In April 2012 AMRRIC Animal Management Worker program manager Dr John Skuja travelled with the Barkly Shire Animal Management team to Alpurrurulum. Alpurrurulum is, almost 600kms drive from Tennant Creek, making it one of the most remote Indigenous communities in the Barkly Shire.
It had been several years since a vet had visited and there was plenty of demand for the services on offer, due to uncontrolled breeding by a large number of dogs. The AMRRIC funded Animal Managment Workers were busy collecting and preparing animals for surgery and kept veterinarian Malcom McGrath flat out desexing dogs for the three days that he was there. Remember that there was a day’s travelling over hundreds of kilometres of dirt roads on either side of the three days’ work. It is this combination of distance, limited capacity and increased costs associated with travel that makes it difficult to provide optimal animal management to communities as remote as Alpurruulam. Fortunately, there is another visit booked for June 2012 and hopefully there will be an extra vet and the AMWs can meet the challenge of keeping them busy.