Sterilizations, Kennels And Township Life
It is a much different reality, an easy life versus the hard life. A life full of comforts and luxury versus a life that lacks the basic and fundamental things everyone requires. Every township I have driven past, visited or worked in is a reminder of so many things to me. When human animals barely have their basic needs met when it comes to shelter, safety, water and food what does a life look like for a non human animal in an environment that lacks?
It is very easy to judge and say things about others and yet very few people take the time and make the effort to assist and help where help is required. I've said it before. There is a mind set with some people whereby they live thinking that somebody else will take care of the problem. “can someone please do something about this?” What if you are that someone? What if you are the person with enough inspiration, motivation, great innovative ideas and perseverance to tackle exactly the issue at hand whatever that may be but instead you choose not to do it it because you are thinking and asking “can someone please do something about this?”
We all have a responsibility in some way shape or form for our community and the environment we live in and when it comes to non human animals we have a duty to make sure that those we share the planet with know and experience love and compassion. It should be a way to live by and a daily act of kindness
When I started my trip I was told that the animal hospitals or animal clinics would maybe be too boring for me because most don't work with wildlife and yet what I have seen and learned by spending time in these clinics is hardcore. And what I have seen and experienced when it comes to animal welfare and welfare rescue organizations is even more hardcore. They may not be wildlife. They may not be from some exotic endangered specie. They are however the ones who walk side by side with us when we allow and welcome them to do so. They sleep on our beds, jump on our couches, run and play with us and often times protect us when there is danger. They are our domestic non-human animal friends. And even when we are mean to them, and they fear us, they still follow us as if we are their best friends because to them they are ours.
In the end it is a choice to care for those or help care for non-human individuals when their caregivers are not able to do so. The animals in poorer communities require our help.
Meeting The Team
I met with the Founders of iZinja who has a passion to improve the lives of disadvantaged animals in poorer communities. iZinja was founded in March 2014 by Janette and Brian Wood.
Their Aim is to instill in the community a sense of responsibility and pride for their animals. Their main focus is sterilization, regular dipping & deworming, assistance and advice on general health care & shelter. By working hand in hand with the community they believe that the lives of the animals and their owners will be uplifted.
We started our day with delivering kennels. For a team of two its no small task and so help is always appreciated and I encourage people who wish to volunteer to reach out and assist. There is much to do and a day is just not long enough. As anticipated a day can go from having a planned schedule to unexpected people reaching out for help for their animals. Moment to moment, be it deworming, delivering kennels to houses, picking up or dropping off dogs or cats from the animal clinic to following up on post op and taking out stitches. iZinja is on the go doing what they promised, keeping their word and helping humans with their non human friends.
I must say from all the places I've been to my visit with them to a particular house had me in tears. There is nothing worse than having to say goodbye to an animal companion and witnessing the last moments between a human and non-human friend is not easy nor was it easy for the founders of iZinja who know each family and have worked with them and their animals for the past 7 years. We have all been there and it really is like losing a family member and a friend.
STERILISATION : They facilitate the sterilization of dogs and cats at no cost to the pet owner.
EDUCATION: They strive to educate the pet owners on how best to care for their pet/s.
HEALTH & WELLBEING: They give basic medical care to wounded or sick dogs and help with mange treatment to affected dogs and supply flea & tick dip.
SHELTER: They advise/give assistance to the owners on providing adequate shelter for their animals.
All of this is possible due to donations. They rely on cash donations from the public to fund the sterilizations.
Animal Anti-Cruelty League
The AACL helps iZinja with some of their cases where they can.
The AACL provides assistance to indigent communities, including squater camps residing in the northern areas of Nelson Mandela Bay. The AACL is the second largest Animal Welfare organization in South Africa. Established in 1956.
If you would like to report a case of cruelty to an animal, or would like an AACL inspector to visit you, please contact your nearest AACL Branch
The League also runs special projects. Their mobile clinics regularly visit disadvantaged areas and treat animals in need at a minimal fee. Awareness campaigns, which address issues such as the importance of sterilization, are ongoing and it is mandatory that every pet is sterilized by the AACL, before being re-homed. Many schools visit their headquarters and their inspectors and education officers visit schools regularly, to educate learners on the importance of animal welfare issues and pet care responsibilities.