Veterinarian Dr Zainal Zahari Zainuddin says at the Borneo Rhino Sanctuary, they prioritise preventive measures against illnesses or infections in the rhinos.
“We weigh the rhinos every two weeks as their weight is an indicator of their health, and if they are eating well. Every month, samples of their poop, urine, blood, soil, water, food and the ground, are tested for hazardous bacteria and death-causing pathogens like salmonella, melioidosis, klebsiella or tuberculosis.
“When they go foraging at the fenced forested paddock, they sometimes sustain wounds on their feet, and we have to wash them with antiseptic. They will be out the whole night and return home only the next morning.
“Usually, they spend up to 19 hours a day in the paddock, which is really important for them to exhibit their behaviour as they would in the wild, and provides them with some form of needed enrichment.”
For Iman, treatment is given whenever there is a problem since there is nothing much Dr Zainal can do about her tumours. While there is no more blood oozing out of her, Iman still secretes mucus time and again, which he suspects is from her vagina or the uterus. Ultrasound tests are conducted on her every two to three days.
The five keepers at the sanctuary collect about 200kg of plants from the forests or plantations for the rhinos’ consumption.