A team of German veterinarians visited Pakistan to provide dental treatments to the country’s four female elephants at Karachi Zoo and Safari Park, suffering from toothache and infection.
The team was invited after animal rights activists sued the animal facilities after a video went viral on social media showing cracks in the foot of one of the animals, Malika, who is housed at Karachi’s Safari Park.
The team comprising of Dr. Marina Ivanova, Dr. Frank Goritz, Dr. Thomas Hilderbrandt, and Dr. Amir Khalil was sent by the Global organization, Four Paws.CEO Four Paws Josef Pfabigan, elephant trainer Mathias Otto and his assistant Agnieszka are also accompanying the team. The team would carry out a thorough medical and dental examination of the elephants.
Madhubala undergoes root canal surgery
The 16-year-old elephant Madhubala underwent root canal surgery, performed under standing sedation technique, to help the African female elephant get rid of toothache and infection. This is the first time in the history of Pakistan that the sedation technique was used to treat an elephant.
The root canal procedure was performed using specially designed, large-sized excavators, drills, endodontic burs, and other dental instruments. The procedure involved removing the dead tissue and cleaning the root canal.
“We are very glad the operation is done today on both sides of the tooth root of the elephant Madhubala. It is a special procedure, which we did,” Dr. Amir Khalil, director of Four PAWs, told the media after the procedure was completed at Karachi Zoo.
“Their tusks were broken, and the tissue inside the wounds was inflamed and infected,” Dr. Khalil added.
He hoped that the treatment would give Madhubala a new lease on life as she would be relieved of the severe pain that she had suffered over the past few years. This would also allow her to eat normally.
16-year-old Noor Jehan would undergo root canal surgery on Thursday, Aug. 18
The visiting team also taught local vets how to conduct regular post-treatment flushing to prevent inflammation and sustain hygiene of the wounds.