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International Animal Rescue Saving animals from suffering around the world

IAR helps save lions from drowning in floods in India

Lioness awaiting rescueWe have provided emergency funds to save five lions from drowning in floods in India. IAR has sent £3000 in response to a call for help from Indian charity Wildlife SOS (WSOS) which is working to rescue the lions from a small zoo in the city of Sangli, in the southern state of Maharashtra.

Sangli was badly hit by flood waters from the Krishna River and by waters released from the Koyna Dam. The seven-strong rescue team could only reach the zoo by paddling boats through the flooded streets. On arrival they found that most of the zoo was already under ten feet of water and the two lions and three lionesses were in severe danger of drowning.

Although reported to be ’in bad shape’, the lions are now out of immediate danger. The next step is to relocate them to a rescue centre as soon as possible. Their rescuers are working to repair the zoo’s three travel crates and build two more so that, when the water levels drop, trucks can reach the zoo and transport the lions to their new quarters. In the meantime, WSOS is obtaining the necessary permits and clearances to move the animals from the Indian Central Zoo Authority. The army has now also arrived in Sangli to help with people cope with the after-effects of the disaster.

Lion now in safe area and out of dangerAlan Knight, CEO of International Animal Rescue, says: "We had no hesitation in helping Wildlife SOS bring emergency aid to areas hit by the floods. The vets are treating injuries, feeding abandoned animals and vaccinating them against disease. Sadly, in such situations cattle and livestock are prized and protected, but companion animals are often likely to suffer. In the wake of this kind of natural disaster people are terrified of contracting diseases, and rabies scares are easily started by the sight of a frightened or sick dog. So as well as providing hands-on aid, the rescue teams are working to educate survivors and prevent unnecessary panic breaking out."

International Animal Rescue is awaiting further bulletins from Kartick Satyanarayan of WSOS on the progress of the rescue of the five lions.