IWCT’s Annual Trip To Guimaras And Iloilo

By Kaytie Grant

At the beginning of May, our team returned to Iloilo and Guimaras. We head there once a year to conduct free spay and neuter clinics and vaccinate the local dogs against rabies. Since the Covid pandemic, this is our third consecutive trip. Prior to lockdown we had already visited the islands twice. This long term commitment to helping specific areas is really starting to make a difference to controlling the dog population and reducing the cases of rabies.

guimaras and iloilo clinic

Better Known In Guimaras And Iloilo

We are also becoming better known in these areas for our work, which makes us more reputable and trusting. We need people to know of our dedicated, qualified veterinary team and that they can approach us and not the “quack” doctors still operating in some rural areas. Sadly, during our trip, we were presented with a male dog who had had his testicles tied with a rubber band as the owner had been ill informed that this was a method of castration. Thanks to our team, the dog has now been humanely spayed and is no longer in pain or at risk of infection. 

When we agree to do island or mobile clinics, we always have the long term vision in mind. We only want to commit if the hosting barangay or local veterinary officer is happy for us to return again and again in the future. We know from experience that one off clinics or a scattergun approach to spaying and vaccinating has less of an impact than regular clinics in specific areas. Smaller islands such as these have the benefit of being more contained, with less movement on animals. Therefore, with help from IWCT, when Rabies is eradicated, it is likely to stay that way. We have a great relationship with our hosts in Guimaras and Iloilo and we look forward to returning in 2025. 

pet owners in guimaras and iloilo

Our island clinics are made possible by two key main things:

  1. Our dedicated veterinary team. These vets work full time and volunteer themselves to IWCT in their spare time. When we run an island clinic over three or four days they use their holiday entitlement to help us as well as take time away from their families. They do this however because they want to help make a difference and reach those who are most in need. We are so grateful for their support. 
  2. Our loyal supporters. We simply cannot maintain these long term relationships and conduct regular clinics without generous donations from people like you. You can make a difference to the stray dog population and rabies incidences in the Philippines by supporting our clinic programme. For this, we thank you.   

Of course there are more people to add who can’t be forgotten – our office team who arrange all the logistics and our vet assistants. Then there’s the team back at the Treatment Centre: the kennelmates looking after the rescue dogs and grounds and housekeeping staff. It really is a team effort, whether on the road or at the Centre. 

If you can, please consider making a donation to help secure the future of our clinics in key areas like Guimaras and Iloilo. 

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