Saturday, March 31, 2012

They Brought Their Horses, Dogs and a Cat.

Nice wheels, Julio !

This fine Sunday morning we loaded up for the drive to the municipality of
San Miguel del Padron.

Upon arrival at Consultorio Veterinario C#2 they were waiting for us.

Dra.Danis home based clinic, as of this posting, is the only Veterinary clinic in a municipality of 150,000+.

photo:Susana Hurlich

On this day we were prepared to spay/neuter some dogs and cats
deparasitize dogs and horses.

Until just recently, Danis worked on her own with the able assistance of her husband Tony.
Now, Danis has been assigned a Veterinary Technician.
Eduardo Castellanos Garcia (pictured below) is a specialist in horse care.
With over 350 horses in the municipality he will certain help improve equine health.
The Spanky Project assisted this day by offering a deworming session for local horses.

photo:Susana Hurlich


I am extremely grateful for the consistent support we receive in Cuba.
Our partners are wonderful.
Nilda, on the left, is the former interim Municipal Director of the IMV.
Dr.Sergio Chan, in the middle, is the Bayer rep in Cuba.
That's Danis on the right.

A big thank you to Dr.Chan and Bayer.
They provided the Drontal Plus for this campaña.

Krystal Wallace is a Veterinary Technician at Yonge Street Animal Hospital in Toronto.
Having a "tech" with us made a world of difference.

photo:Susana Hurlich
The Spanky Project is very fortunate to have Dr.Michele Travers as part of our team.
This is Michele's second trip to Cuba with the Spanky Project.

Having her with us is like having two Vets ... small animal practitioner and an equine specialist.
Pictured below is Alicia Garcia Soto, IMV (Institute of VeterinaryMedicine) Director for San Miguel del Padron. She has the clipboard at the ready to record each horses info.

After being released from recovery these little guys had a ride home.

Rounding out our Canadian crew was Dr.Michael Belovich.
Dr.B is the Practice Owner & Lead Veterinarian of
Yonge Street Animal Hospital in Toronto.
Dr.B has worked closely with his suppliers to acquire donated supplies for delivery to Cuba.
Here he presents Danis with Metacam and Cefa-Drops.
Thanks go to
Boehringer Ingelheim (Canada) Ltd./Ltée

Last but not least ...
Cuban Veterinarian Dr.Edgar Llorente has become a regular on our San Miguel campañas.

On this morning we ...
20 horses + 75 dogs
8 dogs +1 cat

Monday, March 19, 2012

Dog Day Afternoon

Here we go again!

As per normal, my trip to Cuba began with a ride on Coach Canada.
This time I had the joy of being on a MegaBus.

Cubana Airlines has once again change it's leasing partner.
The recent relationship with Canada's Flair Airlines, it's Boeing 737s and Canadian crews seems to be history.

Now the supplier is Avion Express of Vilnius, Lithuania. They fly AirBus A320s that have had their interiors refurbished at Mirabel Aero Services in Montreal, Canada.
It's good to see the return of the Cuban crews.

All bags coming off the aircraft in Cuba are xrayed or otherwise screened before they appear on the baggage carousel.
Should something catch the eye of a screener your baggage tag will be marked.
Note one of our tags below.

What was in this bag you ask?
Farrier tools.
We jokingly called them our "equine manicure kit"!

A special thank you to Dr.Angel Mario, the on duty airport Veterinarian.
He expedited our entry paperwork and guided us through Aduana (Customs).

It was a long day. My head finally hit my pillow at about 5:00am.
With little sleep I don't understand how Krystal could be all smiles in the morning.
Perhaps it was nerves. Susana and Gladys were preparing to send her to the CADECA.
CADECA = Casa de Cambio = Currency Exchange

Knowing that our travel day would be arduous ... a light schedule was planned for "Day 1"

At noon we arrived at ...

This was the site of the Campeonato Panamericano

We had the pleasure of meeting with
Miguel Calvo Cartaya, FCC President.
Federación Cinologica de Cuba (FCC or the Cuban Dog Breeders Federation)

Hey guys look ... the Rotties have tails

It was an exceptionally fun day.
And a great way to ease into the week.

Many breeds were represented.

photo by:Suana Hurlich
After a fine dinner at Union Francesca de Cuba and a brief encounter with John Lennon...
... it was back to the hotel.

We ended the day in my room packing for the next day's activity.

This week will be filled with sterilization clinics and deparasitization events for dogs and horses.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Wishlist TNR

In May we will initiate a Trap Neuter Return (TNR) program for feral cats in Havana.
This will be in collaboration with the Emma Clifford and the great volunteers of Animal Balance.

Given the great success in reducing stray dog populations, cats are making a very public appearance.
We have been successfully prepositioned twenty cat traps for the May launch.

Thanks go to Animal Balance for coordinating the donation of the traps.

Through the generosity of Alley Cat Allies (they funded the purchase) and Tomahawk Live Traps
they were shipped from Wisconsin, USA to Ontario, Canada

Once they arrived it was time to figure out how to get them to Cuba. A public call went out on Cuban travel forums and generous individuals actually purchased traps and delivered them Havana.

That still left the fact I had twenty traps and accessories.
Thanks to Grace, Ellen and Ingrid of APAC Varadero,
Darci at CANDI International and Air Transat the traps flew free of charge to Varadero.

The traps are now in Cardenas with Ingrid. Soon they will make their way to Havana

We could use further assistance with the purchase and delivery of more traps to Havana.
These would not only be for our May campaña but will be used in other parts of Cuba.
Ideally in resort areas and Cat Café programs.

From Tomahawk Live Traps of Wisconsin USA
Cat transfer cage
Cat trap
Cat trap
Cat trap dividers

In Manitoba, Canada
Cat transfer cage
Cat trap

In the Vancouver area
Integrated Pest Supplies
Ask for the Tomahawk 606 Cat Trap

Also in preparation for future sterilization campañas we have wormers and other items on our Wishlist.

For those that live in Australia, or anyone happy to do mail order,
Ilium Pyraquantal is well priced broad spectrum wormer.

Troy Wormex also appears to be an excellent value.

Pet Tents such as this one and the ones below.
They are great for our recovery rooms especially when caring for cats.

... or you can always