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Study sheds light on mutilation of working donkeys
Researchers said the data can be used to create future educational interventions to reduce mutilation practices.(Stock photo)
Mutilation accounted for 62 per cent of all wounds in study population 

Urgent outreach work is needed to tackle the deliberate mutilation of working donkeys in India, scientists have said.

A new study published in Vet Record suggests mutilation by owners - including nose splitting, ear splitting and branding - were the most common skin wound, accounting for more than 62 per cent of all wounds.

Researchers assessed the health and welfare of 582 working donkeys from several communities that were part of a welfare initiative run by the Worldwide Veterinary Service in Tamil Nadu, India. They used data collected using a smartphone app between October 2016 and July 2017.

Just under 300 wounds were found in 227 donkeys, representing 39 per cent of the population.

Poorly fitting harnesses and hobbles were another common cause of injury.

Researchers said the data can be used to create future educational interventions to reduce mutilation practices. Outreach initiatives are urgently needed to improve donkey welfare in these regions.

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Nominations open for Blue Cross Medal 2019

News Story 1
 Animal lovers are being urged to nominate their pet heroes for the Blue Cross Medal 2019.

Celebrating inspirational pets for almost 80 years, the Award is open to pets that have done something brave, life-changing partnerships, assistance animals and serving or working animals.

To find out more about the awards and to nominate a pet, visit The closing date for entries is 15 February 2019.  

Click here for more...
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Northampton graduate wins industry award

A graphic communications graduate from the University of Northampton has won an industry award for her campaign to persuade people to choose a rescue dog over a puppy.

Taylar Wong received a YCN Student Award for her concept, which likened a rescue dogs stay at the Dogs Trust to a time at University. Injecting some fun into the adoption process, Taylor produced images of cute dogs wearing mortarboards for use on social media and physical advertising.