Preparing for Cyclone Jawad
The Indian Meteorological Department or IMD warned of a severe cyclonic storm, Jawad, hitting Andhra Pradesh over the last weekend and this week. The IMD has predicted continuing heavy rainfall along the coast of Andhra Pradesh. The cyclone and its aftermath of severe depression and incessant rains have taken a great toll on organizations like VSPCA.
For us at VSPCA, there has been no respite from heavy rains since September that we are still trying to recuperate from. There are continuous wet periods proving to be extremely difficult for our staff members to help the animals in our shelters, and outside the shelters too. Along with the rains, we are also having to deal with the flu season as well as the new Omicron variant. These make the situation fraught with risk for human and animal health. In particular, feeding and taking care of the larger animals is a daily challenge.
Since our shelters are hard-hit with the heavy rains, water is logged everywhere. Water has entered the quarantine areas for the animals, as well as the areas where our special needs animals rest. Our team has been working around the clock to make sure that the animals are safe, dry, and healthy. Along with these high-pressure situations, we are called upon to attend emergency cases as well as continue the ABC programs for cats and dogs. VSPCA has remained on top of this as the leader of ABC programs in the region and neighbouring district of Vizianagaram.
Due to the bad weather and heavy rains, we have also been experiencing constant power cuts which makes animal care much more difficult. Animals also experience fear and need care at night; many are nocturnal in circadian rhythm. Our staff members are experiencing swollen feet and ankles from standing in the water for long periods of time, falling sick from the rain, and feeling exhausted from working 15-20 hour shifts a day. We provide them with a variety of equipment and boots, but as all animal workers will tell you, they are often comforted in bare feet, manoeuvring large animals.
The wet conditions are also breeding grounds for various diseases that affect the animals. We have to make sure that the animals at the shelter are safe from these diseases and that we have in stock, ample amount of medicine and food for such cases.
We humbly appeal to all our well-wishers, donors, and patrons to help us take care of the animals residing in our shelters as well as outside. Our priority is making sure that the animals are safe, dry and healthy and we look for your support to help us in doing that.