Every journey begins with a single step
In 2011, EARS ASIA led a successful international campaign to retire Sombo, a 51 year old female elephant, who was giving rides to tourists in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. Sombo was living a solitary life, she had painful abscesses and overgrown toenails from walking on the hot tarmac roads, and we feared she would collapse and ultimately die.
On Monday 30th January 2012, Louise Rogerson, founder of EARS ASIA, along with Sombo's family and their mahout, walked Sombo throughout the night when the roads were quiet, to her new temporary home on the outskirts of Phnom Penh. We worked closely with her family to provide an intensive 2 year medical program supervised by Chief Veterinarian Dr Paolo Martelli, DMV (liege), CertZooMed (RCVS). Paolo's conclusion stated that Sombo was painfully lame as a result of pododermatitis, osteitis, ostoelysis, and deep sepsis from walking on hard ground on damaged feet.
Sombo received medicated foot baths twice daily which reduced bacterial proliferation and limited further infection, slowly helping to heal her abscessed feet.
At the end of August 2014, Sombo's family reached out to EARS ASIA as they finally decided that their beloved elephant should spend her twilight years in a forest sanctuary, where she is now living her sunset years surrounded by peace and tranquility.
Our newsletter outlined her story:
A Letter of Congratulations on behalf of Wildlife Alliance
Letter of Congratulations - Sombo.pdf
On behalf of EARS ASIA, thank you to our amazing supporters for following Sombo's journey.
We could not have achieved this incredible result for this beautiful elephant without your unwavering support.