown his small dog. We rushed to the dog’s rescue but when we talked to the man he explained that he was just trying to rid the dog of its fleas by ducking it repeatedly under water. We told him about our operative and he promised to drop by in the next days to get spot-ons for his dog. Back home we nursed our sunburn and went to bed early.
01/30/17 The day began as always with a wonderful breakfast; we had fried eggs and bacon. Around 10:30 the first dogs came, among them a male we had neutered 2 days ago. He had licked his wound open. Unfortunately he was so aggressive that we had to anaesthetize him to look at the wound. It wasn’t as bad as it had looked at first. I sewed him up again with an additional thread and let him sleep off the anaesthesia. In the afternoon the dog with the hernia was brought again. The wound was swollen but he had no fever. He got antibiotics and pain killers and we asked the owners to return in 2 days. It makes me happy to see that the people are concerned about their freshly operated animals.
We spayed 18 bitches and neutered 10 males and a tom cat ( Dominik did the tom cat). One bitch had a mammary tumor that I removed. Hayley didn’t have time today. 3 dogs went on the drip because they were anemic from Ehrlichioses and had completely white mucous membranes. Afterwards all of them looked a lot better.
Removing ticks, the carriers of Ehrlichioses…
…and drowning them in a bowl of water.
Afterwards the anemic patient receives an infusion…
We are quite happy with what we have achieved in the first 3 days: 99 animals are spayed and neutered. That is almost half of what we had wanted to do.
01/31/17 After a big breakfast with omelets we had to wait for our dog catchers. They were searching for their credit card half the morning so they could refuel the car.
Then, when the first dogs arrived, it happened! A bitch escaped from a cage that didn’t close properly and disappeared between bushes. Luckily there was a fence and the gate was guarded by Kim’s 2 dogs. Six of us went to search for the dog and caught her again with the help of a sling. Today we had some very young and quite big bitches. One of them had such bad tissue because of Ehrlichioses that one ovary tore off completely. I managed to stop the bleeding but hat to terminate the surgery. The bitch can probably still go into heat but won’t get pregnant anymore. We informed the owners. We spayed 9 bitches and 2 cats today and neutered 20 males. Dominik did 6 of the males.
02/02/17 Today the delivery of the dogs went very slowly because Luke and Ronaldo drove to very remote areas.
Therefore we had to operate the last dogs and cats when it was already dark underneath a lamp…
…or with the help of a flashlight which attracted a lot of mosquitos that buzzed around my ears. During the day we were visited by an American travel group that took photo of us. We spayed 12 bitches and 2 cats, one of them pregnant with 3 kittens, and neutered 16 males and 1 tom cat Today a few bitches had bloated bellies full of water. One of them was so bad and also so skinny that we were wondering if we shouldn’t euthanize her.
02/02/17 After breakfast I accompanied our dog catchers on their tour to the villages. They do an amazing job! We went to very isolated villages and talked to the people.
All owners had to fill in a form declaring that they were aware of the risks of a surgery and agreed to all necessary medical treatments before we took their dogs with us. Only few people own cars. Ronaldo and Luke transport the dogs free of charge to the surgery and back. Shortly afterwards the man came whom we had met a few days ago when he had tried to drown his dog’s fleas. He had remembered our offer and was very grateful for the spot-ons we gave him.
In the afternoon a man came with 2 sheep. They were treated for mites. One dog was brought by his owner.
Bur nobody came to pick up the dog again so it slept in Sonja’s bed that night. We spayed 15 bitches and a cat today and neutered 16 males. A little while ago we were informed that the bitch that had been in such a bad shape yesterday had died last night. May she rest in peace! I asked Haley for the reason of the water in the dogs’ bellies and she said that most likely a massive infestation with worms was the cause. Important for the next operative: Injectable de-wormer!
02/03/17 Today we started early with a lot of very young dogs. Almost all of them had some water in their bellies but all surgeries were done without any complications.
A whole family, mother, son and baby son – all spayed and neutered!
All puppies get fixed, no matter how young they are.
This is a photo of a puppy’s uterus…
…and here it is again next to the suture: It’s hardly thicker than the thread…
I am happy to get so many animals! And also such young ones that not everybody can operate. As long as it is at all possible I spay and neuter every animal that is brought to me. We had no serious issues so far. A reason for that is of course also that Dominik is such a fantastic vet tech.
Our youngest patient is about 6 weeks old.
Also he was successfully neutered.
The patient is sleeping off the anaesthesia.
A little while ago some people asked if we will return and a woman who lives in quite a distance from here, about 45 minutes by car, was brought by her daughter to get her male neutered. This is a start! We did 12 bitches, 21 males and 1 tom cat today. One bitch had a dead litter in her belly. The amniotic fluid was already dark and hard. Lucky for her that we could spay her. Otherwise she would have died a slow cruel death. We just finished. The dog that nobody picked up yesterday was collected by its owner this afternoon. Tonight is “Fish Friday”. Everybody is out on the streets celebrating. We drive to Grenada’s largest fishing village to have dinner – fish of course! Fantastic!
02/04/17 After getting up we learnt that our dog catchers won’t come today. Leisurely we had breakfast and tidied up a bit afterwards. Then Kim suggested to go and get a few dogs so that we could spay and neuter at least 4 bitches and 3 males. 4 people from the neighbourhood brought their dogs to get them de-wormed but we weren’t allowed to operate them.
02/05/17 Today was Sunday and we spent the day with Hayley, Luke and Ronaldo.
We bathed in lagoons underneath water falls…
…climbed a high mountain from where we could look down onto the Caribbean sea and several small islands…
…and swam in the sea. It was absolutely perfect!
Unfortunately Dominik twisted his ankle on the way back and will be somewhat restricted for the rest of the operative.
02/06/17 Our last day… The morning began as always with an excellent breakfast. Then we set up our surgery for the last time. The dogs were brought in very slowly today. Tomorrow is Independence Day and everybody is celebrating already. Sometimes we have to wait 2 hours till the next patient arrives.
A male that I neutered a week ago…
…was brought with a swollen scrotum.
I had to remove the scrotum.
One male had 2 tumors at his eye lids that stuck out over the eyes and bled strongly. I could remove them. The surgery went very well. One bitch had an othematoma. It was already so old that she will keep scars from it. The little male with the hernia returned for the last control – he was looking great!
3 cows were vaccinated against rabies after they had been caught from a large pasture. Tomorrow we will de-worm 30 goats…
252 animals were spayed and neutered altogether:
4 tom cats
Other surgeries and treatments we did: 1 hernia, 1 umbilical hernia, 1 othematoma, 1 eyelid tumor, 2 mammary tumors, 80 animals were vaccinated against rabies, among them 6 cows, 2 sheep were treated against mites, 1 dog died, 1 scrotum removal due to swelling a week after surgery, 2 anaesthesia issues, both survived.
A big Thank you to Isabel Gorski-Grobe who did a terrific job from a far distance and organized a big operative without ever having been here! A big Thank you also to our dog catchers Luke and Ronaldo who had a strenuous and sometimes dangerous task to do; to Haley who helped us and provided vaccine and doxycycline and to our wonderful hosts Kim and Lylette Russell for their great hospitality and the delicious food they always prepared for us!
And we can only thank Claudia Bretthauer and her team for this fantastic operative and hope that we can repeat this next year!