Tag Archives: wild dog snare removal

De-snaring another wild dog (warning – gruesome photos)

Hi Folks,

A couple of days ago Rueben reported seeing a pack of wild dogs with two injured pack members.  One had a snare around his neck and one – sadly – had completely lost a leg.  I went out immediately to take a look and see if there was anything I could do.  Unfortunately the one who had lost a leg is beyond my help.  It seems he was caught in a snare and chewed his own leg off to get out…. Yes, you did read that correctly.  My immediate reaction of disbelief when I saw it was swiftly followed by anger at the immense cruelty of snaring.  This only increased when I managed to get a look at the dog with the snare around his neck…

I tried to dart him, but could not get a shot at him that day, and in any case it was getting late, so the following day, Rueben found the pack again early (thank goodness for the collar) and we spent the best part of the day trying to get close enough to get a dart in.  Unfortunately when dogs have been injured, they often become, understandably, very wary of humans, and they kept a long way out of range.  We tried motorbike, foot and vehicle and eventually I managed to get a dart in him when they stopped at a water point to drink.

The wound was even more terrible than it had seemed. The poor dog’s neck was almost half cut off….

I called for some help and by some miracle had sufficient phone signal to get a message through to a vet to ask for advice.  We removed the snare, cleaned up the wound and did what we could.

Luckily, the whole procedure went extremely well.  The dog slept soundly throughout and only started to come around once we had finished everything.  (The brown in the photo below is the betadine solution with which we cleaned the wound).

After an injection of the reversal drug, he made an extremely good recovery and soon joined his pack again.  I hope he will make it – he’s only a 10 month old pup, and deserves more of a chance than that!  Fortunately wild dogs are extremely resilient and I have seen dogs with similar wounds recover fine, so his chances are not too bad.  I will let you know how he does.

Back soon,



Videos of wild dog snare removal

Hi folks,

Have a look at these short video clips of the wild dog snare removal:



We located the pack today, and I’m chuffed to be able to report that Hobbit, the de-snared dog, is doing well.  In fact all the pack is, and there are still 11 adults and 10 pups which is great.

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Snare removal from African wild dog

Hi folks,

As I mentioned in the update on the Batanai pack, when we last saw this pack, we noticed that Hobbit, one of the collared males in the pack, had a very nasty snare wound around his neck.

Hobbit showing bad snare wound under the collar

We were desperate to get it off him, and of course remove the collar which must have been rubbing horribly, but we just could not get a darting opportunity.  We spent several days trying to get close enough to him in the car without any luck, and eventually tried a new tactic…. Darting from the back of the motorbike!

getting ready to go

That plan was all good and well until we took off at speed through the thorn bushes!


But then the focus was on getting close to the dog and getting a dart in, which we succeeded in doing.  Unfortunately he didn’t go down properly (badly injured animals often don’t) so after a combination of ambushes from the middle of a thorn bush (?!) and sneaking up on him behind a tree I managed to get a second dart in and he went down well.

It was such a relief after trying for so long, to be able to finally get that snare off.  It was a tight copper-wire snare.  A very nasty wound, which has cut deep into his neck but thankfully not through the windpipe.  Here is a picture of the injury after treatment:

Once the snare had been removed

I will post a video of the operation soon.

Please remember you can help us to help these awesome animals through a donation to the project through this website.  Just click on the DONATE button on the right hand side of this page. Thank you

Back soon,