Harvey Carruthers travelled to India with Australian organisation Vets Beyond Borders and spent up to eight hours a day treating strays as part of an anti-rabies and animal health programme.
He travelled to the remote Sikkim region of the south Asian country, taking a supply of antibiotics and veterinary equipment with him, where he worked at up to 3,000 metres above sea level. He said: “I was looking for voluntary work that I could do which involved veterinary skills, and I really wanted to go to India.
“With most programmes if you are going you have to go for several weeks or months, there aren’t many that will take you for a fortnight.
Eventually I found a charity based in Australia, called Vets Beyond Borders. They are mainly for Australian or Kiwi vets and nurses, not many Brits go because they don’t really promote the charity here. The programmes they are involved in are trying to stop rabies.
There’s something like 50,000 children a year who die through being bitten by rabid dogs, so the whole purpose is to reduce rabies and, to a certain extent, to control the dog population.”
He added that he was now saving so he can return to do more work in the region.