Category: Blue Cross of India


By Padmasandhya Srikanth

It was the seventh and final visit by the Mobile Hospital (MoHo). Shero was back in the game as he caught the ball mid-air. Only a few weeks ago this had seemed impossible.

It all began when Shero set out to play with the young humans on a fine summer evening. The sun and her orange wings made way for the calm allure of the full moon. The birds serenaded their lovers with a sweet spring melody. Children spilled into the streets of Adambakkam, armed with cricket bats and makeshift cricket stumps. It was time for Shero to join them. He loved to run after the ball and fetch it. He was an integral part of the playing twelve!

As he galloped eagerly to the playground, he stopped, only for a moment, to admire a feathered friend settled on a tamarind tree. Before he even knew what had happened, he blacked out. A motor vehicle had hit him.

Shero was hurt, and he had a difficult few days. He crawled under a car where he felt safer.

Just when he was about to give up, he saw his favorite human, Varghese, drop to his knees and peer under the car. He was going to be saved!

In a few hours, Blue Cross of India’s spanking new Hospital-on-Wheels arrived. Dr. Silambarasan looked grim when he saw Shero’s leg. He was given several injections to combat an infection.

Mr. Ramachandran drove the Hospital-on-Wheels regularly to Adambakkam along with Dr. Silambarasan and Dr. Naveenkumar till Shero’s wounds healed completely! The Hospital-on-Wheels was donated to Blue Cross by the Austrian organization, Vier Pfoten, or Four Paws, who do outstanding rescue work in many countries. The MoHo, as it is called, is enabling Blue Cross to provide top-notch care to animals right where they are, without having to transport them back and forth to the Blue cross shelter, away from their neighborhoods. This makes a tremendous difference to the well-being of the dogs and other animals being treated.

Caring for Shero was a long recovery process, spanning over seven visits of the MoHo. Each time, Shero showed improvement. First the infection was curtailed. Then, the wounds healed. Slowly, he started using his leg again.

Today, Shero is happily a member of the playing twelve again! He is back in action. And just like so many other street dogs, he has learned to be extra aware of potential dangers. Safer now that he is extra cautious, he loves running and playing!

Street dogs develop uncanny abilities to navigate their surroundings safely and to live out their lives in freedom. There are many, many millions of street dogs in India. It has never been part of Indian culture to kill or to harm them.

While it can be a bit of a rough life, their life has many joys as well – including the freedom to run and play.

They are not adapted to living indoors – either in a home or in a shelter, and as long as they are spayed/neutered and given all their shots, they are well adapted to living their lives in the neighborhoods where they live. They can live on well into old age and enjoy their lives – among their friends and playmates, both animal and human.

The healing of Shero is a testimony to the number of lives the MoHo has helped save. Just two months since the inauguration of the mobile hospital, and we have been able to save so many like Shero!

Shero has barked the good word to his friends about the MoHo, which is here to serve them!

Photos: Velu TM

By Keerthana Nithyakumar

“Oh, my God! Is that Brook? I couldn’t recognize him. Look at his gorgeous fur!” one of the Blue Cross volunteers exclaimed while all heads turned to admire the transformation of Brook, the once mange-infected dog.

You could see the look of pure joy and satisfaction on the volunteers’ faces. Indeed, nothing matches the moment of witnessing the result of a job well done!

Flashback to a few weeks ago when the same volunteers met Brook and his friends for the first time, things were polar opposite. With patches of hair loss exposing his skin, he looked uncomfortable.

The volunteers jumped into action with an unspoken single-minded resolve. While one gently caught hold of the startled dog and comforted him, the other started bathing him with medicinal shampoos. This way, like clockwork, the purpose-driven volunteers started treating the mange-infected dogs, one at a time, with utmost gentleness and compassion.

While a few of the dogs were happy to bask in the attention and care of the volunteers, most of them, who seemed traumatized, came around in their own time. Pacified, bathed, nourished, and cared for, all they needed was time, the great healer, to make the real magic happen. As the days filled with diligent efforts and patience rolled by, the progress was so subtle that everyone was happily startled that day when Brook pounced on the gates, anticipating the arrival of volunteers to show off his sprouting fur, visibly blossoming into a new life inside out!

Sadly, mange is a skin disease common in street dogs and puppies, caused by malnutrition and the stress of street life. They all appear beyond hope, but as we have witnessed in the many miracle dog stories like Brook, even serious cases can be treated effectively.

This is not just wishful thinking but the firsthand experience of Blue Cross, India’s largest animal welfare organization, located in Chennai, in the south of India. And with the dedicated caregivers and diligent volunteers by their side, Blue Cross of India is working to create a better life for these fur angels, one Brook at a time!

Photo: Velu TM, Blue Cross of India

By Keerthana Nithyakumar

If you saw Cleo getting her chin scratched on a soft couch today, you’d never guess where her story began.

It was a starless night when Blue Cross of India first discovered her.

Her beady eyes surveyed the new surroundings. Alone under the night sky, tucked inside a wet cardboard box on the lonely road, she didn’t dare to stir, the thudding of her heart echoing in her ears. Was this really happening, or was her brain playing cruel tricks on her?

Minutes turned into hours without any sign of her beloved human coming to take her back – fear and confusion overpowered her.

Cleo left out a soft purr that sounded like a “Why?”

After what felt like infinite time, the sun’s soft rays filtered through the nearly bare branches, and she was startled to meet a pair of eyes that reflected her own surprise!

The flutter of hope took a U turn when she realized that the pair did not belong to her familiar person, and fear gripped her heart. But that pair of eyes stared back at her with something familiar, something she thought she’d lost forever, that she ached for – something that felt like love.

The human stepped near, and Cleo’s defense kicked in, but she was too exhausted and traumatized to escape the approaching hands. She let herself be carried out of the flimsy box. A pair of soothingly protective arms wrapped her trembling body covered with fleas. Cleo clung to them, wishing away the worst of her days.

And you know what? The wonderful days that followed Cleo’s abandonment proved that wishes do come true! Because she had just been rescued into the arms of Blue Cross. She was immediately treated and cared for, body and soul.

While one Blue Cross team was doing a splendid job of nourishing and showering her with all the love in the world, the other team had been appealing to the world to give Cleo her the forever loving and responsible home that she deserves.

After just a few days, a lovely human named Rebecca reached out to Blue Cross to adopt and take her to her loving home. Well, who could resist this adorable snowy bundle of curiosity and innocent fun?

Photo: Velu TM, Blue Cross of India