Posts by: Katie

Help Working Horses! Volunteer on our Equine Welfare Project

In Nicaragua, especially in low income households, horses are heavily relied upon for transportation, whether it be transporting people or raw materials. As a result, horses bear the brunt of much hard labor resulting in wounds, lacerations as well as poor health and malnutrition. To alleviate the hardships they face, World Vets has been providing free veterinary services for the working horse population in Nicaragua for many years.

Our equine welfare project is based in Granada and targets both carriage and cart horses as well as those owned by low income households who cannot afford veterinary care for their horses. Since its inception, we have expanded our reach and now operate mobile clinics in both urban and rural areas as well as other localities within the department of Granada.

The veterinary services that we facilitate at no cost include hoof and dental work, vaccinations, castrations, de-worming and wound treatments. Our main focus has been to improve the comfort and quality of life of working horses, and so we often distribute donated halters, leads and padding to horse owners as well.

If you have been looking for a way to help horses abroad, we have volunteer opportunities available as part of our equine welfare project in Nicaragua. Our next set of mobile outreach clinics are scheduled in December and volunteer positions are still available! Learn more

 

NEW! Introducing the IVM “Field Project”

The International Veterinary Medicine (IVM) Program is World Vets student program that is run out of our of Latin America Veterinary Training Center located in Nicaragua. The IVM Program provides English speaking students with a unique training and cultural experience by providing them an opportunity to gain practical veterinary experience within an international context.

In 2018 we will be adapting the IVM Program to a field project setting. In this way students will receive the same hands on veterinary experience, with guidance and supervision from licensed veterinarians and technicians. However, the location and work conditions will vary. Instead of operating out of a teaching facility, students will work in a non-clinic environment and in turn be exposed to practicing veterinary medicine in a field-clinic setting.

Our upcoming IVM “Field Project” will take place in Utila, Honduras from May 12 – 19, 2018. Project information as well as student and instructor registration will open Fall 2017.


What is the difference between the IVM Program and an IVM “field project”?

Location & Work Conditions

The IVM Program takes place at World Vets Latin America Veterinary Training Center (LATC) located in Granada, Nicaragua. The LATC is a teaching facility equipped with up to date medical, surgical, anesthetic and monitoring equipment.

The IVM “field project” that has been scheduled in 2018 will take place in Utila, Honduras. You will not work in a training facility that is equipped like the LATC. Instead you will work in field clinic conditions where we will operate a fully functional mobile surgery setup and travel with the veterinary supplies needed to provide routine veterinary care.

Week Itinerary & Anticipated Veterinary Work

The itinerary for the IVM field project is styled after our small animal veterinary field projects (see below for typical itinerary). Similar to the IVM Program, three full days will be dedicated to “clinic” and performing spay/neuter surgeries. However, there will not be a community outreach day where you will visit a rural community to provide veterinary services. Instead, you will also tend to health consultations and other potential surgical cases (alongside sterilization services) during the 3-day field clinic. With that being said, students and instructors can expect this to be a strictly small animal project, where horses and/or livestock will not be seen and/or treated.


What is the same between the IVM Program and the IVM “field project”?

A Focus on Teaching, Learning and Practicing

Similar to the IVM Program, the IVM field project will emphasize a high quality, low stress and hands on environment for students to learn and practice new skills. Veterinary students will work with DVM instructors to perform sterilizations and surgical monitoring, meanwhile pre-veterinary and veterinary technology students will work with LVT instructors in patient prep and induction.

Student & Instructor Positions

The positions available on the team roster will be for DVM and LVT instructors as well as veterinary students, pre-veterinary students and veterinary technology students. There will not be positions available for “assistants” and/or those who cannot be classified under the category of student and/or instructor.

Those interested in an instructor position should send a copy of their current license and CV/resume to info@worldvets.org to be considered. Licensed veterinarians and technicians must have at least one year of clinical experience to qualify for an instructor position, however, prior teaching experience is not a prerequisite. This is a low cost volunteer opportunity.

Low Volume

While a regular veterinary field project features high volume spay/neuter services, the IVM style field project will consist of low volume sterilization (up to 30 surgeries a day), which will be condusive to teaching, learning and practicing.


IVM Field Project Itinerary

Day 1: Arrival 

Today marks the official arrival day for the project. Participants will be asked to fly into Juan Manuel Gálvez International Airport*  located on the island of Roatan, Honduras (Airport Code: RTB). Participants will also be asked to arrive by a designated time as the team will then take a ferry ride from Roatan to the island of Utila.

*Volunteers may also fly directly to Utila, however please note that World Vets will not be providing airport transfers from this airport on arrival and departure days. If volunteers fly into/out of Utila, they will be responsible for their own airport transfers.

Day 2: Group Activity & Free Time

The team will take part in a group activity today that will be arranged by World Vets. This is typically a half day activity giving volunteers the opportunity to do their own exploring and/or sightseeing as well.

Day 3: Free Time | Clinic set up & Orientation

Today is set aside for free time and leisure. Volunteers will be responsible for making their own arrangements today for excursions, activities and/or sightseeing.

In the afternoon, World Vets field service veterinarian and a few volunteers will go to the clinic site to set up and prepare for veterinary services. Late afternoon/evening the team will meet up for a brief orientation to go over how things will run over the next three days.

Day 4, 5 & 6: Veterinary Clinic Days

Veterinary services will be provided in a field clinic setting over the next three days. The anticipated work hours are from 8:30 am until 5 pm. Students will work one on one with licensed veterinarians and technicians in patient prep and recovery and to perform sterilizations. They may also take turns rotating through health consultations (dependent on local demand).

Day 7: Free Time & Leisure

Today is set aside for free time and leisure. Volunteers will be responsible for making their own arrangements today for excursions, activities and/or sightseeing.

Day 8: Departure

Today marks the official departure day for the project. Participants will be instructed to schedule their departure flights for the afternoon as the team will need to take a morning ferry back to Roatan.

World Vets Helps 200 + Animals in Romania

World Vets recently had a veterinary team in Romania where we worked with local partners to provide free sterilization services for hundreds of dogs and cats in the area of Galati. We would like to thank Sava’s Safe Haven as well as our dedicated group of volunteers who made this all possible. 200 + animals will live healthier and longer lives because of your efforts!

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Organizing a volunteer trip for your group just got easier! 

If you are a student group, veterinary corporation and/or veterinary practice looking to volunteer abroad or provide an international volunteer opportunity for your colleagues, look no further. World Vets is able to provide a custom trip for groups in Nicaragua!

Aside from communicating your interests and objectives, there would be minimal requirements of you in organizing the experience for your group. World Vets will handle in-country logistics, pre-trip planning and all veterinary-related coordination. We will also facilitate all the veterinary supplies and medicines that would be needed.

Here are some examples of recent and/or upcoming custom trips;

World Vets recently welcomed a student group from Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) of Saskatchewan, Canada. We organized a two week program for them that combined clinic with activities out in the field. They received hands on experience in carrying out tasks related to patient prep and monitoring as well as performing sterilizations under the instruction and guidance of World Vets veterinary staff. They even tended to medical consultations during community outreach visits where they worked with both small animals and livestock, and made a visit to a wildlife sanctuary. What’s more, they helped to collect baseline data that will aid World Vets in monitoring and measuring animal health and wellbeing in the Laguna de Apoyo area.

In the coming months we will host a veterinary cooperate group for a one week small animal field project. As part of this trip they will have 3-4 days dedicated to providing veterinary services and 2-3 days for leisure and sightseeing. Veterinary services will be provided in a field setting and incorporate a rabies vaccination campaign in celebration of World Rabies Day (Sept 28). Read more about this trip

To inquire about a custom trip to Nicaragua for your group, please write to trips@worldvets.org

A few special notes:
  • Our custom trip opportunity is currently only offered for/in Nicaragua
  • Scheduling and dates are subject to availability
  • To be eligible for a custom trip, student groups must have a minimum number of 8 -10 people. Veterinary groups must be able to fill up to 15 positions, where at least 5 of which are DVM and 2 are LVT/RVT.

 

A Record Breaking Success: Cusco, Peru

World Vets has been working in the Cusco region of Peru for almost six years.  During this time have we partnered, and actively collaborate, with locally practicing veterinarians, a well respected animal welfare organization in addition to municipal authorities. Though even despite the duration of our involvement, and the efforts of local partners, spay/neuter continues to be in high demand and much needed.

Our recent campaign was a great testament of this as our veterinary team worked tirelessly with local partners to provide hundreds of free sterilizations, among other surgeries, for local animals in need. In just three days time, over 350 surgical procedures were performed! This is an unbelievable accomplishment that surpasses the total number of sterilizations ever performed on a World Vets small animal project. This outstanding feat not only speaks to the continual demand and need for sterilization services in the area. It also highlights the dedication and passion of our volunteers, and local partners, to help as many animals as possible during a limited amount of time.

However, even though we specialize in providing high volume spay/neuter campaigns, we never lose sight of how critically important it is to provide a profound level of kindness and excellent care to each individual animal. We value patient safety and quality patient care and are proud to be able to facilitate skilled veterinary care for countless animal populations around the world.

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Limited Time “Deposit Option” Available on Veterinary Field Projects

Volunteering on a World Vets veterinary field project just got easier! We are now offering a limited time “deposit option” on volunteer positions for select upcoming projects. At the time of registration, only half of the project fee will be due and the remaining half will be owed at a later date.

We are currently offering this opportunity on the following veterinary field projects;

Otavalo, Ecuador: August 8 – 15, 2017
Eligible for “tech/student” and “LVT/RVT” positions

St.Vincent & The Grenadines: August 16 – 23, 2017
Eligible for “LVT/RVT” positions

Our “tech/student” position may be filled by a licensed vet tech, non-licensed vet tech, vet student, pre-vet student, vet tech student and/or veterinary assistant. Read more about this volunteer position here

Our “LVT/RVT” position may be filled by a licensed, certified and/or registered veterinary technician and/or veterinary nurse. Read more about this volunteer position here

 

Thank you Team Cabarete! Success in the Dominican Republic

A World Vets team has just returned from a very successful spay/neuter campaign in the Dominican Republic! We not only provided 276 sterilizations, but also tended to many other surgical cases that were needed. All of which acted to greatly improve the overall health and wellbeing of each animal patient. We’d like to thank our dedicated volunteers as well as local partners Dogs and Cats of the Dominican Republic (DCDR) for an outstanding effort! See pictures

One special patient our team treated was a puppy named Bobby (pictured below). Bobby was hit by a motorbike and his front leg got run over. He received much needed TLC from our volunteers and after spending the night with them, was able to go home all patched up and good as new to his owner.

 

The Best Mother’s Day Gift? A Mother-Daughter World Vets Adventure

What’s the perfect Mother’s Day gift? A trip with World Vets! Drs Colleen Mullally and Petrice Eisele both brought their moms to volunteer alongside them on our most recent campaign in the Dominican Republic. Why not make your next trip a mother-daughter World Vets adventure?

Upcoming volunteer opportunities that still have vacancies are:

*If your mother does not have any veterinary and/or animal related experience, she can fill an “assistant” role on our veterinary field service projects. Read more about volunteer descriptions

Volunteer this Summer! Veterinary Field Project Opportunities

World Vets operates countless veterinary field projects to help thousands of animals receive quality veterinary care each year. What’s more, all veterinary services on such projects are provided free of charge for local pet owners and the community.

We have two small animal veterinary field projects scheduled this summer in the following locations:

Why don’t you join us!

Volunteer opportunities on veterinary field projects exist for veterinarians, veterinary technicians, students and assistants (those who do not have any previous veterinary or animal experience). Learn more about volunteer descriptions here

A Facility Serving the Community & Beyond: World Vets Latin America Veterinary Training Center

World Vets has been operating veterinary field service projects in Latin America since 2008. During our time working in this region of the world, we experienced that many local veterinarians and veterinary students with whom we worked had received minimal, if any, surgical instruction and in turn did not perform sterilizations. Meanwhile dog and cat populations ran rampant as the local capacity to de-sex animals, and thus humanely control their reproduction, was limited to non-existent.

To address the gap in veterinary surgical skill, in addition to animal population control efforts, World Vets founded the Latin America Veterinary Training Center (LATC) in 2011. The main objective, and cornerstone of the center, is to provide free surgical instruction and training to Latin American veterinarians and upper level veterinary students. As such, it is our aim to equip trainee participants with the necessary skills and competence they can in turn use to benefit the animals in their own communities. The center also prides itself on teaching as well as practicing high quality veterinary care. Subsequently, the facility is equipped with modern equipment such as central oxygen, pulse oximeters and fluid pumps, as well as an autoclave, ultrasound and microscope.

The LATC is located in Nicaragua and since its inception has established relations with all the veterinary schools in the country. It has even received acknowledgements from such institutions regarding the invaluable skills our training has provided its students. The LATC training program has also developed to the point where weekly sessions are offered year round and we host participants from many Latin American countries such as Mexico, Guatemala and Paraguay. We have also incorporated an ongoing internship program, which allows those selected to obtain greater clinical experience and mentorship.

Furthermore, as a result of the activities at the LATC, World Vets is able to provide thousands of free sterilizations and health treatments every year for local animals in Nicaragua. We operate daily pick ups/drop offs for animals living in outlying rural communities, which make spay/neuter and other needed veterinary services accessible for those who otherwise could not afford it. We even operate outreach clinics in other nearby areas benefiting animals, due to distance, do not have access to the LATC or our pick up/drop off service.

Often times we also encounter unique or emergency cases that require immediate attention. One such animal was Pinta. She had an old wound that had been growing and growing on her left hind leg. Her owners were very concerned but admitted they were not able to afford the transport into the city and the associated veterinary costs. Although challenging to the size of the wound, our LATC team was able to clean the wound of old tissue and close it enough to allow it to heal. After three weeks in our care, Pinta is almost healed and ready to go back to her family! Unfortunately without care, Pinta was unlikely to survive the infection. As Pinta’s case highlights, many local animals benefit greatly from the free services provided at the LATC, not only from spay/neuter but life saving veterinary interventions.

In short, the LATC greatly benefits its immediate community and beyond through the training and mentorship provided to its trainee participants. What’s more, it also provides essential veterinary services for local animals and rural communities who otherwise may never have access to quality veterinary care. If you support capacity building of future and present veterinary professionals, and if you believe that all animals deserve access to skilled veterinary care, we encourage you to support our Latin America Veterinary Training Center! We also accept corporate sponsorships and welcome other partnership opportunities.

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We’d like to thank Fondation Brigitte Bardot for their ongoing support of our Latin America Veterinary Training Center 

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