Wednesday, November 30, 2016

WSD 2016 The Clinic Days

Our World Spay Day 2016 Week Campaña in Havana wrapped up Friday February 26. 
In five days we sterilizations 248 dogs and cats.
On Saturday our mass deparasitization event treated 348. 
Rabies vaccine was administered to all that needed the shot.
 Each of our campañas opens with introductions and orientations.
 Clinic protocols are also outlined.
 Casa Calderone's amphitheatre was the ideal location for our morning meetings.
Veterinary Students are the future for Cuba's animals. 
It is an honour for us to be a small part of crafting that future.
 Dr.Raymond Donavan, from Trinidad & Tobago, spends some time greeting at registration.

Dr.(Russo)Viacheslav Eduardovich Zenkov and Spanky Project's Director of Veterinary Medicine Dr.Michael Belovich guide students through the "sedation and induction" department.
It is always great to have these exchanges of mutual support
Dr.Russo and his team do great work in the province of Matanzas.
We always welcome them to our campañas in Havana.
Our surgical suite had four tables.

For the most part a Cuban Vet and one of our International Team 
members would work together.
Here Dr.Ramond shares some of his "fancy knots" with Dra.Rocio.
Humane traps ready to be deployed.

 Since 2006 the Spanky Project has worked under the umbrella of the Consejo Cientifico Veterinario de Cuba (CCVC). The veterinary council is a Cuban NGO created in 1908.  President of the CCVC, Dra.Beatriz Amaro came by for a visit.

Dra.Nana (in blue) is the Queen of Recovery.
The students love this stop on their rotation.
Despite several efforts to channel her to another department she refuses to leave her "realm".

Dr.Fernado takes some time out to administer some holistic therapy Dra.Nora.

Nora is the Institute of Veterinary Medicine's Director for the City of Havana.
We are grateful to the IMV for the trust they place in us and the support they give us in our work.

In addition to the sterilizations we do hold consultations
 on any concerns caregivers have with their pets
As we begin the day with a group meeting so do we end the day.
The head of each department gives a summary of their day.
The good ... the bad ... the ugly.
We want to hear it all and improve day by day. 

Dr.Leyssan and, final year Veterinary Student , Ernesto 
bottle feed some kittens at the end of the day.

All the hard work all the time and all the expense that goes into making these campañas a reality has a big payoff for me in the simplest of ways.

One day I was out of the clinic for a couple of hour to attend a meeting.
Upon my return I was to that two ladies wanted to meet me.
Their pets had been released earlier from surgery but they stuck around because the wanted to meet "el Jefe" (the boss).
Through a translator they expressed their gratitude and thanks for 
the opportunity and great work are doing.

I also had a gentleman that came up to me with a gift.

He thanked me and gave me a package of cigarettes.

"Gracias señor but I do not smoke"

He paused and said, "take them.... maybe you will start again".

We had a good laugh!!!!

The final event of our officlal program was a mass deparasitization and rabies clinic.
This was held in the streets of Habana Vieja.
Thank you to the Cuban structure known as Zoonosis. 
They provided the rabies vaccine for the whole week.

The last order of business for WSD 2016 Week was the wrap party.
We gathered at the Hotel Conde de Villanueva in the heart of Habana Vieja.

 Looking down on our group I was very moved.
Moved by, how out of the love for a little dog the dream of  project has become a reality.
Thankful for those that have joined us on our path.
The Spanky Project has come a long way since it's beginnings in 2003.

Gracias a todos!

I will leave you with these few minutes from our WSD2016 wrap party.

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Twas the night before ....

... the opening day of our campaña.
Our World Spay Day 2016 campaña was very much a community effort.
That is, in addition eleven official Cuban structures collaborated with us.

We even had a meeting, in the street, with the local CDR.
(Committees for the Defense of the Revolution)
Locals like Willito and Alejandro (green) were always on hand to help us out.

As the sun sets and the moon rises ... Habana Vieja quiets down.
The day tripping visitors are gone and the cats come out.
We had a team trapping in Plaza de Armas.
Another team was up the street ...
.. and down in the sewer system.
Well, Meredith was down below.
It was a good session with nearly 20 cats trapped.
The cats spent the night in a secure location.
They next morning they were transported to our clinic by horse and carriage.
Members of El Carriage - Cooperativa de Cocheros offered their services to our TNR.
These are the Coach Horse Carriage drivers that are for hire in Habana Vieja
The Spanky Project has been helping Cubans help their animals since 2003.
With every step we take we make new friends that join us on the journey.
We are grateful for each and every one of them.
Reunion 2008 

"If you want to go fast, go alone. 
If you want to go far, go together."