Some of our guests prior to 2019 may remember our Gambia dog neutering program from when we were working closely with Dr Michael Meyer of Touray & Meyer’s veterinary practice. The idea was that our guests would donate a small sum of money and we would organise some days each month where we would identify animals that would benefit from being spayed.
Kunta, a member of our team who really loves animals would speak with local dog owners and ask if they would like to prevent their animals from having more offspring. Unfortunately, this program ended when Micha left The Gambia to return to his home in Germany.
Micha and his team
Dog neutering in The Gambia
There are currently some organisations which do this kind of work. Namely Gambiacats ( Yes they do dogs ) and The Animal Care Association. Both are charities and neither has an up-to-date and functioning website that I could find. The organisation that is probably doing most for dogs in terms of care and neutering is The Gambia Horse & Donkey Trust.
They are based at Makasutu, which is approximately an hour’s drive from Gunjur, so Gunjur’s dog population has been rising steadily since the days when Micha and his team were doing their work with us. This has meant that in recent times that there have been packs of dogs in and around the Gunjur area. Most noticeably at the beach. The dogs are not generally aggressive, in fact, mostly they are very friendly but their overall condition is bad due to not being cared for as an owned dog would be.
Footsteps have teamed up with Yahya Fatty, a local vet who operates a mobile service. Yahya has been taking care of our dogs for some years now and his work is of a very high standard. We approached him during one of his visits this year and asked if he would be willing to dedicate one day a month for the neutering of local dogs in Gunjur. To our delight, he agreed and we are now planning to build a small room with a suitable table and water/electricity so he can perform his surgeries right here at Footsteps.
If you have a sick or injured animal in The Gambia you can contact Yahya on +220 7360858
Mobile veterinary surgery
So how can you help?
You can help by making a donation either when you place your booking, ( you will find the option to donate in the extras section ) or while you are at the lodge. The cost of neutering a dog with Yahya is less than half than the normal cost if you were to take a dog for neutering.
The charge is approx £35 and includes a general check up and its rabies shot. You can choose to neuter one dog or several or make a smaller donation, in any event we will neuter as many dogs each month as we have the funds which to do.
Benefits of neutering
The benefits to the dog are many and include for females lower mammory cancer rates and for males lower testicular and prostate diseases. Another benefit which is often overlooked is because there are less pregnancies and so less dogs in general, we see less packs and because the overall condition of the remaining dogs is higher it means the local community are at less risk of infections from dogs which are uncared for.
If you would like to find out more about this program in advance of your visit please don’t hesitate to contact me