Foot and Mouth disease, opportunistic tigers and crop raiding elephants are among the biggest nightmares for farmers in many parts of rural India. Poverty, isolation, illiteracy and some faith healing practices are also making a difficult situation even harder. An English vet is working with village farmers in central India to help them take the best possible care of their livestock, especially cattle which are vital for farmwork and milk - not meat in this predominantly Hindu country. Professor Andy Hopker is a Lecturer in Farm Animal Practice at the The Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies in Midlothian in Scotland.
For the past few years he's come to the tourist town of Kanha as a guest of the Indian wildlife protection NGO The Corbett Foundation.RNZ's Lynn Freeman went to a village hall in Kanha with Andy and a translator, to meet the farmers.