Amber Abroad: Part 3 – On A Mission To Save Lives And Change Attitudes

Veterinary care not only saves the lives of the animals in Cambodia but also the people. The systems we’ve set up in the States that focus on preventing rabies in our animal population have become extremely efficient, and help us rest assured that rabies is not lurking around every corner. Unfortunately, for the citizens of Cambodia, this is not the case.

Rabies Is A Common Threat

Imagine if each time your child left your house to go outside to play, that you had to worry that this may be the day they’re infected with rabies. Children are the most at risk for this terrifying possibility due to their willingness to play with stray dogs, and they’re the vast majority of those who are dying each day because of it.

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There are about 5 million dogs in Cambodia, with rabies circulating widely among them.  About 800 people a year die from rabies in Cambodia, and 90% of those cases are due to dog bites. So understandably, so many Cambodians are genuinely fearful of stray dogs and the potential they have to take away their loved ones.

With how unlikely it is to recover from a rabies infection, veterinary medicine may be the only way to save lives in the future. In third world countries where veterinary care is not easily accessible, you end up with two major problems; an overwhelming stray animal population and disease that runs rampant among them. This is where the dedicated animal professionals of these countries step in to save the day and help these furry friends become safe members of society.

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Addressing The Problem

Animal organizations like PPAWS not only care deeply for the dogs and cats that roam the streets of their country but also offer invaluable services to their people. The PPAWS team spends their time going from street to street to vaccinate stray dogs for rabies, as well as traveling to different cities and villages in their country to provide these same services.

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They do this work completely free of charge, just to ensure that every single animal and citizen can benefit.  

By vaccinating every dog that crosses their path and offering free spay and neuter operations around the country, PPAWS can change the current reality for so many humans and animals. By showing that dogs and cats can be safe members of your community and family through a simple vaccine, this, in turn, improves the lives of these animals since fewer people are afraid of them.

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Veterinary missions provide the locals with animals they can trust and also helps to educate them on how easy it is to be kind to an animal that means you no harm. It’s amazing how something so simple can have such a massive impact.

The Result Of These Life Saving Missions

Veterinary missions around the country help to give the locals peace of mind when they see a stray animal. By not associating such a deadly and terrifying disease with the dogs that share their streets, the fear they once had is automatically lessened. With less stray animals roaming the streets, this provides a safer environment for animals and humans of the community.

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These missions result in less animal cruelty, more locals inviting animals into their homes, and a significant decline in rabies-related deaths each year. These efforts truly save lives and create a ripple effect that implements kindness towards animals country-wide.

By educating the locals during these missions, the PPAWS is working to help establish veterinary medicine as a common practice. Each year that passes proves to be an improvement in the lives of animals, and that is a direct result of their work and other organizations like PPAWS.

Since the PPAWS team does this free of charge, they run entirely on donations from animal lovers like you. If you’d like to donate toward the efforts of the passionate animal advocates of Cambodia, you can donate here!

Check out Part 2 in my series – Amber Abroad: Cambodians & Their Love Of Animals

Image Source: Vettechandtravel/Insta

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