JAAGRUTI®

Treating Dogs with Maggot infestations

On-site First Aid Treatment for Prevention and Cure of Maggot wounds in Street Animals:

It is the onset of warm weather and humid conditions that trigger an onset of maggot wound related queries on our helpline and the below treatment protocol has been shared aplenty by us through our website www.jaagruti.org, e-mail queries and blog based queries.

A horrifying number of street animals die tragic and slow painful deaths owing to maggot infestations. But, maggot wounds can be prevented and treated on site very easily (if noticed before it is too late) and these unfortunate deaths can be prevented if animal welfare volunteers read through this article below and back the knowledge so acquired with animal handling skills and some amount of patience, determination and dedication; all of which are essential qualities that are required to help heal a voiceless animal.

What are Maggots and how do they infest an animal? : 

Flies get attracted to garbage, carcasses, rotting food, open wounds and faeces and use them as substrate to lay their eggs. A particular type of fly, called screwworm flies has a special fondness to lay its eggs on fresh, untreated open wounds on any animal’s body and that is what can trigger maggot infestation. These wounds could be there on an animal’s body due to a fight they might have gotten into, itching, licking, accidental injuries etc. A wound of the size of a pinhole may be enough for a fly to get attracted and lay eggs on. In areas the animal can reach with his tongue, these fly eggs are usually licked off. Danger areas for an animal where maggot infestations are common are the ears, anywhere on the head and neck, back of the body, anus.

These eggs, once laid on the wound site of an animal can hatch within a few hours into larvae or “maggots”, which start out very small just like a thin rice grain but then start feeding into the flesh and organs of any animal (be it a calf, a cat, a tiger or a dog) and then they (maggots) grow fat and up to an inch long. Alongside, they penetrate into the animal’s body and the wound increases in surface area and deepens in no time, resulting in more flies getting attracted to that side and laying even more eggs, thereby infesting it even further with maggots.

Left untreated, maggot wounds are fatal as the animal may die due to the maggots tunnelling into their brain or vital organs (depending on the site of the wound), blood loss or secondary infections.

Where and how will you see maggots or understand that the animal is infested with maggots and requires treatment?

You won’t see maggots crawling like ticks or lice on the skin surface or hair, instead what you will see is a ‘hole’ in the body of the animal and maggots crawling their way on the wound surface or inside it eating away the flesh and the most potent indicator that an animal has a maggot wound would be that you will smell rotting flesh. This stinking smell will only get worse as the maggots multiply and penetrate through the body of the unfortunate animal.

How to prevent Maggot infestation? 

Prevention is surely better than cure, when it comes to Maggot wounds. Please try to understand that maggot wounds can be fatal/life threatening if not treated on time. Also, note that maggot infestations occur when any small wound on an animal’s body is left untreated and in most cases, that is where it all starts from and especially so in warm, hot and humid weather!

So, if you notice that your neighbourhood street dog/cat/cow/donkey has an open wound, follow the steps below to prevent that wound from becoming infested with maggots:

  1. Clean the wound site with cotton dipped in weak Tincture Iodine solution (this is stronger and works better for wound cleaning in animals). If you cannot procure weak Tincture Iodine solution, please purchase Povidone-Iodine solution (available from your neighbourhood chemist shops under brand names, Betadine, Cipladine or Wokadine etc.). This is followed by outing Nebasulf or Neosporin powder on the wound site. These powders help dry the wound and can be purchased off the local chemist shop as well.
  2. Then to prevent flies from sitting and laying eggs on this wound site, paste a layer of Himax, an ayurvedic veterinary fly/insect repellent, broad spectrum skin ointment (Manufactured by Ayurvet Ltd.) – on top of the wound. Himax ointment has a strong smell and pungent taste, which prevents the animals from licking it. As part of the On-site Street Animal First Aid service that we at JAAGRUTI™ run, we have also applied liberally on the wound site, a layer of another veterinary ointment, Lorexane (Manufactured by Virbac India) to promote wound healing and tissue regeneration and then topping that layer up with Himax ointment. When we choose to mix both ointments and apply them together, then the proportion of Lorexane ointment: Himax ointment was 5:1.
  3. For those of you who think that restraining an animal to clean their wound and apply ointments as directed in Steps 1 and 2 is difficult to execute, then you must consider investing in topical veterinary sprays like D-Mag spray (Manufactured by Intas Pharmaceuticals Ltd.) or Topicure spray (Manufactured by Natural Remedies Pvt. Ltd.), both of which help kill maggots as well as promote wound healing. Alternatively, if sprays are not available, you can invest in veterinary powders with wound healing and maggoticidal properties like Gotbac powder (Manufactured by Scientific Remedies Pvt. Ltd.) or Negasunt powder (Manufactured by Bayer) that can be directly applied on an animal/dog’s open wound.
  4. Please note:
    1. Keep repeating the above steps till the open/bleeding wounds on the animal’s body heal. It is important that we don’t take it easy on this as leaving even the tiniest bit of untreated wound would be an opening for the maggots to creep in and cause ‘destruction’!
    2. All veterinary (i.e. animal-specific) sprays, ointments and powders listed in Steps 2 and 3 above can be purchased only through a pet supplies shop or veterinarian’s clinic only and not at your neighbourhood chemist shop.
    3. Steps 1 to 3 listed above under this section are preventive in intent and will help heal an animal’s open wound and prevent flies from turning it into a horrible maggot wound.

How to treat a maggot infested wound?

Once you spot a wound-hole on the body and smell of rotting flesh in an animal, be rest assured that the smell is of maggots chewing away on the animal’s flesh. Any time wasted hereafter will only increase the maggot wound/infestation in size and prolong the animal’s suffering and pain, please ACT FAST and follow the steps below:

  1. KILLING THE MAGGOTS: The first objective should be to kill the maggots and to do that, we use the following options after restraining/muzzling the animal:
    1. Pour a capful or two of medicinal turpentine oil over the wound site. If the wound is deep seated and the only thing you see is a hole outside, then take this turpentine oil into an empty plastic syringe (without the needle) and then push the Turpentine oil into the ‘hole’. Then just let it act over the next 6-8 hours, as the medicine takes effect, you will either see the maggots popping out of the wound on the floor or large chunks of glued insects/dissolved and held together like blobs of pus coming out of the wound.
    2. However, if you can’t find Medicinal Turpentine oil at the chemist’s shop…then please remember – DO NOT PUT Painter’s Turpentine oil/kerosene oil/petrol/phenyl etc.into the maggot wound. We have noticed that, ignorant of the above fact, a lot of people residing in slums or villages and even otherwise in cities do put all of these into a maggot wound which they should NOT DO; because the sheer toxicity of phenyl, petrol and kerosene can prove fatal and burn the good tissues of the animals, especially in sensitive areas like the head, ear (these chemicals can reach the brain through these organs). So our suggestion is that in case you don’t find Medicinal Turpentine oil, invest in maggoticidal (i.e. maggot killing) veterinary sprays like D-Mag spray or Topicure spray and then place it as close to the maggot wound site and then spray it in hard 4-5 times or even more as required. Doing so will have the same effect as those described above post-application of Turpentine oil. This part of the treatment (Steps 1 a. and 1 b.) will cause pain to the animal, but for their own welfare it is necessary that you use it. Please remember, the burning sensation will pass, but if unattended, the maggots will kill the animal.
  2. REMOVING DEAD MAGGOTS: Check the wound to see if the maggots show signs of life. Even when you think you have removed all the maggots, inspect the inside of the wound thoroughly with a torch. Maggots often create tiny tunnels leading from the main wound deeper into the body of the dog. You may not see the maggots in these tunnels. One giveaway is that the bloody fluid in the hole/holes will appear to be moving, literally “breathing,” if you watch carefully for a few minutes. A common error is not waiting long enough to observe this movement. As a precaution, even when you think you have removed all the maggots, spray the inside of the wound with the D-Mag or Topicure sprays. The pungent Turpentine/eucalyptus oil smell will irritate the maggots and they will start emerging from the tunnel. Once you think they are dead and if you are brave and determined, take a sterile tweezers/forceps to remove/pluck out the dead maggots from the wound. Do remember to clean the tweezers/blunt forceps with antiseptic solutions like Spirit /Savlon/Dettol solution prior to use.
  3. CLEANING THE WOUND: Keep clean cotton wool handy and dip it in weak Tincture Iodine solution or Povidone Iodine solution to disinfect the wound site.
  4. WOUND DRESSING:
    1. Put Negasunt or Gotbac powder into and over the wound.
    2. Next step is to liberally apply Lorexane ointment and layer the wound surface or fill up the hole/wound with this. As stated earlier, in this article, Lorexane cream helps heal the damaged wound site by promoting tissue regeneration, while also keeping the flies away.
    3. The most important step at the end is to apply Himax ointment liberally over the wound site to prevent any more flies from sitting on the wound and re-infesting it further with maggots.
  5. Slowly in a few days, fresh skin will start appearing and the open and wide maggot infested wound will heal and you will be glad that your little effort and investment helped save a life for sure…as maggot infestations don’t go away or cure or heal on their own, human intervention in the ways described above are absolutely essential!
  6. Remember to keep repeating the above steps till the wound heals, with a periodicity of 12-24 hours at the start of the treatment and then every other day till the wound heals and seals itself. Treating maggot wounds requires loads of patience, they don’t heal overnight, so please keep up the good work till the animal has healed completely.

We believe following the above steps does help and over July 2014 to November 2014, as part of the On-site First Aid Service for Street Animals that we at JAAGRUTI™ run in North West Delhi, we have followed the steps detailed in this article to treat on-site (i.e. on the very streets these animals live) 24 animals with maggot infested wounds. This included 2 donkeys and 22 dogs and depending on the severity of wounds, it has taken us 2 weeks to 4 weeks to treat all animals. We have been able to do this only because people from the community, where this maggot infested animal was being treated came forward to handle the animal while our team, was administering treatment; and also ensured that the wounded animal was being fed well to help speed up their recovery. From our end, after doing topical treatment to clean and dress the maggot wound, we were also using assistance from trained veterinary professionals to inject the required dosage of antibiotics, Inj. Ivermectin and multivitamins to kill deep seated maggots, minimise infections and promote wound healing. Please consult your local veterinarian and use tablets and syrups mixed in feed to substitute for injectables.

Do let us know if the above works for you too.

Please refer to this Slideshow on Treatment of Maggot Wounds in Dogs

By Vasudha Mehta, Co-founder & Trustee, JAAGRUTI™: 

 

This winters, spread some warmth to the ‘Cold, Hungry and Voiceless’

Have a Heart that cares💓🐶

Its chilly and cold today in North of India. Its raining too…open the gates of your verandah, hearts and home to give temporary shelter to these voiceless animals. Place a piece of rug, jute sack, old blanket for a bedding.

The gesture will warm them up as well as your heart & soul.

Be human. Be kind. The world will become a better place this way!

Discourage snake charmers!

Snake Charmers know very well how to make money by exploiting belief. It’s upto us to rid ourselves of superstitions and pity!

The traumatic life of a Snake held captive!

They don’t drink milk naturally rather they are forced ro drink it by keeping them deprived of water and thirsty, for being reptiles, they only want water

Fangs and teeth are broken resulting in an infected mouth. The infection soon spreads to the other parts of the body

Milk is usually vomited out as Snakes can’t digest it

Stitched mouth

Cobras are caught several weeks before the festival of Nagpanchami or generally for street entertainment or by Sages/Sadhus who roam around in saffron robes, conning pilgrims and innocent people!

The mouths of these Cobras are stitched, fangs and teeth are broken, they are locked up in dark, unhygenic baskets for several days, they are offered no food or water, haldi, kumkum and other irritants are sprinkled on them, forced to drink fluids (milk) that they can not digest (they vomit it out!), they are roughed up and tortured to show their hoods at each and every devotee’s house.

How much more can these reptiles handle? They really can’t and suffer a slow, agonizing death.

Take action – if you spot a snake charmer, firstly never pay & encourage them, inform the local Forest Department, NGOs working for snakes/wildlife conservation and even the nearest Police Station.

Spread this message to as many as possible and let’s save these reptiles together.

Photos used in this Article are kind courtesy of “Friends of Snakes Society

Say NO to Kite Flying

Kite flying is done with fun and fervour across India on the occasion of Makar Sankranti/Uttarayan festival and on India’s Republic Day and Independence Day cebrations held in the month of January and August, respectively.

Every year, thousands of birds across India lose their wings and their lives due to injuries caused by the glass-coated kite flying maanja/string, used for flying kites and in kite flying competitions. These are usually Made in China and are preferred over the traditional Indian cotton thread string/”saddi”, as they are sharp and help cut the other person’s kite string and help people win bets, games and kite-flying competitions.

What people don’t realise is that their moment of pleasure and entertainment is blood-sucking! As heads, wings or claws of birds are mutilated by maanja, once entangled in it. Birds die of excessive blood loss or are crippled for life.

Please let us not entertain ourselves at the cost of these lives.

Not only does this glass-coated manja hatm animals and birds, it has also fatally harmed kids, adults and bikers.

Flying kites with manja is definitely no fun for families who lose their loved ones or for birds who become entangled and fatally injured in the deadly glass-coated string.

Manja is deadly to thousands of pigeons, crows, owls and other birds who get entangled in it. The birds’ wings are often severed, dooming the animals to an agonising death.

Even after the kite flying festivals are over, these manjas which remain entangled on electricity poles or tree branches, continue to entrap them.

Read the story of one such pigeon here-

https://jaagruti.org/2011/07/31/a-school-presentation-a-teacher-delhi-fire-service-and-a-rescued-pigeon/

Some Ahmedabad, Gujarat based helpline numbers are shared below:

What’s a Zoo?

A Zoo is nothing but a prison, where innocent animals are held captive for life, for no fault of theirs.

Be the Change. Say NO to ZOOS.

Animals also feel emotions. Watch the Video

Who says, animals don’t have emotions? They too can feel, emote, be happy, be sad…just that we need to *be human* enough understand their language 🙏

Water is every body’s need

Water is crucial to every living being’s survival on this Planet, be it plants, animals, birds, insects, fishes….every ‘living’ being needs it.

The Animal Water Bowl Project is thus worth including In Your ‘Yearly’ Resolution List.

You can pledge or encourage your kids to pledge that, “Everyday I will provide safe drinking water to all the animals at my place”.

Not only will it inculcate a feeling of responsibility and compassion, but also give great satisfaction when you/your kids actually see thirsty birds, animals and insects quenching their thirst, thanks to the clean water you put out for them daily.

These voiceless innocent beings need safe drinking water too, just like Humans. And, as we humans are responsible for destroying the habitats and rivers, that they relied on, all in the name of development, it is now our responsibility to save their lives by providing the things which are possible rather than ignoring them.

AWBP India_Animal Water Bowl Project
Art by Carolina Mamani (artwork made as per the idea was given by the founder of AWBP INDIA). Artist gave complete rights on this artwork to AWBP INDIA and we at JAAGRUTI give complete credit to AWBP and the Artist for this beautiful piece of Art and the lovely message, that prompted us to share it on our platform to reach and sensitize more people.

This New Year, be KIND

Love has no colour, race or species and Kindness to Animals, birds and all lesser beings will only make this world a compassionate and a better place to live in…

Think over this for a moment

Know the signs of Heat Stroke in Dogs

Dogs are not as efficient at releasing heat as we are; they are built to conserve rather than release heat and tend to heat up faster than we do. Dogs do not sweat in the same way humans do and can easily become overheated, which can lead to heat stroke and severe medical complications.

Watch for the above-described signs of heat stroke in dogs and contact a veterinarian immediately if you suspect your dog is in distress. 

Your dog’s saliva may be sticky due to dehydration and if shock sets in, they may experience seizures and collapse — which can be fatal. Petsshowing signs of heat stroke should be cooled down as soon as possible and should always be checked by a veterinarian.

What to do if you find a Dehydrated Bird?

Summers are here. Animals and Birds face as much difficulties with soaring temperatures as we do. Place a water bowl for birds and animals near your home/office places. Remember, however to clean the bowl and place fresh water in there daily.

You are more likely to spot Large birds like Kites in dehydrated condition having fallen flat on the ground in this weather.

Share this awareness poster made by the good folks at Jivdaya Charitable Trust Ahmedabad that educates us on what we need to do if we spot a dehydrated bird.

fb_img_1524575798026272674682.jpg

 

Why is the ‘SDMC Pet Poop Fine Project’ legally incorrect?

Below is the copy of the Legal Notice sent by a Delhi based Animal Welfare Activist Rishi Dev to the Concerned Office Bearers in the SDMC i.e. South Delhi Municipal Corporation.

It is to be noted that SDMC had advertised with a lot of media coverage their ‘intent’ to levy a fine of Rs.500 and ‘haul up’ every pet owner any time that they err and do not pick up the poop off their pet dog.

While we at JAAGRUTI strongly endorse ‘responsible pet ownership’ and do encourage pet owners to pick the poop up after their dog has done it and help keep the surroundings clean and do it ourselves as well, what these SDMC these office bearers should understand that in a country in-famous for open defecation, is that such a one-sided dictat has to be thought through before being ‘imposed’ lest it gets misused by the Municipality staff and RWA (Resident Welfare Association) office bearers to ‘harass’ pet owners and many street dog caretakers. In any case, with pet abandonment on a rise in big cities, such ill-thought out words coming out someone in as responsible a public position like a Mayor of the Corporation, will only instigate more people to abandon their pets.

Instead through awareness messages, SDMC should encourage environment-friendly messages on the relevance of picking up a pet dog’s poop, not using polythene bags, planting trees, relevance of Street Dog Animal Birth Control and Anti-Rabies Vaccination drives etc. What we as a Country and as Indians need is some sensitivity and compassion and Empathy drilled into our minds to encourage responsible citizenship rather than ill-thought of dictats that only offend some and appease some.

In Rishi’s own words, “The following legal notice was sent to the concerned officials. Also the MANY MANY letters that animal lovers wrote to SDMC Mayor had their effect. As of now SDMC cannot implement this law, in the absence of a proper legal procedure. Plus they have not replied to our legal notice and have not defended their stand. Thanks to all the genuine animal lovers who participated in this campaign. If SDMC still goes ahead with this without a legal procedure, then contempt proceedings will be initiated. If anyone comes to know that they are discreetly going ahead then kindly inform us.

TAKE ACTION: South Delhi people can still keep writing letters to the SDMC Mayor whose address is in the Notice-remember to send your letters registered Via India Post. Keep the Receipt of the Post safe with you.

It is a very self-explanatory notice that touches upon a lot of issues and thus it is important every street dog caretaker as well as Pet owner reads it.

 

%d bloggers like this: