By Rashmi Ranjan,
On behalf of the APOWA team
APOWA has been providing relief to animals in cyclone- and flood-affected villages of Odisha, India. Phailin left a trail of destruction. According to the report of the Animal Resource Development Department, Government of Odisha, over seven million animals were adversely affected.
The cyclone, attaining a windspeed of 220 kilometers per hour (136 miles per hour) killed 1,500 large animals, 3,000 small animals and 600,000 birds.
Recent heavy rains, due to another low pressure system that formed over the Bay of Bengal on the Odisha coast, have worsened the suffering of Phailin victims. A continuous downpour has made life precarious and painful in the affected areas.
Since the cyclone struck, APOWA’s disaster response team has been conducting rescue and relief work on the basis of a war footing. We’ve been helped by five animal caretakers who feed neighborhood dogs and an honorary animal welfare officer, certified by the Animal Welfare Board of India.
Our Kindness vehicle has been traveling from village to village in the affected areas, offering much-needed assistance and providing vital resources to the animals in distress. Our team of one veterinarian, three paravets (vet techs), and 14 volunteers has been on the go tirelessly, treating animals and providing emergency feeding.
October 19, 2013
Our team spent a whole day at Singhagaon village, where a great many animals – neighborhood dogs, stray bulls, cats, and buffaloes were suffering from injury, hunger, dehydration, fever, and coughs. Some kind volunteers from the community joined our team and pitched in, helping to feed the dogs, cats, and cows. Our team provided treatment and feeding to 68 animals in the village.
October 20, 2013
It’s been a full week since we started providing relief to the surviving animals of the cyclone and flooding. Today, we rushed to Bishnupur village, where we treated and gave food to 54 animals.
October 21, 2013
Today our team treated and fed 71 animals at Berhampur village of Pattamundai block.
October 22, 2013
A team from Humane Society International (HSI) Asia headed by Soham Mukherjee and two veterinarians joined our team at Kantiagarh and Laxmipur village of Ganjam District. There 133 animals were treated and emergency feeding provided.
October 23, 2013
We continue our lifesaving work for animals and our rescue and relief efforts. Our team moved to Kusumi village of Aul block, which had been cut off, entirely surrounded by rivers and severely affected by both the cyclone and the floods. There 83 animals were treated and 52 animals were given food.
Our priority in this disaster is to aid homeless, stray animals who need emergency vet care and food. At the same time, we are continuing our regular work helping other animals.
Without proper electricity and no drinking water, food procurement is a big problem faced by our team. Despite the difficulty, we’re doing everything possible to get food and treatment to the animals. Because of our love for the animals, we will continue to stay here, working on their behalf until the situation improves.
We are grateful to all of our supporters, well-wishers, and to the district administration for their timely cooperation in our work for the animals in the aftermath of cyclone Phailin.
To visit the website of APOWA, click here.
For an easy way to donate, via Help Animals India, click here.
Photos: Courtesy of APOWA