1. How much does it cost to rescue an animal from Afghanistan
An approximate figure for the rescue of a dog is between $3500 and $4500 (sometimes more if it is an extra-large dog), but it all depends on currency exchange rates.
A cat costs between $1800 and $2500
2. Why is it so expensive?
All of the animals we transport from Afghanistan travel registered as ‘cargo’ on the aircraft and a charged as such by the airlines. We cannot escort animals personally due to the continued visa problems we would encounter, plus fuel surcharges and taxes at the time of booking also play a part.
Costs by the airlines are determined on the dimensions of the crates the animals travel in and an increase from a 102cm crate to a 122cm crate can result in a price increase of up to a third again!
We often also have to pay for the transportation by road for animals to be brought to the safety of the shelter. We also have to take the cost of crates, (which includes getting them into Afghanistan in the first place), vaccinations, neutering, micro-chipping and feeding whilst at the shelter. And don’t forget our Afghan staff need their wages paying too!
3. How long does a rescue take?
From the time an animal arrives at the Nowzad shelter they must spend a minimum of 30 days with us. This is so that we can microchip them and meet the legal requirements of imports into the USA as well as many other countries ensuring that the animals undergo a quarantine period at the shelter. We always make sure an animal is 100% healthy before travel
4. What happens when an animal arrives at the shelter?
Upon arrival every animal receives a thorough health check by one of our 3 Vets. All soldier/contractor rescue animals are micro-chipped on arrival and receive a rabies vaccination as well as the first of a course of shots to prevent other canine/feline diseases.
5. What is Nowzad’s vaccination protocol?
Since opening the Nowzad shelter in 2010 every animal we receive into the shelter will receive the following treatment:
1. Rabies vaccination
2. DHPPI vaccination x 3 at 2 week intervals– (Canine)
3. Blood test for Rabies antibodies 30 days after rabies vaccination if an animal is traveling to the UK or any other European Country that requires it.
4. FORCAT/TRICAT vaccination x 2 at 2 week intervals (Feline)
5. Deworming – On arrival
6. Flea and tick treatment – Monthly during the summer months, bi monthly in winter months
8. Spay/Neuter unless there is a valid medical reason why it cannot be done prior to departure.
9. Any other medical treatment that is required.
Parvo, Distemper, Rabies, Feline Distemper, Feline Leukemia and a whole host of other diseases are prevalent in Afghanistan and we pride ourselves that since opening the shelter in Sept 2010 we have not lost any soldier/contractor rescue to any of these diseases. We believe this is due to the strict quarantine each animal is placed in on arrival and the vaccination protocols we follow.
6. Are any of the Nowzad animals available for adoption?
From time to time we will receive an animal into the Nowzad shelter that has been cared for by a soldier or a contractor who cannot offer them a permanent home. In cases like this we may look for potential placements for them in the USA, UK or Canada.
We also have introduced a successful Afghan adoption program as part of our campaign to educate the local Kabul population about animals.
7. What are the animals fed on when at the shelter?
The dogs get fed on a diet of ‘soup’ mix that we formulated ourselves and we make it from a mix of meat stock from bones, rice, naan bread, potatoes, carrots and other vegetables, fresh meat, lentils and chick peas.
We also add canned and dry dog food to the dog soup when we can afford to cat/dog food is very expensive in Afghanistan but it is readily available.
Our Nowzad shelter cats are fed on a diet of dry cat food as well as receiving canned food a couple of times a week.
8. How do we maintain a disease free shelter environment in Afghanistan?
Aside from our vaccination protocols all animals that come into the Nowzad shelter are placed into one of the single kennels we have in our quarantine section for 2 weeks. Most diseases will show within 2 weeks of arrival.
We also employ 3 kennel staff to clean the kennels twice daily and wash them down with disinfectant. If a sick animal is brought into us then extra cleaning/bleaching is undertaken.
Many good quality brands of disinfectant and bleach are available in Afghanistan and the use of these products is paramount to us remaining disease free.
Nowzad has dealt with many sick street animals since 2010 and to date we have ensured containment of the diseases by following protocols.