Torrential rains and new arrivals!

21 February 2017

News update from the Zimbabwe Animal Sanctuary

Torrential rain throughout Zimbabwe has left the Zimbabwe Animal Sanctuary lush and green, with rivers flowing fast and the dam spilling over - a truly welcome sight after so many years of poor rains and a long dry winter. After a dam burst upstream, the Sanctuary sustained considerable damage from flash floods; animal habitats and roads were washed away but thankfully the animals were unharmed. 

Patrick the Pig lost his house in the flood and then proceeded to add to the general woes by throwing a 200 kg tantrum and destroying the stable he had been temporarily housed in. Patrick continues to sulk and is not happy at all about having to share a house with the chickens!

Healing for Horace

The Sanctuary's resident character, Horace the vervet monkey, has made a remarkable recovery after the trauma of electrocuting himself on a high voltage power line and losing an arm back in late 2016. Watching him race across the lawn on his back legs, with a few casual somersaults in between, is proof that he has adapted incredibly well. He is still capable of all the mischief that has come to be expected of him – raids on the pantry and ambushing the other long-suffering human and animal residents of the volunteer house.

New Arrivals

The Sanctuary has had an influx of recent arrivals including Louie the sulphur crested cockatoo, two white faced owls and an eagle owl, that is destined for release back into the wild. There are six new Egyptian geese now living happily on the dam, 11 baby tortoises (MORE tortoises!), Bambi the goat and Ferdinand the bull. Ex-race horses, Spirit and Shelley, have found their perfect forever home after being rescued from horrific neglect and abuse on a mine; they will both need long-term rehabilitation and a lot of loving care. Clara the puppy has settled in nicely and has taken quite a shine to Sophie the baby ostrich, who has a severe injury to her leg and will need patience, love and gentle physio to help her walk again. Benjamin the Ecclectus parrot and his sidekick Cocky the cockatiel create daily havoc, egged on by the absolutely fabulous, and somewhat famous, Casper the umbrella cockatoo, who regularly lets the others out their cages. Casper’s exceptional taste in music sees him spending his days dancing to the Blues and following our extremely patient housekeepers around, constantly chatting and grumbling, while they attempt to carry out various domestic duties. 

We were also able to offer a retirement home to three senior dogs, one of whom had spent a year in SPCA kennels, as well as an abandoned three-legged dog called Red.

Michel the rescue kitten, who was dumped in a bucket in a ditch, found a perfect forever home and Sophie the rescue cat travelled with her devoted owners to a new life in the Philippines. Two of our rescue dogs, Scooby and Peanut, are headed to happy new lives in Scotland and Germany.


Harriet’s Adventures

Harriet the serval cat caused sleepless nights for a week after she headed off on an adventure into the wild. She returned looking lean and disheveled but full of smug serval secrets as to where she had been and what she had been up to!

Vaccinations, Sterilizations and Food!

The free community vet clinic for rural dogs in the rural area surrounding the sanctuary is a hugely positive and successful community outreach programme which has seen over 1,000 dogs sterilised and 1,500 vaccinated since 2015, as well as numerous sick and injured dogs treated, all free of charge. The project feeds 500 rural dogs each week – a happy day that we all look forward to! Owners must bring their dogs to be registered, sterilised and vaccinated and can then become eligible to bring their dogs for a weekly nutritious meal. Knowing that Tuesday is feeding day, some of the dogs simply arrive without their owners!

The project have just completed a mass sterilisation campaign in conjunction with Aware Trust Zimbabwe vets, Rodwell and Eugene. 48 sterilisations were carried out and 2 cases of biliary and 1 parvo puppy were also treated. One dog required stitches and one was treated for severe burns. One cat was spayed and one treated for an eye infection. Two elderly dogs suffering from malnutrition have now been added to the feeding programme together with the 48 animals sterilised.

Amazing Volunteers

The volunteer  programme began 2017 with the arrival of volunteers from Australia, Sweden, Norway and South Africa. Having a house full of dedicated animal lovers who have traveled so far to help is a great privilege, and we look forward to sending lots more volunteers throughout the year. The sanctuary is hectically busy from dawn to dusk and volunteers help in every single aspect while braving the difficult weather conditions that Zimbabwe has seen in January and February. Thank you all for being part of the family, for coming to Zimbabwe and for being such wonderful people, full of energy and love for the animal residents, and for sharing your Volunteer House with so many of them – yes it’s a little crazy but it’s the best fun ever!

Take a look at the latest photo gallery below to see what the volunteers, animals and staff have been up to!

To find out more about the project, please click here, or drop us an email to make an enquiry!

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