Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Soon: A Once A Month Pill For Dogs And Cats

Credit: iStockphoto/Mitja Mladkovic


Scientists at the Merck Research Laboratories have finally come up with a once-a-month pill for dogs and cats. No, it's not for birth control; it's for fleas and ticks! And wait until you read about the other big benefit of the pill....

Controlling fleas and ticks has been the bane of pet owners for centuries. You would think that by now infestations on poor cats and dogs, not to mention on humans, would be a thing of the past. But despite all the collars, powders, sprays, and house bombs that abound for flea and tick protection, we barely manage to contain the buggers.

At the Merck Research Lab, Peter Meinke and his colleagues have developed a pill that is 100 percent effective in protecting cats and dogs against fleas and ticks for a full month. And the other benefit of the pill is that there are no toxic side effects of the pill!

Hopefully, there is not an awful smell following them wherever they go for a few weeks either!

The scientists found the critical ingredient in the pill from a fungus that they said, "has the potential of ushering in a new era in the treatment of ecoparasitic [ticks and fleas, for example] infestations in companion animals." Maybe the same fungus might later be used to control head lice?

There is no word yet on when the pill will be available, but I'll let you know if I sniff out any news on the subject!

Meinke et al. Discovery of the Development Candidate N-tert-Butyl Nodulisporamide: A Safe and Efficacious Once Monthly Oral Agent for the Control of Fleas and Ticks on Companion Animals. Journal of Medicinal Chemistry, 2009; 52 (11): 3505 DOI: 10.1021/jm801334v, via Science Daily

That's the buzz for today!

Monday, June 29, 2009

Dog's hind leg chopped off


Dog's hind leg chopped off

Graphic pictures of a dog with its hind leg severed have been posted on citizen journalism website, STOMP.

The mongrel, named Kiwi, is possibly a victim of animal abuse. It was rescued by STOMPer Wendy, with its hind paw severed and its leg stripped of flesh and skin, leaving its bone clearly exposed.

Wendy said: "A couple of stray dogs have been rescued recently with unimaginable injuries.

"You may feel uncomfortable looking at them, but this is what really happened to our fellow local dogs in Singapore.

"Being strays are never easy, it is even worse if there are such losers out there, targeting at these helpless animals.

"We call this girl Kiwi.

"No one could imagine the ordeal this helpless girl has to go through."

Ms Deidre Moss of the Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA), told The Straits Times that its vet had looked at the pictures, but could not ascertain the cause of the dog's injury.

Ms Moss said it could have been a fracture due to a road accident. Other possible causes could be abuse.


"Now we just hope that Kiwi can survive this hell."

Friendship isn't about who you have known the longest...

Friendship isn't about who you have known the longest.

....but about who came and never left your side.













"IF YOU RESCUE ME" - Hollywood Kitty

Cat feeders, clear up after kitty has eaten

The Electric New Paper :
Cat feeders, clear up after kitty has eaten
28 June 2009


I REFER to the letter, 'Why is there uneven enforcement of certain rules and regulations?' by reader Paul Antony Fernandez (The New Paper, 17Jun).

The Cat Welfare Society has been working on promoting responsible feeding among the community of cat lovers and caregivers for many years.

It is our aim to educate and inform the public about the potential problems that leaving food behind for cats can possibly cause.

We encourage all cat feeders to clear up after the cats are done eating, to feed at ground level, away from high traffic areas, and discourage them from feeding on other floors of high-rise buildings.

A 'Responsible Feeding' brochure was produced by the society to address this issue.

Perhaps you can help us distribute the brochures and educate the feeders who are not doing it 'right'.

This will go a long way in improving community relations and build harmony between cats and humans in our highly urban environment.

Do contact us at info@catwelfare.org or visit our website for more information.


FROM ANG LI TIN
PRESIDENT, CAT WELFARE SOCIETY

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Send photos of adopted community cats to "What A Pet" on Sunday Times

Published on the last Sunday of every month.

Send to
stlife@sph.com.sg

Include
Name,
Age,
Occupation
and
Contact details,
and type
"What A Pet" in the header

Photos at least 300dpi and include
Pet's name, age, gender and breed.

(breed for local cats can be indicated as DSH or Domestic Shorthair)

Letters in the Sunday Times (28-06-2009)



Rebuttals to these letters can be sent to suntimes@sph.com.sg














































>























LEE CHIU SAN







Cousin of Mr Tan Tuan Khoon - the notorious "Seletar Serial Cat Culler"

Saturday, June 27, 2009

CWS: A Look Ahead

From

http://myanimalfamily.blogspot.com/2009/06/cws-look-ahead.html
Friday, June 26, 2009

CWS: A Look Ahead

Cat Welfare Society has had a solid month of fundraising with the LPN Cat Day at Suntec City, the Cat’s Night Out “In Search of the Most Beautiful Domestic Cat” at Jurong Point and that unforgettably tongue-in-cheek STrip “What’s New Pussycat?” campaign.


Besides raising funds for stray sterilisation, these light-hearted occasions gave us a rare chance to let our hair down with other cat groups, volunteers and with the public.

Now the fun is over, it is time to get back down to the serious business of cat welfare.

Engaging govt agencies

CWS is planning a series of engagements with AVA, HDB and Town Councils. And it cannot be timelier that Sunday Times dedicated a full page on animal welfare last weekend, giving voice to the poisoned bayshore cats, abandoned animals and tireless animal welfare volunteers.

(They had to juxtapose it with an article on our good friend Mr TTK to provide a perfunctory journalistic balance to the spread, but that is easily forgiven. A contrary article on a less controversial figure would have been more detrimental. So thank you, Sunday Times.)

Also featured in the full page coverage is a small victory for cat welfare. AVA has put it on record, “AVA… is again open to subsidising the cost of sterilisation of stray cats, if caregivers, town councils and communities are willing to participate.”

So our upcoming meeting with them can now fast track to the mechanics of the stray cat sterilisation scheme: what is required of town councils and volunteers, and how to streamline the scheme for greater success.

After which, we can start working with dedicated caregivers whose stray management work in their areas through Trap-Neuter-Release-Manage or TNRM, mediation and community building work has reached a healthy maturity. We will talk to their Town Councils first.

How you can help:
If you are a caregiver with a well managed cat community, come forward. Also start keeping records of the number of cats in your neighbourhood, the number of cats you have sterilised, your encounters with Town Councils and the number of complaints handled as these will go a long way when we engage them.

If your area does not have a TNRM programme, start one! Look out for our upcoming stray cat management workshop and meet-up on how to get started.

Sterilisation

CWS continues to single-mindedly put our funds into subsidising the sterilisation of stray cats. All our fundraising efforts are for this very purpose.

We get appeals from time to time to provide financial help for caregivers in need and for cat rescues. And this the committee members and volunteers do on our own personal basis.

The reason CWS funds are not diverted that way is this: The cold honest truth is that we have had to dig into our reserves last year to cover sterilisation and medical subsidies. And one had to go. It is a sign of the times that donations are down and reimbursements for subsidies are up.

We must keep stray cat sterilisation going simply because sterilisation makes the biggest impact to the welfare of our cats in the long run. It is this consistent, demanding, unglamourous work by dedicated caregivers and volunteers that provides a compelling reason for AVA to enter into a dialogue with cat welfare advocates. And we cannot afford to derail now.

The moment the government finally takes on the funding of stray cat sterilisation, that will really open up everyone’s resources to help the sick and suffering.

That moment is close and what will get us there is to make sure more community cats are sterilised and managed.

How you can help:
Start a TNRM programme in your neighbourhood. The next best thing is to sponsor a sterilisation!

Mediation

This is something that we struggle with immensely because we don’t have a full-time person in CWS. The committee members and volunteers handle our cases after hours or through phones and emails.

Mediation remains the most stressful, unrewarding part of cat welfare work. Being yelled at by irate people with cat pee on their slippers after a long day at work is not anyone’s idea of a fulfilling existence. But we still do it, together with our network of caregivers and volunteers because it goes hand in hand with TNRM. Stray management just doesn’t work without it.

What we find is that people come to CWS for a magic pill. And five after-hours dispensers to pill an entire nation is beyond ridiculous. We need more mediators.

It is a fact that Singaporeans hold an uncanny esteem for authority. People from an organisation are often seen as more respectable than someone from the neighbourhood. That is how Singaporeans work, so “I am from Cat Welfare Society” goes a long way. But anyone with the passion, a little gumption and knowledge can register with CWS and fulfill this role. And all the better if they are actual residents in the neighbourhood.

These resident mediators have their nose on the ground, they get to the problems quicker and they can better establish long term relationships with the Town Council officers and other residents. Town Councils can’t ignore them simply because they are residents, therefore constituents and more importantly, voters.

The magic pill? Don’t yell back and don’t wear your house clothes when mediating.

As much as mediation is daunting and completely thankless, just a word from you can save a cat from being caught and culled. If you are lucky, you can instill a little conscience in the neighbourhood, one cheesed off resident at a time.

How you can help:
If you want to be a mediator for your neighbourhood, register with CWS and contact your Town Council officer. Also look out for our upcoming stray cat management workshop and meet-up on how to get started.


Beyond CWS

If you have been following the posts and thread on the Cat Welfare Society’s Facebook page, you would have a good idea of the spectrum of cat welfare activities required to fully tackle an issue as broad as cat welfare.

There are the numerous appeals for medical fees for sick or injured cats, the many catteries and shelters in trouble in these tough economic times, cats and kittens that need fosterers and homes, AVA officers and Town Council officers to negotiate with and the unenlightened public to educate. As individuals, where do we start?

My own experience with the animalfamily is to start where your passion takes you. I started with the rescue and adoption of an old mangy toothless cat that stole my heart.

6 years on, the family has 10 cats at home, 40 cats fostered (and thankfully rehomed), hundreds sterilised and we dream of a cattery. We have seen cat shelters and their antithesis, cat hoarders and left a part of ourselves with each and everyone of these animals, the cheery ones, the sadly neglected, the dying and the dead.

Still, it is not enough. There must be a more sustainable solution to the plight of our cats, the kind that makes it less necessary to take cats off our streets for anything other than to loving homes. This will happen only when the responsibility for stray cat welfare is not just on caregivers but the entire nation. That is the prize worth working towards.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Some residents will complain to the town council about cats resting on public benches

"Cats of the World" Photo Exhibition: The Arts House from 9 to 28 July 2009

CAT MANAGEMENT: Be proactive in dealing with strays


The Electric New Paper :
CAT MANAGEMENT
Be proactive in dealing with strays
25 June 2009

I REFER to the letter 'Why is there uneven enforcement of certain rules and regulations?' (The New Paper, 17 Jun).

I can empathise with letter writer, Mr Paul Antony Fernandez.

When I moved into my neighbourhood five years ago, I came across feeders who left a mess after feeding the cats.

There was also the occasional nocturnal noise from caterwauling.

Then a few residents and I started cat management, including trapping stray cats for sterilisation.

We also speak to the feeders about responsible feeding.

The number of cats has since dropped significantly.

A feeder in her 80s was also very pleased as she said she no longer needed to push around a trolley of cat food.

Trap-neuter-release-manage or cat management is effective in reducing feline annoyance.

I appeal to Mr Fernandez to contact the Cat Welfare Society (www.catwelfare.org) on how to start one in your neighbourhood.

Don't just complain. Be proactive. It works.

FROM READER DR TAN CHEK WEE

Abandoning pets should never be an option for owners

The Straits Times
STForum Online
June 25, 2009
Abandoning pets should never be an option for owners

I REFER to last Saturday's Forum Online letter by Mr Ang Jun Ping, 'Crack down on animal abusers', and would like to thank him for speaking up on this issue.

The Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) supports his call for those who mistreat and abandon pets to be punished. Unfortunately, there were no witnesses to the recent acts of abandonment and mistreatment highlighted in the press, so the owners are unlikely to be prosecuted.

As Mr Ang mentioned, many people buy pets recklessly and on impulse, only to abandon them when the novelty wears off. The SPCA, unfortunately, is on the receiving end of this practice, with countless unwanted pets received every month.

The main reason people give for not wanting their pet any more is, 'no time to look after'.

Up to half of the 700 animals received every month by us are unwanted and abandoned pets. In May alone, more than 120 unwanted small domestic animals, including rabbits and hamsters, were taken in by the SPCA.

If pet owners could take on the responsibility of finding new homes for their animals, instead of handing them over to the SPCA, we would not have to face dreaded decisions daily which affect each and every life that is passed over to us.

Due to the large number we receive, and the fact that only 85 animals on average are adopted each month, there are selection criteria for animals we can keep for adoption, based on health, temperament, age and space.

Although we have been looking at new ways to decrease our euthanasia rate - which is dropping considerably, through sterilisation of strays and counselling people on the implications if they give up a pet or a stray to the SPCA, the SPCA sadly still has to put too many unwanted animals to sleep.

We believe that potential pet owners should be counselled thoroughly and briefed on their responsibilities before owning a pet, as currently there does not seem to be enough education at the point of sale. This results in widespread discarding when the novelty wears off and when the pet's needs become more apparent.

SPCA's prime role is the prevention of cruelty to animals and education, but this, our core mission, is overshadowed at times when we are daily put in a position of having to decide the fate of the many unwanted pets entrusted to us.

Our wish for all pets is that they be treated as a lifetime commitment and as a treasured family member. Abandonment should never be an option.

Deirdre Moss (Ms)

Executive Officer

Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Milo and Otis part 1

Respect other people's beliefs

The Electric New Paper :
Respect other people's beliefs
24 June 2009

I READ the letter, 'Ban pets from open exercise areas' (The New Paper, 17 Jun) and the response from another reader, 'Exercise area is public space, so everyone has right to take pets there' (The New Paper, 18Jun).

I love animals, especially dogs, but I think the view expressed in the second letter is slightly inconsiderate.

Not all people who go to fitness corners to train will be happy to see someone's pet loitering there or being tied to exercise equipment.

They may have their personal reasons for this, linked to hygiene or religious beliefs.

As Singaporeans, I think we must learn to respect people from other races, their beliefs and practices.

As pet owners, we should understand certain things and limit ourselves from taking our pets to some places.

Exercise areas are public places, but they are meant for people and not for animals. What can pets do in exercise areas? Exercise?

I hope the town councils will look into this matter.

FROM READER RAMESH KANNAN

"Suffer the Little Critters" Sunday Times

"Suffer the Little Critters" Sunday Times

Perception and policy are barriers in the fight for animal rights in Singapore

Suffer the little critters
Tan Dawn Wei, Straits Times 21 Jun 09;

When stray cats in Bayshore Park condominium started falling ill nearly two weeks ago from what looked to be a case of mischievous poisoning, cat lovers and animal welfare groups sprang into action.

Residents organised night patrols while the Cat Welfare Society and the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) put up a $2,000 reward for information. Likewise, donations poured in after a pomeranian was found discarded in a plastic bag in East Coast Park two weeks ago.

Animal activism is alive and well in Singapore, but as they say, activism thrives only in the face of inequality. And when it comes to four-legged creatures, they are certainly not man's best friend here, say animal welfare groups.

Cases of abuse have routinely surfaced in the press in the past few years; they hit a record high in March, when the SPCA received 95 reports of abuse. It usually gets between 60 and 80 reports a month.

The Straits Times' Forum pages have seen more complaints about cats and dogs in neighbourhoods, as well as appeals from those who speak up for the animals. This tension between those who have taken up defending animals' rights and those who would rather live without them is not likely to go away.

'I hate it when they poop and pee around my neighbourhood. I wish someone would come and take them away,' said Miss Geraldine Sim, 24, a student who lives in Hougang. Hers is a common refrain that volunteers at the Cat Welfare Society hear. It gets an average of one such complaint a week, and also from those claiming stray cats have scratched their cars.

'I have people sending me pictures of their cars with long, weird scratches. It's not possible a cat did that,' said Ms Ang Li Tin, 28, the society's president.

Such grouses are only the tip of the iceberg for small, volunteer-run animal welfare groups that have stepped up in the past decade to share the SPCA's heavy load.

Not all see eye to eye with the SPCA, which receives the bulk of public donations by virtue of its brand name and charity status.

And they certainly have bones to pick with the Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority (AVA) and Housing Board (HDB) over their pet policies. A few groups have disbanded, but those that have stayed the course are more active than ever.

Two years ago, Action For Singapore Dogs (ASD) started an Adoption and Rescue Centre in Lim Chu Kang when it realised the number of dogs that needed help far exceeded the number of its foster homes.

Today, it is running at a near-capacity of 80 dogs, all waiting to go to good homes. But groups say the issues they have been fighting for have been the same for the past 10 years: advocating sterilisation over culling, getting HDB to relax rules on pet ownership, creating more public awareness, and curbing the breeding and import of pedigrees.

'Even small steps we're trying to take up with the authorities have been rejected,' said Mr Ricky Yeo, 40, the president of ASD, which was started in 2000 and has an annual budget of $250,000. The money comes mostly from donations.

In 2004, Mr Yeo proposed a year-long pilot project to HDB that would allow residents within a few blocks to keep larger dogs. The ASD was willing to manage the blocks, but the proposal was shot down.

HDB does not allow flat-dwellers to keep dogs weighing more than 10kg and over 40cm in height. Cats are banned outright - a sore point among cat lovers, who have also been trying to get the authorities to loosen up.

Given that 80 per cent of the population live in HDB flats, groups have a hard time rehousing the animals they help and containing the large stray population.

It is estimated there are 60,000 feral cats that roam the streets and 5,000 to 8,000 stray dogs.

The state's quick fix is to cull.

Some 5,000 dogs were put down last year via lethal injections delivered by the AVA and SPCA. Cats culled double the number of dogs.

But pro-animal groups' beef with the animal regulator and town councils is not so much that they are putting thousands of cats and dogs to sleep a year, but that they are doing so indiscriminately.

Community cats with tipped ears, a symbol they have been neutered, have also been rounded up.

'It doesn't solve the problem because the cats causing the over-population problem are not the ones that got caught, which are already sterilised,' said Ms Ang. Cat lovers argue that culling only creates a vacuum effect: get rid of the old cats and new cats will move in.

Instead, all the groups advocate a Trap-Neuter-Release-Manage (TNRM) method, a programme that is seen as a more humane and effective alternative to culling.

Cats and dogs are captured, sterilised and returned to their community where they can no longer breed, while stray feeders make sure they do not go hungry. A managed colony will keep the population in check as fertile cats from outside the area will not enter.

In a successful case study by the Nanyang Technological University in 2004, a group of faculty members piloted a method of managing campus cats. Called the Cat Cafe system, it follows the TNRM approach, with seven feeding locations around the university grounds. Since then, the cat population on campus has dropped from an estimated 120 to 80.

Mr Kevin Jones, 51, a computer science lecturer at NTU who expanded the cat cafe concept and wrote a paper about it, said the knee-jerk manner in which the authorities react to public complaints by culling gets his goat. He cited the culling of cats that took place during the 2003 Sars outbreak.

'Without any scientific proof, the authorities acted...to halt their ongoing sterilisation programme and began to cull cats, even those previously sterilised,' he said.

'In the end, the link between Sars and domestic cats was debunked, yet there has never been an accounting for the unnecessary culling, nor has the sterilisation programme been reinstated.'

The AVA stopped its cat sterilisation programme in 2003 after five years as it was still getting 5,000 complaints a year about strays. It also said that the culling of cats had nothing to do with Sars but was an effort to improve public hygiene.

While the AVA is adamant about continuing to impound stray dogs, which it says can pose a threat to public safety, it now says it is again open to subsidising the cost of sterilisation of stray cats, if caregivers, town councils and communities are willing to participate.

This is good news, said MettaCats founder Lee Siew Ying, 56.

'This will save a lot of lives. If AVA makes this programme official again, we will have grounds to fight those who complain and want the cats culled,' she said.

Despite their gripes, groups say strides have been made. AVA has toughened its laws to protect animals and there is a greater awareness of animal welfare issues, although groups question if the state should enforce the rules more.

In the past five years, more individuals and informal groups of animal activists have sprung up on the Internet. Animal welfare student societies have been set up at National University of Singapore, Singapore Management University and NTU.

The trio held an Animal Welfare Symposium in May last year and organised a second one this year.

Said Miss Yeow Hui Qi, president of SMU People for Animal Welfare and a second-year accountancy student: 'We've seen big-scale fund-raising events for the less fortunate people. How about one for the animal shelters?'

But groups say their work will never end - unless there is a change in government policy and more Singaporeans grow a heart for animals.

'We've come to a stage where we're stagnant unless there are policy changes. How can you just keep taking in animals when there is a limit to space and resources?' Mr Yeo pointed out.

Additional reporting by Teo Wan Gek, Huang Huifen and Estelle Low

'It makes me a better person'
Straits Times 21 Jun 09;


Ms Wendy Chui, 36, has been volunteering about once a week at the Action for Singapore Dogs' (ASD) Adoption and Rescue Centre for the past four years. -- ST PHOTO: LAU FOOK KONG

Ms Wendy Chui had her heart broken recently. If only she knew who broke it.

The culprit was someone who laid traps deep in the woods of Lim Chu Kang for a pack of about 10 dogs that she and other dog lovers had been feeding for two years.

She felt that something was amiss when a few of them spotted gashes or fractures on the dogs' legs. Then, all but one disappeared. She was told by residents that they died 'horrible deaths'.

'It's sad, of course, but it also spurs us to think of ways around the problem,' said the 36-year-old administrator at a pharmaceutical company.

'This is life. You can't save every single dog, but you can certainly try, and you learn your lesson and do better next time.'

She managed to rescue the last one, but one of its legs which was caught in a trap may have to go.

When you have seen enough cases of abandoned or abused dogs, you try to focus on the bright side - like seeing these same rescued dogs recover from their ordeal and eventually going to good homes, she said.

'This is what keeps me going,' said Ms Chui, who has been a volunteer with the Action For Singapore Dogs (ASD) for the past four years. She is single and has a dog of her own.

She volunteers at the ASD's Adoption and Rescue Centre in Lim Chu Kang about once a week. She feels it makes her a better person.

She makes no bones about her disdain for those in the anti-animal camp, like animal abusers. 'These people have twisted minds, deep insecurity or an inferior complex, targeting helpless animals who can't fight back,' she said.

Tan Dawn Wei

'I help stray cats end their suffering'
Estelle Low, Straits Times 21 Jun 09;

You can call him a kitty killer and he will not mind.

Retiree Tony Tan Tuan Khoon, 64, makes no bones that he has trapped more than 300 stray cats in his Seletar Hills estate and sent them to the Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority of Singapore to be put to sleep.

In fact, he insists that he is being kind. He said research has shown that stray cats usually cannot live for more than five years compared to indoor cats. 'Who's the cruel one? I'm not cruel. I'm helping them to end their suffering.'

In 2002, stray cats had kittens in the space between his roof and ceiling, causing the plywood ceiling boards to give way. He has also had to fumigate his house twice to get rid of the fleas brought in by strays. The cats have also chased his pet rabbit and stolen his food.

Mr Tan got so incensed that he started making his own cat traps - upsized versions of mouse traps.

The former marketing manager in an engineering company said that he has solved 'more than 70 per cent of the problem' since he started trapping the cats.

He spends a lot of his time sending e-mail to government agencies urging them to look into the stray cat issue. He said the authorities must start micro-chipping cats so that owners will shoulder more responsibility. He also wants the HDB to lift the ban on cat ownership.

His work has ignited fury among animal lovers. An online search of his name threw up more than 16,000 search results that link to forums and animal welfare groups that describe him as 'vicious', 'sick' and 'psychotic'.

Netizens also blame him for causing a rise in the number of rats in Orchard Road and Geylang Serai. But he thinks it is time for animal welfare groups to be realistic.

'Who's the vicious one? Is it me or the ones who feed stray cats and let them die a slow, painful death?'

He thinks there are more like-minded people like him but who do not dare speak up 'for fear of a backlash from these vocal, vicious animal supporters'.

Dumped like a piece of trash
Straits Times 21 Jun 09;

Two weeks ago, this pomeranian was stuffed into a plastic bag, dumped near a rubbish bin at East Coast Park and left for dead.

If marketing executive Rayne Gan had not gone fishing near Bedok Jetty with her friends that Friday night, the dog might have gone to the incinerator the next day.

As luck would have it, Ms Gan's friend had brought his pet husky along. It showed intense interest in the red plastic bag.

When she checked, Ms Gan found the tiny dog, motionless and covered in its own pee and poo. When she looked closer, she saw that the dog was still breathing.

The dog's plight riled animal lovers after Ms Gan, 26, wrote to The Straits Times Forum to relate what had happened.

'I only hope that if we bring attention to this, some witnesses may step forward. I hope the owner will regret what he or she has done and that the person will be punished,' she said.

Under the law, anyone found guilty of abandoning an animal can be fined up to $10,000 and jailed for up to a year.

While Ms Gan has had no luck so far in tracking down her new charge's former owner, the malnourished dog - which she has named Pom Pom - is making a good recovery.

Initially unable to walk because of a nerve injury, Pom Pom is now taking wobbly baby steps, thanks to the tender loving care from Ms Gan and her friend, an experienced dog rescuer who is now fostering it.

The two give Pom Pom, who is about seven years old, daily massages and take it swimming at a pet pool in Pasir Ris as therapy.

Donations have also poured in after Ms Gan, who has two dogs of her own, appealed online for pee pads, milk and clothing.

'People have come forward with money too, but we don't wish to take it unless we can't afford Pom Pom's bills any more,' she said.

She has received enquiries from three individuals interested in adopting the dog, but she has not decided who to give Pom Pom to. 'It has to be someone who can commit to the dog and ensure it gets well. It still has a long road to full recovery,' she said.

Tan Dawn Wei

STIFFER PENALTIES FOR CAT ABUSERS

MY PAPER WEDNESDAY JUNE 24, 2009

MY SAY

STIFFER PENALTIES FOR CAT ABUSERS

I READ about cats being killed in Serangoon North Avenue 1 and at Bayshore Park condominium on citizen-journalism website Stomp.

As cat-abuse cases seem to be on the rise, the authorities should review the penalties imposed on offenders.

As fines and short jail terms seem to be having no effect, why not consider imposing stricter penalties, such as caning and longer imprisonment terms?

Cats, dogs and other animals have the right to share the earth with humans.

They do not deserve to be treated like refuse.

Madam Aliyah Md Taib

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Online Only – We only have ourselves to blame

Today Online
Online Only – We only have ourselves to blame
02:00 PM Jun 23, 2009
Letter from Dr Tan Chek Wee

I have lived in a Housing and Development Board (HDB) estate all my life.

I am aware of the state of cleanliness, or rather the lack of it, in an HDB estate. I know the estate cleaners. I am in contact with the town council as I am part of the “cat management” team in my neighbourhood, who not only trap stray cats for sterilisation, but assist the property officers to look into complaints about cats.

The cleaners and the town council officers work very hard to keep the estate clean but it is an uphill task. The reason is simple. The majority of us, i.e. the residents, just do not care about our environment. We are only selfishly concerned with our own conveniences and can’t even be bothered to walk even one metre to discard our rubbish into the garbage bin. We can not only boast of having the world’s highest density of garbage bins, but also our “bochap” (”couldn’t care less”) and “boh hew” (”couldn’t be bothered”) attitude.

We have a well-established “complaining culture”. As we become more educated, we are able to complain even more – not only through the usual channel of phone calls but also through emails, letters to the press, in Internet forums, etc. Some town council officers, in the belief that the speed at which a complaint is “resolved” equals efficiency, will resort to knee-jerk but ineffective solutions.

One clear example is the poisoning of pigeons when a complaint is received about a flock that gathers at foot of a block of HDB flats because some “bored” residents have thrown food down. It requires harder work to identify the culprit and to educate residents in general about refraining from such irresponsible deeds.

Repeated calls for residents to be engaged in the management of the estate is met with poor response. One reason could be that town council officers are so used to complaints as a basis to work from, that they do not know how to respond to residents who wish to be engaged in resolving communal issues.

One example being issues about cats. I am in the network of residents involved in “cat management”, where residents volunteer their effort, time and money to reduce the stray cat population through sterilisation.

I have heard of “bad” treatment of some “cat caregivers” by some town council officers who view their effort as obstacles to resolving a complaint quickly – especially if the complainant is a “big shot” or has been “aggressive” by culling the cats in the vicinity of the complaint. Culling of cats is another knee-jerk solution.

My worry about recent calls to assess town councils will result in more “knee jerk” solutions being applied to resolve as many complaints as possible, and as quickly as possible. Never mind if the problems keep recurring.

Until we can treat the world as our home, and not just care about our physical homes, and develop a sense of respect for our environment and all other creatures that share it, our selfishness is only to be blamed for our poor state of hygiene.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Old Stomp article on Cats & Car















From http://forums.hardwarezone.com.sg/showthread.php?t=2408727


This two-week-old kitten was stuck in the undercarriage of STOMPer Francis Nai's car for one whole day and was rescued after the owner dismantled part of his car.

The 42-year-old businessman had a fright when his friend told him that 'something' was dangling from under his car on 18 June.

Earlier, he had parked his car in Serangoon Central.

Mr Nai and his friend checked the car but did not find anything. It was only after he heard a mew that he realised a cat could have been stuck in it.

He said he went to a mechanic immediately. Both searched for the kitten, but it seemed to have disappeared. The next morning, while the STOMPer was starting his car, he heard the kitten again. He said: "Confirm there's a cat! I went to the mechanic again, and this time we dismantled parts of the undercarriage."

They finally found the kitten, and Mr Nai quickly brought it to a vet. "It's just a little kitten! The vet told us that it's only 2 weeks old," said the STOMPer.

"I don't know how it got there, but I suspect the mother hid it in my car thinking it's a safe place for her kitten." Since it is quite impossible to return the kitten to its mother, Mr Nai and his family decided to keep it as a pet.

"I'm just glad that it survived because the car engine can be very hot. I hope keeping it will bring me some good luck," he said with a laugh.
Reply With Quote

Singaporeans should follow Moroccan cat lovers’ example

MY PAPER MONDAY JUNE 22, 2009
MY SAY

Singaporeans should follow Moroccan cat lovers’ example


OVER the past few months, there have been countless reports of cat abuse.

It is sad that cats are mostly the ones which are suffering, compared to other animals such as rabbits, hamsters or dogs.

Some even claim in the press that they are performing a good deed by ending the lives of these harmless animals.

Are Singaporeans out of their minds?

While people all over the world are fighting for animal conservation and saving creatures such as pandas, kangaroos and whales, we are torturing the only animals that we have – cats and dogs.

I was in Morocco last month and observed a group of tourists trying to feed the cats in an alley at the Djemaa el Fna marketplace.

The locals stopped them and asked the tourists what food they were planning to feed the stray cats.

I could not believe that the locals actually checked and verified that the food was safe before allowing the tourists to feed the strays.

I wish that my fellow Singaporeans could be just like them.

I wish that Singaporeans would care.

We do not need to feed the cats, pamper them or taste their food before we feed them.

All I am asking is that we not abuse them.

After all, it is not as if they have done us any harm.

The cats and dogs in our streets are the only animals we have running free in our country.

Let us try to show them some love.

Ms Siti Raudhah Ishak

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Update on Kopi-Torie

video
A very senior cat that used to live in the vicinity of a coffee-shop. She was neutered a long time ago when ears were not tipped.
She suffered a fracture of a hind limb that required surgical fixation.
A long time caregiver called Lily decided to adopt her.

She is estimated to be more than 10 years of age.

This proves a well cared community cat can a long time and that it can adapt to an indoor home environment even when adopted at a "senior" age.

Tony Tan Kuan Koon, "I help stray cats end their suffering"

The Sunday Times
21st June 2009





The rabbit is on a wire floor!
Read http://www.rabbit.org/faq/sections/housing.html

"Is it OK to keep my rabbit in a cage with a wire floor?

Rabbits were not designed to live on wire floors--they're hard on their feet (which have no pads on the, like cats or dogs). If you must use a cage with a wire floor, you need to provide your rabbit with a resting board or rug for her to sit on, otherwise she will spend all of her time in her litterbox.

You can find cages with slatted plastic floors, which are more comfortable, or you can use a solid floor. As long as your rabbit has a litterbox in the corner that he chooses as his bathroom, there shouldn't be much of a mess to clean up."

























Write to suntimes@sph.com.sg to appeal to AVA to stop killing the cats for Tony Tan using taxpayers' money.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Crack down on animal abusers

The Straits Times
Online STForum
June 20, 2009

Crack down on animal abusers

I REFER to letters by Miss Rayne Gan and Ms Irene Low ("Dog found dumped near rubbish bin", June 8; and "Punish those who mistreat and abandon pets", June 10).

After reading about the plight of the animals, I felt frustrated and shocked that such heartless people exist.

Most people buy pets recklessly. After they realise how difficult it is to raise one, they abandon it. If owners do not want their pets any more, they should give them up to the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals as the animals will be provided with food and care. Abandoning them is tantamount to cruelty.

We should jail and cane those who abuse their pets. This will deter them from abusing animals.

Ang Jun Ping

Friday, June 19, 2009

How Could You?



Jim Willis 2001

When I was a puppy I entertained you with my antics and made you laugh. You called me your child and despite a number of chewed shoes and a couple of murdered throw pillows, I became your best friend. Whenever I was "bad," you'd shake your finger at me and ask "How could you?" - but then you'd relent and roll me over for a bellyrub.

My housetraining took a little longer than expected, because you were terribly busy, but we worked on that together. I remember those nights of nuzzling you in bed, listening to your confidences and secret dreams, and I believed that life could not be any more perfect. We went for long walks and runs in the park, car rides, stops for ice cream (I only got the cone because "ice cream is bad for dogs," you said), and I took long naps in the sun waiting for you to come home at the end of the day.

Gradually, you began spending more time at work and on your career, and more time searching for a human mate. I waited for you patiently, comforted you through heartbreaks and disappointments, never chided you about bad decisions, and romped with glee at your homecomings, and when you fell in love.

She, now your wife, is not a "dog person" - still I welcomed her into our home, tried to show her affection, and obeyed her. I was happy because you were happy. Then the human babies came along and I shared your excitement. I was fascinated by their pinkness, how they smelled, and I wanted to mother them, too. Only she and you worried that I might hurt them, and I spent most of my time banished to another room, or to a dog crate. Oh, how I wanted to love them, but I became a "prisoner of love."

As they began to grow, I became their friend. They clung to my fur and pulled themselves up on wobbly legs, poked fingers in my eyes, investigated my ears and gave me kisses on my nose. I loved everything about them and their touch - because your touch was now so infrequent - and I would have defended them with my life if need be.

I would sneak into their beds and listen to their worries and secret dreams. Together we waited for the sound of your car in the driveway. There had been a time, when others asked you if you had a dog, that you produced a photo of me from your wallet and told them stories about me. These past few years, you just answered "yes" and changed the subject. I had gone from being "your dog" to "just a dog," and you resented every expenditure on my behalf.

Now you have a new career opportunity in another city, and you and they will be moving to an apartment that does not allow pets. You've made the right decision for your "family," but there was a time when I was your only family.

I was excited about the car ride until we arrived at the animal shelter. It smelled of dogs and cats, of fear, of hopelessness. You filled out the paperwork and said "I know you will find a good home for her." They shrugged and gave you a pained look. They understand the realities facing a middle-aged dog or cat, even one with "papers." You had to pry your son's fingers loose from my collar as he screamed "No, Daddy! Please don't let them take my dog!" And I worried for him, and what lessons you had just taught him about friendship and loyalty, about love and responsibility, and about respect for all life. You gave me a goodbye pat on the head, avoided my eyes, and politely refused to take my collar and leash with you. You had a deadline to meet and now I have one, too.

After you left, the two nice ladies said you probably knew about your upcoming move months ago and made no attempt to find me another good home. They shook their heads and asked "How could you?"

They are as attentive to us here in the shelter as their busy schedules allow. They feed us, of course, but I lost my appetite days ago. At first, whenever anyone passed my pen, I rushed to the front, hoping it was you - that you had changed your mind - that this was all a bad dream...or I hoped it would at least be someone who cared, anyone who might save me. When I realized I could not compete with the frolicking for attention of happy puppies, oblivious to their own fate, I retreated to a far corner and waited.

I heard her footsteps as she came for me at the end of the day and I padded along the aisle after her to a separate room. A blissfully quiet room. She placed me on the table, rubbed my ears and told me not to worry. My heart pounded in anticipation of what was to come, but there was also a sense of relief. The prisoner of love had run out of days. As is my nature, I was more concerned about her. The burden which she bears weighs heavily on her and I know that, the same way I knew your every mood.

She gently placed a tourniquet around my foreleg as a tear ran down her cheek. I licked her hand in the same way I used to comfort you so many years ago. She expertly slid the hypodermic needle into my vein. As I felt the sting and the cool liquid coursing through my body, I lay down sleepily, looked into her kind eyes and murmured "How could you?"

Perhaps because she understood my dogspeak, she said "I'm so sorry." She hugged me and hurriedly explained it was her job to make sure I went to a better place, where I wouldn't be ignored or abused or abandoned, or have to fend for myself - a place of love and light so very different from this earthly place. With my last bit of energy, I tried to convey to her with a thump of my tail that my "How could you?" was not meant for her. It was you, My Beloved Master, I was thinking of. I will think of you and wait for you forever.

May everyone in your life continue to show you so much loyalty.

The End

The heartless father

Today Online
Online Only - The heartless father
Updated 05:04 PM Jun 18, 2009
Letter from Joanna Yeo

I refer to “You sneeze, it suffers” from Dr Tan Chek Wee (June 17) and can’t help but feel utterly disgusted with the way the family has been treating their pet dog.

Sad to say, this behaviour is not uncommon. Many families abandon their dogs when they have newborns/children in the house. They fail to realise that dogs also have feelings and do not deserve to be treated in this horrible way. The most often-quoted reason why they choose to give away their dogs is the myth that dogs can cause allergies in children.

This is not accurate. Studies have shown that children who grow up with dogs tend to have a stronger immune system and will not be prone to so many allergies. It is shameful that the GP in the story, a doctor who’s supposed to know better, doesn’t seem to have this most basic of knowledge.

I am disgusted most with the husband in the report who had the pet dog before he got married and became a father. I cannot comprehend how someone can be so heartless to abandon a loyal friend who had been there for him all these years just because he now has another “object of desire” - a child of his own. I hope that he will not get abandoned by his child when he is old and becomes an “unwanted object".

Dharma The Cat



This video is of the hugely popular comic strip Dharma The Cat by Emmy award winning writer David Lourie which has been published in magazines in 28 countries and in 18 languages. The unique style of the series combines humor with philosophy and spirituality. http://www.dharmathecatcartoons.com/

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Do You Long to Adopt a Cat, But Are Allergic to Them?

Do You Long to Adopt a Cat, But Are Allergic to Them?

Although some people avoid cats because they fear or dislike them, there is some hope for those who avoid cats because of fear of allergic reactions. A lot will depend on the nature of your allergies. If yours are of the sneezing, watery eyes and running-nose variety, you may be able to build up your tolerance to cats. However, before getting a cat, you should undergo allergy testing first, particularly if you suffer from asthma. About 30-40% of children/young adults with asthma are allergic to animal dander (primarily cats). For more information, read this article from the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology.

Read on.....

Why is there uneven enforcement of certain rules and regulations?

The Electric New Paper :
Why is there uneven enforcement of certain rules and regulations?
18 June 2009

I AM an avid reader of the Stomp website, especially the 'Ugly Commuters' section.

Almost every day, there is a posting of someone blatantly eating or drinking inside MRT trains, despite clear signs prohibiting this.

Why is it that no action appears to have been taken by train operators against these uncivil and anti-social passengers?

In contrast, a passenger wrote in last month about not being allowed to sip water after taking some medication on a station platform.

Can the relevant authorities explain why this rule is not more evenly enforced?

Another such contrast is in the area of feeding of animals.

Sometime ago there were media reports about someone being slapped with a deterrent fine by the court for feeding monkeys.

But it is not unusual to see people feeding stray cats in HDB estates.

These cats can disturb residents' sleep with their cries at night.

And those who feed them should be taken to task for not clearing up the mess.

The leftovers can mess up our beautiful and fragrant gardens and leave a stench.

If dog owners are subjected to rules and regulations, so too must those who feed unlicensed and unsterilised cats, allowing them to roam and procreate wantonly.

FROM READER PAUL ANTONY FERNANDEZ

To rebutt - click here

Exercise area is public space, so everyone has right to take pets there

















The Electric New Paper :
Exercise area is public space, so everyone has right to take pets there
19 June 2009

I REFER to the letter 'Ban pets from open exercise areas' (The New Paper, 17 Jun).

I do not think that it is right to request that town councils put up signs banning animals from appearing at public areas such as exercise corners.Â

Since it is a public space, everyone has a right to take his or her pet with them there.

Likewise, if anyone should feel uncomfortable with a place for some personal reasons, they can avoid going there.

One should not expect others to live in accordance to their own beliefs and lifestyles.

The ban will also be difficult to enforce.

How are we going to control strays wandering into public corners such as exercise areas?

Exercise areas are public spaces, and everyone should have access to them.

FROM READER DELPHINE GOH SOON HWAN

Ban pets from open exercise areas

The Electric New Paper :
On inconsiderate pet owners
Ban pets from open exercise areas
MY HUSBAND and I were using the open exercise area at a Pasir Ris HDB estate last weekend when a resident and his family brought a dog there with them.
18 June 2009

MY HUSBAND and I were using the open exercise area at a Pasir Ris HDB estate last weekend when a resident and his family brought a dog there with them.

To my dismay, the dog not only licked the exercise machines but it also urinated at one of the machines.

When I politely told the family to please take the dog away from the exercise area, the woman shouted at me that there were no signs indicating that pets were not allowed there.

It is true that there are no signs barring pets from being brought to the open exercise areas but pet owners should exercise responsibility as well as consideration towards other users of these public spaces.

This is particularly important in our multi-racial country.

I also hope that the town councils will be able to put up signs saying that pets are not allowed on the open exercise grounds.

After all, who would want to use the equipment which a dog has licked and urinated on?

FROM READER SHAHIDAH AYOOB ANGULLIA

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Will this puppy be rescued if it happens here, in Singapore?


LUCKY DYNO: CCTV images show the cocker spaniel stuck in a waste pipe after being flushed down the toilet. (PHOTO: AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE)












LONDON: A puppy in Britain had a lucky escape after a four-year-old boy accidentally flushed it down the toilet when trying to wash it, the Daily Mirror newspaper reported.

The week-old cocker spaniel’s young owner, Daniel Blair, thought the puppy needed a wash after it got muddy playing in the garden, so he put it in the toilet and flushed it.

But his plan went disastrously wrong when the animal was swept away and became trapped in a waste pipe for nearly four hours.

Firefighters and animal-welfare officers could not reach it, so Daniel’s mother eventually called a plumber, who found the dog lying upside down in a pipe about 20m from their house in Northolt, west London.

Plumber Will Craig used a long rod to push the puppy to the nearest manhole cover, where it could be fished out.

“I pushed him really slowly and watched the poor thing wriggling around,” he said.

“Eventually I pushed him far enough for the firemen to grab him. Suddenly everyone started
cheering. We couldn’t believe he was still alive.”

The pooch – now named Dyno after the plumbing firm which rescued it – is well.
– AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

Bayshore Park Poisoning of Cats

My Journal


Blog EntryBayshore Park Poisoning of CatsJun 16, '09 9:24 AM
for everyone

SPCA and Cat Welfare Society are offering a $2,000 Reward for information leading to the apprehension and prosecution of the person who may be responsible for the suspected poisoning of cats at Bayshore Park condominium since Thursday, 11 June 2009.

Please call SPCA at 62875355 ext 9. You may be required to assist the police in their investigation.

Cruelty to animals is a crime under Singapore law and is punishable by imprisonment of up to 12 months and/or fine of up to $10,000.

Don’t jump to conclusions – your pet may not be the cause of your allergies

Today Online

You sneeze, it suffers

Don’t jump to conclusions – your pet may not be the cause of your allergies

05:55 AM Jun 17, 2009
by Dr Tan Chek Wee

FOR years, he was the centre of attraction, a cute little puppy in a family of two elderly parents and an unmarried son.

Then one day the son got married and soon, a child came along.

The child developed a frequent running nose and she was taken to a general practitioner nearby. The GP asked if there were pets in the flat. When the dog was mentioned, the doctor right away identified the dog as the cause.

Since then, the dog has been barricaded in a small corner of the kitchen. His fur is now matted and his nails are long. There are bits of faeces stuck to the fur. He jumps and barks in excitement whenever there are visitors, but no one picks him up, pats him on the head, bathes him or takes him for walks.

I have offered to adopt the dog but the child’s mother said her husband might not be willing to part with it.

I feel sad and helpless.

I can only appeal to my fellow doctor colleagues: Please refer a child with suspected allergies to a specialist to be tested for allergies. Do not make sweeping statements.

Even if the child is laboratory-tested and is allergic to a pet, it is not necessary to so drastically isolate a pet.

There are humane ways to allow allergic people to coexist with a pet. As a last resort, find the pet a good home.

The pet is not guilty.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Why do some people harbour so much anger against cats?



Bayshore Cat Killer....and car owners




A retiree in his 70s who wanted to be known only as Mr Tay had put a cover over his car only to have it ripped. He said he sympathised with the culprit "because he must have done it out of frustration".

Monday, June 15, 2009

There's fight in the ol' Tuas Boy yet

The Electric New Paper :
There's fight in the ol' Tuas Boy yet
15 June 2009

IT doesn't take long for a visitor to see what's wrong with Tuas Boy, a two-month-old mongrel.

Where there was a paw is now a reddish, swollen stump, covered in white antibiotic powder.

The victim of an industrial accident, it had its front foot run over by a forklift on 5 June.

Frantic workers at the factory were forced to saw away its paw to save the dog. Tuas Boy is now recovering at Pet Clinic, off Serangoon Garden Way.

Madam Lee Siew Ying, 56, a clinic administrator who is helping to care for the dog, said the stump is not bandaged because the pup likes to dip it in water.

'This was probably how it dealt with its pain in the days it was at the factory,' she said.

Despite its trauma, Tuas Boy has lost none of its puppy playfulness, licking Madam Lee's face and pawing at her white shirt (with his good paws), during the interview with The New Paper on Sunday.

Madam Lee found out about the dog when a young woman wrote to her pet adoption blog, mettacats.blogspot.com, on Tuesday.

'The webmaster called me and asked if I still had any energy to help,' she said.

Madam Lee said the Tuas factory where the accident took place was the workplace of the email writer's father.

But when Madam Lee got one of her volunteers to go with the girl to retrieve the dog from the factory, they found him locked in a container.

It was only the next morning that they managed to send the puppy - now named Tuas Boy - to Pet Clinic.

'I was worried about gangrene and maggots,' she said.

This is just one of many rescues that Madam Lee has undertaken. She runs Metta Cattery in Pasir Ris.

It is part animal shelter, part cattery. Each month, her expenses come up to about $6,500.

She covers the rental with her salary (she lives in a three-room flat with her husband and son), and accepts food and donations from people who lodge cats there.

It is not known yet how much Tuas Boy's treatment will cost. How will Madam Lee pay the medical bill when it arrives?

One way is to get donors to write cheques directly to the vet. And if that's not enough?

'We ask if we can pay by instalments,' she said.

Online donation drive saves stray dog

Online donation drive saves stray dog
But some ask why go through so much trouble
By Ho Lian-Yi
15 June 2009

AN online plea for funds for a helpless hit-and-run victim isn't unusual.

Just that this time, the victim wasn't human, but a dog.

The plight of Whitefeet, a brown mongrel which lost most of the flesh around a paw in an accident earlier this year, attracted $1,290 in donations.

But aid and sympathy were not the only responses elicited by the post, titled 'Fund raise (sic) for HIT & RUN victim', which was first put up on Hardwarezone forums in April.

It's just a dog, wrote one netizen. Why not raise funds for humans? Others questioned the fuss. Just put it to sleep, said some.

But the fundraisers, childcare teacher Angel Lim and secretary Jasmine Ho, both 35, persevered.

Said Madam Lim: 'To me, the dogs are not only dogs, they are living things. They have lives.'

She has been looking after Whitefeet and six other strays in a temple along Old Woodlands Road for two years.

The owner of Kong Hou Sua Temple, known as MrZhang, had found Whitefeet whimpering in a drain near the temple on 19 Apr, she said.

When the temple owner discovered its injury, he called Madam Lim.

For three days, Madam Lim tried to tend to the dog's wounds herself. But Whitefeet's condition worsened.

She decided Whitefeet had to see a vet.

Miss Ho helped by writing online appeals for money.

When Madam Lim finally took Whitefeet to AMK Veterinary Surgery at Sembawang Road, she said she was scolded for not seeking treatment earlier.

Whitefeet may need to have its foot amputated, she was told.

To make matters worse, the dog - believed to be about seven years old - had heartworms, a parasitic infection.

Mr Adren Lim, 35, a display artist, donated $400.

Why? 'Animals don't talk, they don't voice out, while less fortunate people have charity organisations or MPs to help,' he reasoned.

Miss Delphine Goh, 33, a tele-sales coordinator, donated $50 because, she said, money isn't a concern when it comes to saving animals.

They were among 21 donors who responded. But it turned out that even the $1,290 in donations was not enough. The treatment cost $2,762.

AMK Veterinary Surgery, however, decided to absorb the rest of the cost.

Owner Dr S Thiruchelvam, 59, said his policy is to give strays a flat 20 per cent discount. But he decided to give the fundraisers a one-off discount of more than 50 per cent.

Whitefeet stayed at the clinic for 45 days, an unusually long period.

Mellowed over time

At first, it was fierce. But over time it became very tame and friendly, said Dr Thiru.

'All the clinic staff came to adore it,' he said.

Whitefeet's paw was saved, but he was too old to be treated for heartworm. He was discharged last Saturday.

But the crisis is not over. The temple refuge of the dogs is due to be demolished at the end of this month.

Now Madam Lim is worried about finding homes for the seven large dogs.

She approached six other temples and a number of animal organisations, to no avail. She's still hoping that others may offer aid.

Miss Ho put up another thread on Hardwarezone looking for homes on 19 May. They also tried putting up adoption notices in private estates around Singapore. There has been no response.

The dogs are too big for HDB flats, Madam Lim said. Also, they are not pedigrees, and some are old.

The best option would be to house the dogs in a kennel. But the prices are prohibitive - as high as $2,000 a month - unless Singaporeans are willing to reach into their pockets once more.

# Interested in adopting or sponsoring the dogs? You can contact Madam Lim at garfieldodiesnoopy@yahoo.com.

More cats, birds die at Bayshore Park condominium





The Straits Times
June 14, 2009
More cats, birds die at condo
By Amanda Tan and Kimberly Spykerman

FOUR more sick cats were found at the Bayshore Park condominium over the weekend, bringing the total number of affected cats from the estate to 16 - about half the number of strays there.

The Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals had to put down two cats yesterday. One also died last Friday. SPCA executive director Deirdre Moss said the two cats put down were in bad shape, unresponsive to treatment and 'hardly had any pulse'.

Three birds were also found dead in the estate on Sunday.

Since Thursday, stray cats at the private estate have been found unconscious or disoriented. The police are investigating.

A can of cat food was found at a block in the estate and the SPCA is waiting for test results from the Health Sciences Authority on the food samples. It is also analysing blood samples from the dead cat. The Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority is also conducting a post-mortem on the cat.

Of the 13 cats still alive, one is still on a drip. The rest are alert, said Ms Moss.

The mystery of the sick animals has gripped the 1,093-unit estate and is now the talk of the town. Dog owners have stopped walking their pets while cat owners are keeping them indoors.

A notice by the condo's management said the cats were 'cruelly fed with poisoned food' and advised residents not to let their pets eat food lying around.