Animals trapped in unfortunate places. Animals hit by cars. Animals with major injuries. Animals who don’t look like they’re going to make it. If you’ve seen your fair share of animal rescue videos on the internet, then chances are, at least one of them has been from Animal Aid Unlimited.
Animal Aid runs a busy animal shelter and hospital in the city of Udaipur, India. Since its founding in 2022, the charity has seen thousands of sick or injured animals pass through its gates every year. Animal Aid exists not only to bring relief to stray animals in need, but also to inspire people to show compassion towards animals.
From inexperienced rescuers …
Prior to Animal Aid, there was nowhere to go in Udaipur, India if a street animal fell ill or got hurt.
“There were a couple of private vets, but they didn’t have very much experience with dogs…. Most of the vet training is oriented in India toward dairy production, artificial insemination, and animals that are used in farming,” said co-founder Erika Abrams in a 2018 interview with the radio show Talking Animals.
Realizing that the only way to help the animals of Udaipur was to do something about it herself, she founded Animal Aid together with her husband Jim and their daughter Claire.
Erika admits that Animal Aid was a “makeshift operation” at the beginning since they didn’t know much about rescuing animals. Their staff wasn’t very well-trained and they didn’t have a good rescue vehicle, either.
Fortunately, a lot of things have changed since then.
To internationally known charity
Eighteen years and countless rescues later, Animal Aid is now one of the leading street animal rescue centers in India.
Aside from responding to dogs, cows, donkeys, and other animals in need (more than 50 per day), the NGO also runs a spay/neuter and anti-rabies vaccination program, provides humane education in classrooms and around the community, and offers free first aid training for individuals who wish to help stray animals in their own cities, according to its official website.
As co-founder Jim Myers put it in Animal Aid’s 2016 promo video, “Animal Aid has been an opportunity to move people.”
5 incredible rescues
Here are just a few of the many amazing rescue operations that Animal Aid has carried out over the years. Animal lovers may witness these touching moments on the Animal Aid Unlimited, India YouTube channel.
1.Injured donkey on busy highway (2016)
The most viewed video on Animal Aid’s YouTube channel starts with a white donkey standing on a busy highway, badly wounded and looking forlorn.
Hobnob was hit by a speeding vehicle, leaving him with a huge gash on his right shoulder. He was in so much pain that he didn’t even resist when rescuers lifted him into the ambulance. The staff dressed his wound every morning for nearly two months, and Hobnob has since made a full recovery. The video ends with him socializing with other donkeys at the shelter and happily munching on grass.
2. Drowning dog in 70-foot well (2017)
In 2017, Animal Aid received a call about a dog who had fallen into a deep well. By the time rescuers arrived at the site, the poor pup was already exhausted – it looked like she had been trying to stay afloat for hours.
Armed with a hard hat and landing net, one of the rescuers was lowered into the murky waters. He then quickly eased the dog into the net once he reached her. Back at the Animal Aid headquarters, they found the dog’s paws bleeding from trying to hold on to a slippery rock. Other than that, she was none the worse – and very lucky.
3. Determined piglet with broken leg (2018)
Tinku the piglet was hit by a car, causing him to drag his back legs and be scared of people. After he was rescued by Animal Aid, it was discovered that he had a fractured femur in one hind leg and an injury in the othher.
Unable to stand or walk properly, Tinku needed six weeks of bed rest. The road to recovery wasn’t easy as his legs kept collapsing, but Tinku kept trying. Eventually, the little guy regained his strength and learned to walk again.
4. Gentle calf with smashed teeth (2019)
Another victim of a car accident, Autumn the calf had been hit in the face by a passing vehicle, leaving him with broken teeth and painful mouth wounds. Unable to nurse, he would have died of starvation if he hadn’t been rescued.
Together with his mom, Autumn was transferred to Animal Aid, where his jaw was stabilized and the broken teeth were removed. With daily wound dressings and his mom’s loving encouragement, Autumn was back to normal in just two weeks. He even made friends with all the other cows at the shelter!
5. Dog whose face had been eaten by maggots (2016)
Animal Aid rescuers found Kalu at a construction site, where he had crawled inside a hole to die. The despondent dog had a gaping hole in his face that was filled with maggots and left a large part of his skull exposed. It was one of the worst wounds that Animal Aid team had ever seen – so much so that they considered euthanasia. However, something in Kalu’s face grew back and his smile returned.
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