Showing posts from 2017

Protection Against Animal Cruelty- WHAT ARE WE DOING ABOUT IT?

Our vets in the ALL CREATURES Clinic had some extraordinary work to do this month. We had several cases of abuse and neglect but none as bad as Biscuit's, a small puppy who was rescued by a film crew in Kasungu after seeing his owner kick and beat it with a stick. The beating was so bad, Biscuit needed a metal rod put into his shoulder, which was quite a complex surgery (see xray below). Biscuit is only about 5 months old, which means he should fully heal and soon be able to walk without pain or a limp. It is an absolute atrocity to hear of someone beating a puppy this young. We are so happy the members of the film crew came to his rescue and immediately took him away from his owner, no questions asked. Luckily Biscuit is still the world's happiest puppy who greets everyone he sees and is desperate for playmates! Our vets also had a case where Frozy (pictured below) had been stoned by his owner's neighbors, badly enough to hav…


In Malawi and indeed many African countries that I have lived, the phrases ‘animal rights’ and ‘animal welfare’ are often used interchangeably, but there is a significant difference between the two. It is therefore our role as animal welfare people to try and paint the difference between these two significantly different ideologies as any advocate for animal compassion is dismissed immediately as a space wasting animal rightist in most social settings.  It is with cynicism that most animal well being advocates are viewed by the general public and sadly also by policy developers. This is indeed the reason why most African countries grapple with archaic or even non-existent animal utilization regulations. Animal utilization by man-kind has been documented in many different spheres of society that varies from status, haulage, food, war, medicine, tourism, culture & tradition, security and even worship. This is by no means an exhaustive list of human use for animals but demonstrates …


Our ALL CREATURES staff have been very busy this month, as we officially opened our second office in Mzuzu (find our story below). With our additional office, we welcome new staff members to the team: Vet Manager Dr. Bruce Mwiinga, Administrative Assistant Tionge Namatumbo, vet nurses Faith Pemba, Mercy Zimba, and intern Blessings Chilanga. Dr. Bruce comes to us from Zambia where he recieved a degree in Veterinary Science from the University of Zambia. He came to Malawi as manager of the East Coast Fever (ECF) vaccination campaign we held in Mzimba district. He specializes in livestock health and does livestock vaccination clinics throughout Mzuzu.  In addition to the opening of a new office, we hosted three vet volunteers from the Netherlands. They assisted us greatly with the spay and neuter clinic in Mzuzu as well as with pertinent diagnosis and operations at the Lilongwe clinic. These kinds of volunteer opportunities provide an important mutually beneficial…


After establishing our new Mzuzu Animal Resource Centre, we conducted a mass rabies vaccination campain at the Veterinary Clinic that is located in Kanigina Mzuzu. Rabies is among the worst zoonotic disease in the world and responsible for over 70,000 human deaths annually. The control of this viral disease control continues to pose global public health challenges in the developing world. In developing countries, over 90% of conīŦrmed and reported cases of human exposure are from domestic dogs.

In Malawi ALL CREATURES ANIMAL WELFARE TRUST partnered with the Mzuzu City Council, Mzuzu ADD and the Humane Society International to rid Mzuzu City of this killer disease. In August ALL CREATURES run a similar exercise with the Community Veterinary Clinic (Florida) under the Community Health Coalition to vaccinate all the dogs in Enkwendeni in South Mzimba.
The rabies vaccination clinic held on the 2nd December vaccinated over 640 dogs from three surrounding village wards. This event was collect…


ALL CREATURES plays a vital role in the prosecution of animal welfare offenders in Malawi. Primarily, we work hand in hand with the police and the courts to bring perpetrators to justice. It is on this premise that ALL CREATURES came to be involved in the prosecution case against the owners of Hercules, a beautiful white affectionate German shepherd. Every animal deserves the best life possible and where human beings are a hindrance to this basic right, action must be taken against them to first of educate them about the ills of their conduct and also to serve as a deterrent to other people who are in the habit of ill-treating animals. 
In November 2016, when news from concerned parties reached ALL CREATURES of a dog who was being neglected in Area47, one of Lilongwe’s high-end suburbs, ALL CREATURES immediately rushed to evaluate the extent to which the said dog was ill-treated. Our assessment determined at once that the conditions under which the dog was living were far below par a…


Driving through Lilongwe can be a lot of things; you may feel glad that the people are generally warm and helpful if you need directions for instance. You also may feel a sense of slight annoyance with the drivers and traffic especially if patience is not exactly your strong suit. If you love animals, well, then you will feel a vast range of emotions, ranging from the excitement and thrill of a surprise sighting of a hyena perhaps, especially during the night if you drive around City-centre, to anger which could escalate to rage at the sight of the “Road-side Puppy Peddlers” who are strewn all across Lilongwe.

You just can’t drive through Lilongwe and not be faced with the sheer cruelty of people dangling dehydrated little puppies and kittens on so many junctions and corners of the city. What is even worse is the smug attitude that the sellers have as many of them have been in and out of jail on numerous occasions and know that they will still come out of jail to continue their trade w…


Our relationship with the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) has been very productive, because of it, the Humane Education program in Malawi is increasingly gaining ground; we are certainly off to a good start. Since the program’s commencement, ALL CREATURES has successfully established eleven clubs in various primary schools within Lilongwe city, namely; Lilongwe Boys, Lilongwe LEA, Kawale, Biwi, Kliyeka, Chirambula, Chinsapo, Kafulu, Likuni Boys, Mbidzi and Chimutu primary schools. We have had an average of two club sessions with each school. Club sizes differ depending mostly on student population, the same with frequency of meetings which currently is dependent on the school calendars.

The willingness of Head teachers in the various schools to host and establish the Humane Education clubs for their students has been remarkably overwhelming. In each school, several teachers have more than willingly offered to be patrons or matrons for the clubs. Each time that the educatio…


Learn more about Dr Richard Ssuna the Director and CEO of ALL CREATURES, know what inspires him and his thoughts about animal welfare in Malawi

1. Who is Dr. Ssuna and what role does he play with regards animal welfare in Malawi?

I’m Kenyan born, Ugandan raised and both Ugandan and British trained veterinarian with a strong desire for promoting animal welfare in Africa. I initially came to for a three months’ consultancy with Born Free Foundation to start the veterinary programme at the Lilongwe Wildlife Centre, that had so many animals but without any veterinary capacity at the time. My stay was extended for two years under joint tenure with the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and Born Free Foundation. 

It is at this time way back in 2009 that I started the animal welfare campaign with the Lilongwe Society for the Protection and Care of Animals. Some of my works included the sensitization of the Malawi Police, Judiciary and the entire public on the Animal Protecti…


Do you ever wonder what the growing concern with the “Donkey Trade” is about? Maybe you have a vague comprehension of the gist but not the particulars about the matter. Donkeys have over centuries been of great help to mankind; they have been used in agriculture, transport, and in some societies, they are used for medicine. According to Dr. Ssuna, “more than half the world’s population depends on donkeys for power…misconception of their endurance leads to welfare issues” (Ssuna, 2016,p.15). The recent hike in concern over Donkey welfare has arisen due to the recent increase in demand for donkey hides by the Chinese.

Traditionally, the Chinese use donkey hides to make Ejiao, a sticky gelatin like substance which is believed to be medicine to cure several conditions such as insomnia, coughs and is also believed to be a beauty potion. Donkey skin is said to be rich in collagen which is beneficial for the skin. Even though Ejiao and this use of donkeys is age-old in China, the recent rise…


Animal health is a crucial component of animal welfare; it is based on this premise that ALL CREATURES Animal Resource Centre, a tributary of the ALL CREATURES Animal Welfare Trust, was established. Since June 2016, the Animal Resource Centre has been providing the residents of Lilongwe and beyond with veterinary services which are aimed at improving the wellbeing of animals. Although the centre was providing much needed services, the centre was keen on improving the services provided. The centre was still in need of some essential equipment that would allow for the provision of excellent professional service.
In less than a year of commencing our operations at the Animal Resource Centre, we have been able to source state of the art equipment which has augmented the quality of service that we provide. We now have an X-Ray, Digital Developer, Anesthetic Machine, Oxygen Concentrator, and Olympic Precision Microscope all of which we received from various well-wishers, including “Project V…


Chinsapo is just about a 7-10 minute drive from the central business district of old town in Lilongwe, although it is very close to the city’s hub, Chinsapo is an urban, high density, low income area. And as is the case with many Malawian families, many families in Chinsapo have pets. The most common being cats and dogs, but it has been the case, again as is the case with in many low income communities in Malawi that the cats and dogs are barely ever spayed or neutered. This is not due to the fact that the people in these communities know nothing about spaying and neutering but has more to do with the depth of knowledge on the benefits of spay and neuter. Another reason why the dogs and cats in these communities are barely spayed or neutered is because the people in these communities are unable to pay for the required surgery as they cannot afford to due to the strength of their earning power.

All of these factors led to the selection of Chinsapo as the project area of a week-long spay…