Yesterday we were doing a mobile veterinary clinic for the Rural Wellness Initiative just outside of Shabramant/Abu Sir, a farming area of Giza that is south of the Giza plateau. With all the governmental unrest and changes in the past few years, agricultural services to farmers have essentially died in Egypt, so members of my farm staff, some veterinarians and members of the Donkey Sanctuary staff have gotten together to provide free vet care for the small farmers in a roughly 300 acre square. Neighbours and friends donate money to buy simple preventative care veterinary medications such as wormers, vitamins, and antibiotics for wound care. The Donkey Sanctuary trained our staff in hoof trimming, abscess treatment and also how to flush the tear ducts of donkeys, which when blocked cause the tears to run down the donkeys' faces attracting flies which infect the skin with parasites causing long open sores on the face.
We have found a local craftsman to manufacture sturdy fly masks to protect the donkeys' faces from the flies, more humane halters that help to control wayward donkeys without causing damage to their noses as is caused by the usual chain halters, and noseband covers to prevent chain damage for people who are using the chain halters.
But a huge part of the fun of this work is seeing the children of the countryside playing, like these two girls who were on their way home from school and hitched a ride on a VERY slow moving truck. As it slowed even more to pass our clinic site, a little boy joined them on the bumper.