Local News & Events

Puerto Vallarta • Riviera Nayarit 

Victoria Animal Lover's Passion Inspires Documentary

Share
Times Colonist
go to original
December 28, 2014



Victoria filmmaker and animal advocate Erin Skillen gets a little love from Paco, a chihuahua terrier she rescued while filming the documentary Vets Without Borders in Mexico.

Erin Skillen had already witnessed the plight of endangered animals in foreign countries before she was profoundly moved by her encounter with a little black puppy on death’s door while vacationing in Cuba.

“It came down to looking into the eyes of a dog dying on the beach,” said Skillen, recalling her encounter in 2009 with the Cuban canine believed to have been hit by a car. It inspired her new documentary, Vets Without Borders.

...Skillen, 35, has already gathered most of the footage for her passion project featuring two teams of volunteer veterinarians and vet techs who spend their vacation time working at free mobile clinics in communities in Mexico and Guatemala, where there’s little or no veterinary care.

It focuses on the Mexi-Can Vet project, launched in 2010 by Dr. Malcolm Macartney, owner of Mackenzie Veterinary Services in Saanich, and Ottawa-based Veterinarians Without Borders.

Footage includes shots of volunteers nurturing a puppy in Mexico that had eaten poisoned fish. The dog’s owners gave her away because they couldn’t afford vet care.

While Mexi-Can’s priority is to provide spaying/neutering services and improve animal welfare, volunteers also bring some rescue dogs back to Canada for adoption.

In Jaltemba Bay, Mexico, Skillen, accompanied by cameraman Mike Wavrecan, rode in the back of a pickup truck while she was four months pregnant to document Mexi-Can spaying and neutering 200 street dogs in La Penita, near Puerto Vallarta.

She was also struck by a very young Mexican volunteer’s passion while watching a surgical procedure. Dog-loving children who volunteer at these clinics share health-care tips with their families.

“I pictured this little girl growing up to be a vet,” Skillen said. “To see the smiles on the faces of the local kids when they’d be given a new leash and collar for their dog was amazing.”

The documentary’s chief purpose, she says, is to encourage owners to spay and neuter their pets.

“There are so many problems in the world we can’t fix,” says Skillen.

“This is something that is fixing a problem. Year after year, fewer dogs are roaming the streets.”

Skillen is well aware some might question how worthwhile it is for Canadian veterinarians to be saving dogs in foreign countries.

“I feel a dog is a dog and they deserve the same compassion elsewhere in the world,” she said, emphasizing volunteers aren’t just improving the lives of dogs...

Read the entire story at Times Colonist

For more information or to make a donation, visit Vets Without Borders online.

Photograph by Adrian Lam, Times Colonist

  Learn more about Mexi-Can Vet Project


We invite you to add your charity or supporting organizations' news stories and coming events to PVAngels so we can share them with the world. Do it now!


Meet the Charities

Community Services

Environmental

Animals & Wildlife

Health Care

Youth & Family

Education

Culture & Recreation

Special Interests

How You Can Help

Use Your Powers for Good

Add Your Favorite Charity

Save a Life - Give Blood

Partners for Change

Meet the Partners

Become a Partner for Change

Resources

About PVAngels

Add Your Charity

Add Your News & Events

Locate Yourself on Our Maps

Join PVAngels Team

About Puerto Vallarta

Puerto Vallarta Local News

Local Event Calendar

Puerto Vallarta Videos

Puerto Vallarta Photos

Historic Puerto Vallarta

Local Area Maps

Important Phone Numbers

Craig's List in Puerto Vallarta

   Stay Connected

    Find PVAngels on Facebook Follow PVAngels on Twitter Sign up PVAngels Newsletter RSS Feeds on PVAngels



PVAngels.com is a unique blend of community awareness through the posting of local news and events, formal introductions to the charities and their needs, online fundraising, social networking and giving back. Ready to change the world? Join us.

FAIR USE NOTICE: This site contains copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance a more in-depth understanding of critical issues facing the world. We believe this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 USC Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. For more information click here. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes that go beyond 'fair use', you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.


2018 • m3 • this site is part of a charitable conspiracy