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Hope for 'Hope,' the South African rhino attacked by poachers

Hope for 'Hope,' the South African rhino attacked by poachers

South Africa

The South African rhino ‘Hope’ which survived a horrific attack last year by poachers is gradually recovering after surviving 16 surgical operations.

After removing her front horn, the left part of her face bloodied before leaving her lame in her left leg.

“As its itchy she starts scratching. And its nearly two tons behind that scratching. So the challenge here is to try and get something on the wound and keep it covered for at least 4 -6 weeks so we can redress it. That is not happening currently so we need to come up with a different plan every time,“Gerhard Steennkamp, a veterinary surgeon said.

As its itchy she starts scratching. And its nearly two tons behind that scratching. So the challenge here is to try and get something on the wound and keep it covered for at least 4 -6 weeks so we can redress it.

A major surgery was done to reconstruct “Hope’s” face and a shield was fixed to protect her and more procedures are necessary for “Hope” to fully recover.

Hope the rhino, is being treated by a group called ‘saving the survivors.’

The main challenge has been finding alternative ways to keep her shield in place so that she will not be left vulnerable to infections.

“We don’t know which antibodies to give and which dosage of which pain killers to give. We don’t even know the normal blood parametres. We don’t know the basic anatomy which is a major problem because we are loosing 1200 or 1300 rhinos a year. And we expected to try and save them and to do surgery on them,” Johan Marias, a veterinary surgeon with Saving the Survivors said.

The medical attention on the animal has been partly funded by donations.

Saving the survivors has gained much experience as they get involved in treating more and more survivors with facial injuries.

AFP