Project information

Saving African Painted Dogs

To vaccinate domestic dogs in the villages surrounding Hwange National Park primarily against rabies and distemper. This will create a barrier to transmissible diseases that could decimate the already threatened painted dog population within the national park.

May 2018 - September 2018

Charity information: Wildlife Vets International

Wildlife Vets International logo
  • Need


    1) African painted dogs have a huge home range and often come into contact with domestic dogs. These dogs carry diseases which could potentially wipe out packs at a time and make significant changes to the overall populatin of African painted dogs.

    2) Snares are one of the painted dogs biggest threats. Partners Painted Dog Conservation often rescue dogs from snares and have to perform on the ground first aid. Severe cases are brought into the rehabilitation centre before being re-released.


    1) Provide veterinary advice and expertise to the Zimbabwean State Veterinary Department for vaccination and minor injuries clinics in partnership with Painted Dog Conservation (PDC). We vaccinate against canine distemper and rabies, which directly protects the human population. We offer a neutering service which is widely taken up. The clinics are part of a suite of services PDC offers the community under the banner of painted dogs.
    2) WVI provides training and equipment to the field teams.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    To create a barrier to protect the African Painted dogs in Hwange National Park from disease


    » In conjunction with government and non government organisations, we run vaccination, neutering and minor injuries clinics every 2-3 years

    The lack of disease (canine distemper and rabies) outbreak in the painted dogs. Consequences of an outbreak outweigh the currently known risk - e.g. distemper in 1990s

    Aim 2

    Train Painted Dog Conservation staff in wildlife medicine & provide equipment for clinic & research


    » increase in efficiency and recoverability of the painted dogs. Increase in research capacity.

    Increase in the number of snare injuries PDC can deal with rather than driving 7 hours to nearest vets, increase in research projects related to health and genetics.

  • Impact


    As part of a suite of services PDC offers the local community in the name of painted dogs, one long term success would be that the vaccination and small injuries clinics to grow in popularity and hopefully cover a greater area around the park.
    While the threat from disease is difficult to see,there are plenty of examples of the devastation it brings (Rinderpest). A success will be the lack of disease outbreaks and the recognition that wildlife medicine is core to successful conservation


    There are risks of creating a disease outbreak by using various types of vaccines. these are mitigated by not vaccinating the painted dogs, only the domestic dogs where masses of research has been done on how they react and the probability of them developing the disease (minimal).
    Another risk would be not vaccinating enough domestic dogs. This is mitigated by strategic planning by PDC and having the clinics as part of their suite of services offered to the local community.


    Reports are written after every batch of clinics that are run and distributed to donors. During the project, WVI will be putting information on Facebook, Twitter and their website, with blogs if the vets have time to write one! Donors are listed on all reports, press releases & project website page

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £17,120

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      Amount Heading Description
      £2,000 personell salaries for vets, drivers, clinic staff at the domestic dog clinics
      £4,500 vaccines Rabies and Canine Distemper Virus vaccine bought in country
      £4,020 antiparasitic treatment worm and flea treatments, donated by pharmaceutical companies
      £500 veterinary consumables everything from syringes, neuter kits, disinfectant, suture kits, cotton wool, antibiocs . Donated
      £1,500 Rehabilitation centre staff training, clinic and research equipment
      £2,600 international travel and admin flights, visas, travel costs, project management and promotion
      £2,000 development for time spent putting together the next phase of the Disease Surveillance Programme

    Current Funding / Pledges

    Source Amount
    Private individual £1,500 Guaranteed
  • Background


    Hwange National Park, Zimbabwe


    The African painted dog in Hwange National Park and also the local community in the vaccinity of the Painted Dog Conservation's project area. The community is very deprived in this area due to the social and political situation so anything help. the domestic dog clinics sit along side HIV clinics, education facilities in a bush camp and in local schools, public dustbins, road hazard signs, arts centre, selling snare art amongst other services

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    We are the only charity who provide only veterinary EXPERTISE and support to the conservation community. We were set up due to professional wildlife vets being asked for their expertise and being unable to give it the due attention endangered species need. As a charity we are able to access funds to pay vets (at a conservation rate) for their expertise, so it is delivered in a timely fashion.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Steve Philps

    Steve is an experienced wildlife vet and is the project leader. He is bringing together the clinics and the disease surveillance of wild carnivore.

    Steve Leonard

    a TV personality & renowned vet, particularly under field conditions, he brings enthusiasm & professionalism, particularly neutering dogs under trees

    Peter Blinston

    Project Manager at Painted Dog Conservation, Peter organises the logistics of 7 clinics in 5 days.

Family of African painted dogs

Family of African painted dogs