We had a new experience here at the Veterinary Department the other week. We had been contacted by El Refugio del Burrito, our rescue centre in Spain, who asked for help concerning a donkey they had rescued. This donkey had extremely overgrown unbalanced hooves that were causing severe problems walking and the farrier in Spain had asked for a second opinion regarding trimming as they had not come across a problem like this before. Up stepped our expert farrier Matt to offer advice, however how to deliver this with the language and distance barrier was a concern. Luckily one of our vets, Elena, is Spanish so that was the language barrier sorted…now just the distance…
Well, in this digital age, why not film the foot trimming taking place and stream it live to the Devon vets office where Matt and Elena could both watch the procedure take place and have discussions with the vet and farrier out in Spain to ensure the best possible treatment for the donkey? And so it was one afternoon Matt and Elena were in the office sat in front of a computer, watching a foot being trimmed, holding copies of the x-rays and conversing in rapid Spanish over a headset!
The link up and trimming was successful and was a great demonstration of all the Sanctuary’s core values:
- Compassion – wanting to give this donkey the best possible treatment.
- Collaboration – between the Spanish and UK teams.
- Creativity – thinking outside the box we found a solution to help this donkey as quickly as we could, teach the team in Spain and do it all without the cost of flights!
Our Veterinary Department is always on hand to give help or advice to vets anywhere in the world.