History of AAU

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History of AAU

A dream to help street animals.

In 2002 our founding family established Udaipur's first and only shelter and hospital for ownerless animals.

As word spread, a few rescue requests a week became more than 100 calls each day. Tens of thousands of animals have been rescued and saved, and the community's compassion has blossomed into action.

From Seattle to Udaipur

In 1994 Animal Aid’s founders Erika, Jim and daughter Claire began travelling from their home in Seattle, USA, to India, where they fell in love with the country, and especially the small city of Udaipur, Rajasthan.

Their professions as consultants gave them flexibility, and loving Indian culture, they planned to gradually live in Udaipur. In 1999 they moved to a small village, started learning Hindi, and that's when they began to notice the often poor condition of street animals.

The first steps

When they realised there were no services for ownerless animals in Udaipur, they contacted animal organizations around the world, and began to learn what they could do to help. This is when their life work of learning how to rescue animals, hiring and training staff, and raising funds for medicine and food began.

In 2002 they hired a veterinarian and began training local villagers in animal care, rented a small piece of land and slowly started to rescue injured animals.

Word spreads throughout Udaipur

Within a few months, our 40 kennels and two small paddocks became filled with rescued dogs, donkeys and cows. With no village phones, reports of animal problems reached us by word of mouth. But with the arrival of cell phones and thanks to ads in the newspapers, leaflet drops in schools and community groups, rescue requests multiplied.

More than ever before, the lives of animals in Udaipur were being saved.

Animal Aid today!

Today, in Badi village, Udaipur, on 3 leased acres, our staff of 100 is joined by volunteers from around the world to care for 700 ever-changing animals in our hospital and shelter.

Our founding family lives on site and is involved in operations and management. Claire leads the management team of professionals in veterinary care and organizational administration.

Learn about our work today

"Let the animals be the teachers."

Our founding family shares the dreams and philosophy that guides Animal Aid Unlimited.

Make the future bright for animals.

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