a wide school of thought that somehow believes poor people shouldn't
own pets. Those who think so should meet the clients of Mdzananda
Animal Clinic, a partner organisation of the International Fund
for Animal Welfare (IFAW). Mdzananda provides the only permanent,
on site veterinary services to the dogs and cats of the more
than one-million people who live in Khayelitsha, near to Cape
Town, South Africa.
Highly respected and supported by the
community, Mdzananda Animal Clinic was founded in 1996 in
response to the need to provide primary veterinary healthcare
services to a fast growing community that had no access to
help for their animals.
Initially it worked from a single donated shipping
container and with no running water or electricity. Today
thanks to the support of IFAW and others the project runs
from six recycled shipping containers, on its own land and
is fully serviced. It receives no financial support from the
City of Cape Town.
Mdzananda's services include free sterilisations,
and low cost or free treatments such as dipping, deworming
and vaccination of dogs and cats. Its services are provided
five-and-half-days a week, and an emergency service operates
after hours and on Sundays. Mobile outreach clinics are held
on weekday afternoons.
The project has a vibrant and busy volunteer
programme and regularly hosts visiting veterinarians, veterinary
nurses and vet techs.