THE HOWLER - Village de-sexing clinics a success

Over the past 2 weeks APS in conjunction with the Dog Management Unit (DMU) and Massey University in New Zealand have been conducting free dog desexings in villages around Apia. This is the 4th year that the highly successful program, organised by the DMU, has been run. Final year Veterinary Science students from Massey University are able to gain valuable experience in animal surgery and at the same time many animals are desexed, vaccinated and treated for parasites free of charge! Desexed animals are healthier, fight less and are less likely to wander; and of course there are no surprise puppies! 

“The program is an excellent opportunity for students to gain practical surgical experience in a fully supervised environment. This gives our students more confidence as surgeons and better prepares them for the work force. At the same time we are able to help manage the dog population of Samoa.” Said Massey University Small  Animal Surgery Resident and Team Leader, Malcolm Jack

“This trip has been the opportunity of a life time! It has helped enormously with my surgical skills while at the same time allowing me to see a totally new culture and way of life. I would recommend Samoa to anyone!” Said 5th year veterinary science student Jonathan Christian. 

Sincere thanks are extended to the program sponsors The Aggie Grey Group (for providing free accommodation for the student team) and The New Zealand Aid Program via the Local Government New Zealand Pacific Technical Assistance facility. 

The program will continue in August and September this year. If you are interested in hosting the program in your village please contact the Dog Management Unit. The next program will run for August 16-26 2016.


Parvo Virus is a serious disease that affects puppies and young dogs. It attacks the lining of the intestines causing vomiting and diarrhoea, and also attacks the immune system making the dogs very weak. The most common signs are extreme tiredness, vomiting, not eating and bloody diarrhoea. The disease is often fatal especially in young puppies; there is no direct treatment once a puppy is sick.

 However the disease can be prevented with quarantine and vaccination. From birth puppies should be kept in a small area and not allowed to wander –they catch this disease from the dirt. At 6 weeks they can have their first vaccination, and need a booster 1 month after this followed by another at 12 months of age. It is a vital part of being a good dog owner to get your best friend vaccinated against parvo virus- it gives them the best chance of growing to be strong healthy dogs! Vaccinations cost $25.00 and your puppy will get a health check from the vet at the same time. Please call the clinic on 22403 to book an appointment for vaccination. We also have a range of effective flea and tick treatments available. 

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