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So It Begins…

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So It Begins…

For the first day of vaccinations, our team (Go Gorillas!) was assigned to held a static clinic at a church on the outskirts of Kabale.

We were able to vaccinate just over 100 dogs. The next day, we set up at another church (Photo 1) in the mountain community surrounding Kabale. Although the morning was slow, that gave us the opportunity for a lesson in Rukiga ("Roo-chee-gah"), the local language.

Dogs are brought on leashes made of wire, chain, woven grass or in sacks. They aren’t always used to being handled. After lunch we scaled the beautiful hillsides that surround Kabale to vaccinate dogs in the rural areas. Some residents are unable to bring their dogs to the static clinic for various reasons, so we also try to bring the clinic to them by going door-to-door. The local children are always eager to help point out which homes have dogs! Going door-to-door allows us a better glimpse into the lives of the dogs and people we are trying to protect.

We paint a temporary line on each dog we have seen to show that the dog has been vaccinated. Because our team stays in each area for a day or two, there may be some overlap in coverage. Marking the dogs helps us make sure a dog isn’t vaccinated twice. It also serves as a conversation starter among the locals when they notice the painted dogs.

We started out with a portable soft cooler full of vaccines and returned with tired legs and happy hearts.

—Peggy Burris, DVM, & Dawn McCluskey, DVM

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