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
Jun 13, 2012

Dental Exams Help Cheetahs Eat

Cheetah at Dentist 1
Cheetah at Dentist 1

Donate today, and tell your friends!  Today, June 13th, is a Globalgiving bonus day! Make a gift to CCF through Globalgiving today, and CCF will receive a 50% match!

On May 23rd, two of our older captive cheetahs went to Otjiwarongo to see a human dentist, Dr. Dennis Profitt.  We are very fortunate to have the generous and gracious Dr. Profitt available to perform dental work on all our cheetahs with dental issues in order to help keep their teeth as healthy as possible. 

 

The two most recent treatments were two extractions and a root canal for Rosy, and two extractions for Misty.  Most often when a tooth is broken or damaged, he will try to preserve the tooth by performing a root canal.  However, when advanced periodontal disease develops, which can be age-related or due to impaction of bone or foreign material between the gums and the teeth, the teeth will sometimes need to be extracted due to secondary infection and periodontal bone loss.   

 

Fortunately there are plenty of teeth in the mouth, and despite having a few extractions these two cheetah females will go on being able to eat with no long-term problems.  In fact, removing and treating the infected teeth will reduce oral pain and inflammation and make them much more comfortable in the long run.  And they will still have pretty smiles!  Thank you Dr. Profitt for your on-going generosity and care of CCF’s cheetahs.

Cheetah at Dentist 2
Cheetah at Dentist 2

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Jun 13, 2012

Dogs Protecting Goats to Save Cheetahs

Boer Goat
Boer Goat
Donate today, and tell your friends!  Today, June 13th, is a Globalgiving bonus day! Make a gift to CCF through Globalgiving today, and CCF will receive a 50% match!
The newest life at CCF does not purr and lick, nor does it bark or scratch.  These week-old creatures have disproportionately large ears, gangly and unsteady limbs, vast orb-like eyes, and tiny, pink cloven hooves.  When they aren’t sleeping or drinking milk from their protective mothers, they are gamboling and capering around their pen, attempting to butt heads or jump onto higher surfaces, and – spoiler alert – making the most heart-melting bahh-ing sounds.  CCF is happy to announce the birth of six indigenous Boer goat kids!
The six kids (5 females and 1 male) were born to three healthy Boer does.  There were no complications during any of the births and all mothers instinctively began to clean, feed, and examine their kids.  The kids all have white bodies and either milk or dark chocolate colored heads.  They are all spry and inquisitive, exploring and frolicking until they collapse into a pile and sleep.     
Though birth in the kraal is met with less fanfare than most cheetah news, it is in fact an illustration of what makes the Cheetah Conservation Fund an internationally recognized centre of excellence: CCF is committed to developing the best practices in education, land use and conservation to benefit all species, including humans.  CCF is dedicated to teaching and working with farmers harmoniously, as well as leading by example.  The livestock farm at CCF’s headquarters Namibia is a model farm used to exhibit techniques and practices by which livestock and wildlife can be properly managed, eliminating the need for farmers and ranchers to kill wild cheetah.  The kraal at CCF is currently home to Boer goats, Damara sheep, mixed-breeds of dairy goat, and the Anatolian shepherds and Kangal dogs who guard the flock both inside the kraal and out in the field. 

Boer goats were developed in South Africa in the early 1900’s for meat production and were therefore the logical choice of breed for this model Namibian farm.  CCF’s model farm exemplifies the predator-friendly livestock management techniques of establishing calving seasons, using calving kraals, having herders, and using dogs as livestock guardians, to name a few.  The success of the model farm demonstrates that wild cheetah can continue to live on Namibian farmland without hindering the farmers’ way of life or harming their livelihood.  CCF is encouraged that there is now far greater awareness of the cheetah's role in the ecosystem, and an increasing number of farmers adopt predator-friendly livestock management practices and fewer cheetahs are being killed.  While these new lives have started without ceremony or drama, as is the natural way, their healthy birth and their symbolic role in the Cheetah Conservation Fund is concomitantly a celebration of the prosperous future of the wild cheetah.

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May 11, 2012

Honor Your Mother and Kiri with a Gift Through Global Giving

Kangal puppy playing
Kangal puppy playing
You might remember that Kiri is a Kangal that gave birth to eight puppies on 31 January. She was bred to CCF’s Kangal Firat, who was kindly donated to us by French breeder Bonnie Blue Flag.
I met Kiri’s eight puppies during my visit to CCF a couple of weeks ago. I feel lucky to have met them because they were just about to be placed within a few days of my departure! They are beautiful, very healthy, and definitely a handful!!!
In late March, the puppies underwent their routine sterilization surgeries.  Only some of the puppies in the litter were sterilized since a few will go on to be future breeding animals for CCF’s livestock guarding dog program.  Our vet Gaby explained the procedure to me. “The puppies first received a full physical exam to ensure they are healthy enough for surgery.  Then they were anaesthetized, given oxygen and anaesthetic gas via an endotracheal tube, and attached to anaesthesia monitoring equipment like a temperature probe, an ECG, a pulse oximeter, and a blood pressure monitor, just like in a human hospital!  The puppies also have an IV catheter placed and receive IV fluids to keep them well hydrated during the surgery.  A microchip transponder is inserted under their skin for future identification, and blood samples are taken for genetic analysis and general health evaluation.”  All the procedures went well, and the puppies were back in the kraal with their mom in no time.
As Kiri does not belong to CCF, half of her litter went to her owners, who took two of the puppies to their farm and placed two with friends as working dogs.  Of the four CCF puppies from the litter, two were placed as working dogs, while a male and a female will be breeding dogs because their genetics are quite valuable. 
We wish all these puppies a happy and healthy life saving cheetahs!
Kangal puppy placed
Kangal puppy placed

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