The charity has launched an appeal to raise £100,000 to support communities and the working horses, donkeys and mules affected by the pandemic.
“The country hit a record 414,188 new infections on 7 May and some states have imposed lockdown restrictions. As the pandemic rages on, loyal working animals are carrying essential supplies of food and water to keep their communities going and it’s vital they are kept healthy if their owners are to recover from the economic and health impacts of this crisis,” said a Brooke spokesman.
Charlotte Dujardin said like others, she has found it “deeply upsetting” watching the crisis in India.
“My heart goes out to all who are affected,” she said. “When I visited with Brooke in 2015 I was struck by the warm welcome and kindness I received from communities and I’m especially thinking of those people and their animals at this devastating time.
“Now more than ever, it’s important we keep animals healthy so that they can continue to support their communities.”
Alice Oppenheimer, who also visited India with the charity in 2015, said she was “heartbroken” to see the “devastating impact” of Covid-19.
“During my time in the country I saw first-hand the vital contribution that working animals make to livelihoods, so I’m pleased to be supporting Brooke’s emergency appeal ensuring they continue to receive support. If we’ve learnt one thing during this pandemic, it’s that we’re all in this together and it’s important we remember this as we think of those in India.”
The Indian government has classified veterinary care as essential and Brooke staff have been given special passes allowing them to reach animals and communities that are isolated and in desperate need.
A Brooke spokesman said donkeys are killed for their skins to fulfil the growing demand for ejiao, a gelatin used
“Lego is very sweet with him, I think he knows Eden is only little and he really looks after him”
“As with the first wave in 2020, staff are prioritising the use of telemedicine and, where possible, providing guidance to local health practitioners on the phone and via Whatsapp. If in-person assistance is needed, staff are taking all necessary precautions to keep themselves and communities safe, including social distancing, double-masking, and sanitising,” said the spokesman.
“Funds from the appeal will ensure that Brooke can continue to help animals in need for several months. Even when the surge in infections subsides, these remote communities will need their animals to be healthy in order to rebuild life after Covid-19.”
To donate visit: www.thebrooke.org.
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