Cheetah Conservation Fund

To be the internationally recognized centre of excellence in the conservation of cheetahs and their ecosystems. CCF will work with all stakeholders to develop best practices in research, education, and land use to benefit all species, including people. CCF works to: create and manage long-term conservation strategies for the cheetah; develop and implement livestock management practices that eliminate the need for ranchers to kill cheetah; conduct education programs for locals; continue research in genetics, biology, species survival
Oct 16, 2012

New Litter of Puppies

Aleya and new puppy
Aleya and new puppy

Thank you for supporting the Cheetah Conservation Fund through Global Giving.  Global Giving is having a bonus day on October 17th.   Please consider giving a gift on this important day!

Your donation helps us do so much to help dogs save cats!

Aleya gave birth to six healthy puppies on 30 September 2012, right on her due date! All went well and both mother and puppies are doing just fine. These little ones will receive intensive care and training over the next

eight weeks until they are ready to be placed with local Namibian farmers and begin their lives as livestock guarding dogs. We are thrilled to have these new additions to our incredibly successful Livestock Guarding Dog Programme.

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Oct 16, 2012

Resident Cheetah Needs Surgery

Mendel
Mendel

Your donations help us do so much to preserve the health of our resident cheetahs!  GlobalGiving is having a bonus day on October 17th.  Please consider giving a gift to The Cheetah Conservation Fund Through GlobalGiving.

Last week Mendel, one of our male cheetahs, had a big operation. He had a foreign body removed from his stomach. 

The foreign body was first felt in his stomach at his annual exam, and again when he was anesthetized to have his VHF collar removed. We took an x-ray and could see bone and food material in his stomach. We were very concerned about how long the material had been in his stomach and worried that it might cause the stomach to rupture, which would make him very ill. Surgery was the only way that we could remove the foreign material. 

Axel, the vet, and I performed the surgery at the local vet in Otjiwarongo. The anesthesia was monitored by Rosie, our vet nurse, and Juliette, our head cheetah keeper, who assisted throughout. The surgery went well with no complications. When we removed the mass of bone and foreign material from the stomach we noticed that part of the stomach (the pylorus) was thickened, which meant that there was only a very small opening for food to enter the intestines. It was this reduction in size that was causing food and bone to get stuck in the stomach. We performed a procedure called a pylorotomy, which widens the pylorus to allow food to pass through properly. 

Post surgery Mendel has done very well.  He had to spend the first few days eating only lean mince (ground beef) and now is eating cut up meat.  He is in a smaller camp with one of his brothers Darwin to keep him company.  He is looking forward to being able to eat meat off a bone like he normally does and to getting back to his normal big 5-hectare camp with his other brothers!

Amelia Zakiewicz
CCF Veterinarian
An x-Ray showing the mass in Mendel
An x-Ray showing the mass in Mendel's stomach
Vet nurse Rosie preps Mendel for surgery
Vet nurse Rosie preps Mendel for surgery

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Sep 11, 2012

Livestock Guarding Dog Programme Success

Our Friend Shades
Our Friend Shades

Our Livestock Guarding Dog Programme is so successful in part because of our thorough concern and assistance for the dogs throughout their lifespan, and in recent months, we’ve seen that demonstrated clearly.

Our first litter of Kangals has been placed. Placement with a farmer happens when a puppy is eight weeks old. The young dog stays with younger livestock for the first few weeks. A three months, the dog will go out with the herder and the livestock to begin habituating it to the behaviour of the livestock and wild animals. Farmers must participate in training programmes on how to work with the dogs and make them effective livestock guarding dogs. A well-trained, well-cared-for Anatolian shepherd or Kangal is an imposing barrier against the predation of its herd.

Over the past few months, our LSGD team, Gebhardt Nikanor and Anja Bradley, has been visiting CCF dogs in the Otavi, Tsumeb, and Kamanjab districts near CCF. During these regular visits we talk to the farmers and herders about the dog, and have them answer questionnaires about the dogs’ performance and health. We also apply routine vaccinations and provide medical supplies to help ensure that the dogs’ health is a priority.

Occasionally, we find dogs that for various reasons, are in poor health or exhibiting poor performance. These dogs are removed from that specific farm, evaluated, and placed on another farm if appropriate. When a dog is unable to continue working, a home is found for the dog as a companion animal. When our own CCF dogs are retired, they live out the rest of their lives here at CCF as a valued member of our community.

We are sad because this month we lost Shades, an Anatolian shepherd who had been protecting

CCF’s own kraal of goats for over 12 years.  Shades had been retired, but still lived in the kraal–such was his bond with his former charges. His health deteriorated rapidly and as he was in great distress, Shades was euthanised. We all miss him terribly.

 But, as they say, the circle of life continues, and on Friday, 10 August, one of CCF’s Kangal dogs, Feliz, gave birth to six puppies, three male and three female. Sadly one of the males was stillborn, but the remaining five will become part of our growing and successful LSGD programme!

CCF
CCF's Kangal Feliz and her puppies with CCF staff

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