Have you ever asked yourself, how can one person make a difference to an endangered species? Well if you have, we have an answer for you! You can save a Painted Dog.
We recently went to Hwange National Park, Zimbabwe’s largest park, located only 100km from Victoria Falls where we visited the Painted Dog Conservation Project. Established in 1990, the organization tries in many ways to prevent the painted dogs from becoming extinct with its Education Programmes, Anti-Poaching Units, Rehabilitation Center and much more. One of their programs allows you to adopt a painted dog.
Besides the fact that you can give “your” pup a name, a romantic gesture for someone you care for or a family member, you also will receive the following in return:
• A personalized certificate with photo of your adopted pup.
• Frequent updates sharing stories and photos of your pup.
• Regular news from the Painted Dog Conservation project throughout the year.
• Two painted dog key rings.
If you’re looking for a unique present, then why not sponsor one of their pups for someone else as a gift?
Adopting a puppy aids in buying anti-snare reflective collars, funds the anti-poaching operations and funds the education work which helps protect Zimbabwe’s painted dogs. The costs of naming and adopting a painted dog pup is US$550.00
Fast Facts on Painted dogs:
• There are approximately 700 dogs in Zimbabwe, one of the few countries where they have a chance to survive with its large national parks that have little to no human population in them.
• Total population in Africa is 6600 dogs.
• They are nomadic animals and can traverse up to 50km in a single day. As a result, their territories can range between 400 and 1500 square kilometres. However, they only remain in one area when denning.
• They can trace their ancestry back to 40 million years ago.
• Every dog has a coat with a unique pattern making individuals easy to spot.
• To date, there are no recorded incidents in Africa of wild dogs attacking humans.
Why are Painted Dogs endangered?
• Poaching (collateral damage)
• Habitat loss
• Competition with larger predators like lions
• Encountering humans whose livelihoods rest largely on livestock and agriculture
Painted Dog Pack Life:
• Packs have a strict hierarchy, with an alpha breeding pair in charge of the group and the rest of the pack members are all subordinates
• Their hunting methods keep the pack strong, with an 80% success rate
• They mourn deceased pack members showing signs of emotional ties
• Pups take priority over everyone else in the pack and are given first choice from a kill
• If a dog is injured or elderly, the rest of the pack cares for and feeds them. For any other predator, this would be a death sentence
Be a Friend of the Painted Dog
Experience first-hand the reality of operating a conservation project in the African bush by taking part in the Painted Dog Conservation project today. Contact Ron van der A directly at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit their website to find out more here.