With each elephant rescue, we have observed a disturbing pattern in captive elephants – their bodies are weakened due to improper nutrition, their delicate feet are filled with wounds, and they are socially isolated and psychologically depressed. Even after rehabilitation, these elephants remain completely dependent on humans for their day-to-day survival. A dedicated team of veterinarians and trained staff work round the clock to cater to the needs of our rescued elephants and to reassure them that they are in a safe place.

Slowly as an organisation, we have evolved in our understanding of physiological and psychological issues faced by elephants in captivity. Through this, we have stitched together important pieces for long-term elephant care by learning new veterinary techniques and keeping up with new developments.

Learn more about our plans to expand the centre »

In keeping with the organisation’s objectives to rescue and rehabilitate elephants from abuse and captivity and provide them with the best quality medical care available, Wildlife SOS constructed the country’s first treatment unit specially designed to treat injured, sick or geriatric elephants. The Treatment Unit at the Elephant Conservation and Care Centre in Mathura is equipped to test and diagnose elephants for a host of diseases and pathogens with an inbuilt path lab, deal with emergency situations with a hoist and support structure, and quarantine the elephant for required durations to avoid the spread of diseases. Regular veterinary checkups are enabled through the weighing scale and treatment pen, along with space to treat an elephant for longer durations if needed.

The treatment unit design accounts for space for the veterinary team to store medicine and critical equipment including a portable x-ray machine, foot care tools as well as a room for staff to stay overnight to observe and keep an eye on the elephants. To further spread information on the humane care provided to elephants in the treatment unit and the rescue centre, there is also an interpretation centre and an observation window for visiting veterinarians, biologists and elephant caretakers from around the world who can observe and learn about veterinary care for captive elephants.

We believe that this treatment unit will not only help us take better care of our resident elephants and the others that may come, but it will also help us expand our knowledge about veterinary and behavioural science of Asian elephants to share with other practitioners worldwide. We hope that through the dedicated treatments, we will be able to identify and develop a model for the management of Asian elephants in captivity across the world.


Treatment Unit at ECCC, Ghari Churmura, Farah, Uttar Pradesh 281122


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