A farrier at work in India

The Brooke is an international animal welfare organisation dedicated to improving the lives of working horses, donkeys and mules in some of the world’s poorest communities.

Transport of Bricks

The equine owning community works solely for transporting bricks either by cart or by pack. This is a seasonal work where communities migrate from villages for work and stays there for 6-7 months away from home. However a few communities (non-migratory) work in nearby brick kiln on daily basis and stays in their villages. Brick-kiln season starts from November and ends in June. And for four months they sit idle or work as daily wages laborers.  Majority of the owner earn their income (90%) from the brick kiln work.

Transport of Pilgrims

The community working in pilgrimage site primarily use horses, mules & ponies in high hilly and cliffy terrains like Katra in Jammu (J&K), Gaurikund and Hemkund in Uttarakhnad for transporting pilgrims. This is a seasonal work (Gaurikund and Hemkund) which starts from April and ends in October. But in some places like Katra, the work continues throughout the year. During the season each equine earn roughly about Rs.500-1000/day and in offseason, they work assisting mostly household work.

Transport of goods in hills

In hilly state of  Himachal and Uttarkhand equines are engaged for transporting food, construction material and various other commodities for about 8- 10 months in a year except peak winter (Dec and Jan). In Lahaul and Spiti valley of Himachal Pradesh, few families use pack animals for transporting timber. Many equine owners  

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