There are thousands of dogs living on the streets in Nepal. These dogs suffer from neglect, starvation, injuries and disease. They also pose a health threat to people - every year, around 200 Nepali people die of rabies and 16,000 are treated for dog bites. In an effort to control the street dog population, city governments poison large numbers of street dogs each year. Not only is this is a horrific death for the dogs, it has been proven to be ineffective at lowering the overall numbers. Dog populations normally return to their original size within the year - since killing the dogs does not stop the remaining dogs from breeding.
Bhaktapur, located about 20 km east of Kathmandu in the Kathmandu Valley, is home to at least 2,000 stray dogs. Many people were very concerned about the dogs around Bhaktapur but had no way of helping them. Our partner began their work to provide an alternative to the government’s policy of culling dogs and ignoring the critically sick and injured animals. They now provide a very important, much needed service to the people and animals of Bhaktapur. This is a professional, non-governmental organization involved in welfare, well-being, safety and protection of animals that are a crucial part of our society. It was established by a group of professional veterinary doctors and animal lovers intent on helping stray dogs suffering in their community. With the help of volunteers like you, this organization rescues street dogs, treats and vaccinates the dogs, and controls the population through a sterilization program. They also focus on educating the community on the importance of keeping street dogs healthy and promoting rabies awareness.
Volunteers are involved in all aspects of the program. Exact volunteer duties will depend on your background, interests, and academic and clinical training. This will be discussed with you on arrival, and your schedule and duties will be customized to meet your skills and expectations. You do not need veterinary experience to volunteer. Volunteers help with feeding the dogs, cleaning, grooming, and bathing the dogs at the shelter, exercising and walking the dogs and assisting the team in other activities. Volunteers with veterinary training will have the opportunity to assist in the clinic, including helping with case management, diagnostics and surgeries as appropriate.
Volunteers have one day off per week. You can choose your day off between Sunday to Friday. Everyone works on Saturday, one of the busiest days. Shifts are from 9:00 am – 6:00 pm, with a 2 hour break for lunch.
You will either be staying in a lodge (small hotel) or you will be living with a local family in a home stay. The lodge is located right in the heart of Bhaktapur in a main square. Volunteers have their own room at the lodge, which is modest but clean and tasteful and most rooms have balconies. All of our home stay families are closely associated with the rescue centre and are an important part of the team. We believe home stays are not only safe, but offer you an amazing way to connect with the community. The lodge and the home stay are within easy walking distance of the rescue centre and local tourist spots. All meals are provided.
Do you have questions about safety? We have answers right here!
Airport pick up and drop off (at the closest airport), accommodation, meals, on-site training, donation to Placement Partner, AEI Travel Manual, any extras from placement, emergency support while at placement, carbon credits to offset 3 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions, premium Individual Travel Insurance (up to $500, 000 USD in emergency medical coverage), travel discounts (through automatic membership to a volunteer only travel discount program), 24/7 travel and emergency assistance, enrolment with the Global Travel Academy to earn a certificate in International Volunteering. This 3-hour online course is curated by travel professionals and is designed to help you get the most out of your adventure.
Flights, entry visa costs, international and domestic airport taxes, immunizations and medications. Note: The rabies vaccine is required for this Experience. Please note that the average cost of pre-exposure rabies vaccination is $600- $1000 in North America.
What is Serious
The dog rescue program is run out of a local veterinary clinic, allowing the project veterinarians to offer a high level of medical care. The team works hard to treat as many sick and injured dogs as possible. Without proper nutrition or a good home street dogs are susceptible to illnesses, and a large number of the animals have mange, ticks and other diseases. Many injured dogs are also brought to his clinic for emergency treatment and care. This is a tremendous improvement, for in the past these injured dogs were ignored and left to die in the streets. All dogs brought to the centre are neutered/spayed and vaccinated and then tagged so they can be easily identified once they are released. Adoption is becoming more common in Nepal, and efforts are made to find homes for the dogs when possible. Community education programs are improving public perception of street dogs, and making a real difference to the lives of these animals. With your help, the team can continue to offer these services and make Bhaktapur a cruelty-free region for dogs living on the streets.
What is Fun
Your visit to Nepal will be an experience you will never forget. Nepal is a beautiful country, offering breathtaking scenery, countless sacred sites and a rich culture. The city of Bhaktapur is known as 'Nepal's Cultural Gem' and this is where you will be staying. Bhaktapur is one of the three royal cities in the Kathmandu Valley and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The city is filled with monuments, palaces and temples with elaborate carvings, gilded roofs, and open courtyards. You will have many opportunities to explore the area and see Nepali life unfold around you. Staying right in the community - either in the lodge or at a home stay, is an amazing way to feel like part of the family from day one and to experience authentic Nepal.
At the clinic you will work side by side with the dog rescue team and the other international volunteers. You will soon discover that we have so much in common, all sharing a passion for helping street dogs and making their lives better. There is nothing more rewarding than being able to provide for an animal in need and to make a difference for that dog. Join our team in Nepal for a life changing adventure!
Dates and Details
This is an ongoing program with operations every day of the year. There are no specific start or end dates. We work with you and your schedule so you can serve this community and help animals when you are available.
Are you thinking of fundraising for a portion, or all your fees? Many of our clients have been very successful with their fundraising efforts. To learn more about their successful fundraising projects and see how you can fund raise for your experience, please visit our fundraising page!