A $10 Million Hospital In Dubai But Dedicated to Camels ONLY

In 2017, Dubai unveiled a $10 million hospital with pristine surgical rooms and cutting-edge medical technology, but these facilities are just for camels. The history of the Gulf Arab state continues to be significantly shaped by camels. Locals enjoy camel races and beauty pageants, and some camels are sold for millions of dollars once they are auctioned off.

“The Dubai Camel Hospital is the only advanced medical facility dedicated to treating camels in the whole world,” claims Ali Redha, director general of DCH, even though Qatar constructed a hospital and breeding centre in 2015.

“We found that we must care for camels not only by breeding and raising them but also by being able to medically treat them,” said Mohamed Al Bulooshi, the hospital’s director.

The hospital can treat up to 22 camels and is staffed by a group of international veterinarians. To get the camels moving again after their medical operations, the hospital also has a little racecourse. Its customised equipment was created by adapting equestrian medical equipment to support camel medical treatment. An ultrasound or X-ray costs $110, whereas surgery starts at $1,000.

The DCH has gained popularity since it opened in December 2017, bringing camels from as far away as the Northern Emirates and even Oman for treatment. It has been so popular that a 50% expansion is currently planned to keep up with demand.

Ali Redha, director general of DCH, said “We’ve grown considerably thanks to word spreading on the incredible medical advances that take place here and our results speak for themselves,”

The Scenes At The Camel Hospital In Dubai

The DCH estimates that there are approximately 300,000 camels in the nation, and camel-related industries have been thriving lately, including government-sponsored racing and beauty contests. Racing is currently one of the most popular sports in the region, particularly among Emiratis.

“Traditionally bedouins used camels for food, milk, and transport but now the population has increased dramatically because camels are being bred for racing,” states Redha, who has worked with Dubai ruler Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, who financed the institution, to maintain the country’s camel traditions.

Redha said “We look after everyone’s camels (including the royal family’s) and it’s usually because they are not performing well or they have been injured due to racing. Like any racehorse, you want them to be in their best health when they compete,”

Camel racing is a thriving industry. The famous Al Marmoom Heritage Festival winners will receive more than $40 million in prize money. The winner of the Al Dhafra Festival in Abu Dhabi will get more than $800,000.

Camels don’t come cheap they are extremely costly, especially the females, who are faster. The Crown Prince of Dubai, Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed, reportedly paid $2.7 million for one of the world’s most expensive female racing camels during a beauty pageant.

Due to the great value of a well-bred camel, owners have come to rely heavily on the Dubai Camel Hospital. The hospital employs 65 people, including a group of veterinarians and experts from other countries. The cutting-edge facility can treat 22 camels simultaneously. Doctors perform procedures with medical equipment from the US and Europe that has been particularly designed to operate on half-ton desert beasts.

The Dubai Camel Hospital offers surgery starting from $1000, and the cheapest service offered is ultrasounds, which cost about $110. It has a pharmacy where prescription medications are sold for the camels’ post-treatment needs. The hospital provides two operating rooms as well as a VIP area where owners can witness live surgery. The facility also has five-meter endoscopic equipment, which is only the third of its kind in the world and the first outside of the USA.

“It’s really exciting as we are constantly doing things that have never been done before,” says British surgeon Dr Claire Booth. “Similar to an athlete, camels get a lot of injuries through racing such as long bone fractures but also through interaction with each other. The bulls break each other’s jaws when they fight which is completely normal in the wild.”

Booth adds “We’ve also performed surgery on wounds, abscesses and even amputations. Once we sedate them, we attach their legs to a hoist and transport them upside down to the operating theatre,”.

Future Plans

The importance of rehabilitation is equal to that of surgery. Camels will be watched over 24 hours a day while receiving regular physiotherapy, which includes stretching exercises that include lifting camels with a hoist, as well as regular sprints on the clinic’s small racecourse.

The importance of rehabilitation is equal to that of surgery. Camels will be watched over 24 hours a day while receiving regular physiotherapy, which includes stretching exercises that include lifting camels with a hoist, as well as regular sprints on the clinic’s small racecourse.

Despite their intimidating size, Booth claims camels are ‘surprisingly easygoing’. “They are very gentle and calm. I’m used to working with horses who have more of an edge to them, but camels talk to you and tell you if they are not happy. They are great patients.”

Medical research and reproductive programmes are essential to DCH’s mission to safeguard the future of the camel population. Redha is in charge of veterinary research, which includes crucial post-mortems to determine the reason for death, and Dr Mansoor Ali Chaudhry is an expert in breeding and reproduction programs.

It’s groundbreaking work and we specifically select camels based on their origin and performance, and in some cases, IVF is also used on top performers,” said Dr Chaudhry. “Calves remain with their mothers for the first nine months before they go to respective stables to be trained for racing.”

Redha is planning to expand the hospital and he stated “We’re making pens to expand and we’ll build an outpatient clinic next, just like you would have at an ordinary hospital for follow-ups,” he says. “Camels will always be a part of our heritage and we must do everything to preserve their futures.”


Enquire Now
close slider