Elaine with Blue Cross of India ambulance ready to send community dogs for sterilization
“What can I do about it? I’m just one person?!”
We’ve all heard this lament from animal lovers who just do not know where to start helping animals.
For Elaine Philpott, long-time India resident, native of UK, that phrase simply never occurred to her.
Mahabalipuram villagers bring a community dog to send for sterilization
Through her diligent efforts, her project CARE–humane education and community dog sterilisation/rabies inoculation program–has just finished 70 dog sterisations in Mahabalipuram…demonstrating once again that you don’t have to have a complex infrastructure to help the dogs of your community.
Her routine is straightforward: walk from her house to the beach every day (about 1.5 km) carrying her bag of treats to entice the dogs, and various remedies for skin problems or wounds. By befriending them, they are usually easy to catch when it comes time to spay/neuter them. Elaine has developed a very positive relationship with the team at Blue Cross Chennai–more than an hour away–who come at pre-arranged intervals to pick up the dogs–as many as 20 at a go, for sterilization and rabies inoculations done in their Chennai facilities.
This cycle of care is educating the community and making them feel even more enthusiastic about their community dogs.
In her second year of ABC provision (many more years in animal voluntarism through Animal Aid in Udaipur and through her professional life as a veterinary nurse in the UK for 20 years) Elaine is quickly losing any sense of a private life, as her phone is apt to ring throughout most evenings right up to 10 pm.
“If I sit down to eat a meal, someone is sure to knock on the door. But nevermind, I’m just so happy that they have somewhere they can go for help, and that they really do care about the dogs on the street. That’s what I’m here for.”