The Painted Dog (Wild Dog) Project

In 2011 Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife approached the Foundation with an urgent plea for assistance. The previous year 6 female painted dogs had escaped from Hluhluwe Imfolozi Park seeking new territories. They were recaptured and placed in a ‘boma’ in neighboring Mkuze Park, an area which hadn’t heard the excited yip of painted dogs for over 100 years.

As fate would have it, a local privately owned wildlife preserve had an excess of 7 male dogs and offered them to KZN Parks. They were readily accepted and placed in the boma along with the females, hoping they would bond. 8 months later this had been achieved and it was critical to release the bonded pack into the park. However this could not take place without leading members of the pack had been given monitoring collars to ensure their safety. The plea was to order and pay for the new collars and transmitter equipment.

The Foundation readily accepted the challenge as our first ever project. 6 collars were purchased as was monitoring equipment and veterinary expertise. On a cold winters morning 6 of the dominant dogs were sedated, a barrage of tests performed and their collars placed. A week later they were released into the wild.

The pack continues to flourish and has multiplied to an extent that some excess numbers have been relocated to other parks in order to boost the numbers and gene pool of other areas.