The Mews (March-April 2012)

March-April 2012
Spay Day 2012



The first of the two Spay Days in 2012 will be held on 25 May and it promises to be a riot of activity. Caregivers will begin their rounding up of cats to be sterilised the night, if not nights, before and come Friday morning the two drop off points at Ang Mo Kio and Bedok will be bustling with caregivers and volunteers tagging and separating cats to go off to the 25 participating vets island-wide. This year, we are adding an education element to Spay Day with volunteers needed in community education at both drop off points. Volunteers will distribute educational booklets to households and businesses and participate in videos and photo interviews of residents and businesses in the neighbourhood, engaging them in discussions about our community cats. The evening will see the cats coming back from the vets, and being handed back to their respective caregivers. More information here: http://www.catwelfare.org/spayday2012-1.

Fundraising is ongoing for Spay Day, so please donate generously to get our community cats sterilised to manage our community cat populations. One of the CWS volunteers is going to go bald for the cats, and is looking for people to join her in her fund-raising quest (spotlight story).

We are seeking corporate and student volunteers for Spay Day to assist with the educational components of the day. If you would like to assist, please write in to info@catwelfare.org.

Annual General Meeting 2012



From left to right: Mediators reading the article on hoarding, aye to a change in constitution and our youngest member checking our accounts

The 2012 AGM was a multi-pronged affair. Not only were plans laid for 2012, but key constitutional changes were made and those who attended are going to be part of a new campaign to be launched in the coming months.

The committee underwent a shuffle with 2011 President Fareena Omar stepping into the shoes of the Treasurer, as Veron Lau stepped up to the helm with plans to lead CWS to obtaining the status of an Institution of Public Character. Michelle Siau, the lynchpin in mediation in three constituencies, was voted Vice-President of CWS.

Key changes were made to the constitution to ensure that the focus of CWS’ work in the coming years would include education and the launch of a volunteer education kit to educate our younger generations on responsible pet ownership. A copy of the Annual Report can be found here.

A photoshoot was held capturing our dedicated caregivers, volunteers and supporters. The images will be used in a campaign to be launched in coming months.

in the spotlight

Shave Cheryl Save the Cats!

Getting shaved for a cause just got revamped, feline-style. Our volunteer Cheryl's picked Cat Welfare Society as her cause and is getting shaved by a pet groomer at a pet grooming station on 6 May!

"Some friends were mentioning about shaving their heads for a cause on Facebook and I carelessly agreed when I was half asleep. There were many reasons to back out of it the next day but I thought, why not? People from around the world are already doing it for causes they believed in and I believe in the need to promote a humane, responsible and informed society where cats are cared for responsibly as pets and treated with kindness and respect as community cats. That reason alone is good enough to go hairless," says Cheryl (pictured with cat on the right).

She is calling for others to join her for the shave and hopes to raise $10,000 for Spay Day. The head-shaving event will be held on Sunday 6 May 3pm at the Pet Safari store at nex at the same time as our cat adoption drive.

If you would like to donate, please visit www.give.sg/TeamGIVE/cherylch/shave-to-save and if you would like to shave your head (in whole or partially) for this cause, please write to thenuga@catwelfare.org.


Saving Pusara Abadi Cemetery Cats

We are calling for volunteers to help with the cat population at Pusara Abadi Cemetery. The cemetery is located at Lim Chu Kang and the cats there were either abandoned or born on the grounds. A caretaker at the cemetery has been feeding and caring for them, but there is only so much one person could do as numbers increased without sterilisation efforts.

The group of volunteers conducted their first trapping for sterilisation and succeeded in getting 12 cats. All 12 have been sterilised and released back on the grounds. There is still much ground to go, and the volunteers are seeking help.

CWS is sponsoring 20 free sterilisation slots for the cats and dog welfare groups are also stepping in to sterilise the stray dogs found on the grounds. If you are able to help, please get in touch with us at info@catwelfare.org with whether you are interested to volunteer your time or donate monies to their cause.


Two cat BBFs on the grounds (left) and one cat waiting to be transferred to a carrier before being sent for sterilisation (right).
Volunteer’s views

Story by: Gary Sim

In early March this year, I began volunteering with the Cat Welfare Society. I started off helping at one of their mediations in Tampines. We met at one of the blocks in Tampines and the lead mediator Fareena briefed us on the list of complaints and issues that they had received about that specific area. To deal with the issues, we spent some time patrolling the area and speaking with residents about whether they faced any issues and how to solve any problems they might have.

Unfortunately, we encountered one particular complainant who was unhappy about cat fur and scratches on his car. He had shouted at the officers from the Town Council before and wanted all the cats in the area to be removed and destroyed. As a result of his complaint, pest control had been activated to round up the cats. For some reason, they caught two community cats from an entirely different block. The cats have thankfully been bailed out.

We also met caregivers and kindly people who found comfort in being around the community cats. Some even praised the cats for doing a better job at pest control than their human counterparts. I saw faces light up as they shared stories about the cats' habits and personalities. I had brought my camera to do a photo documentation of the cats in the area, to help maintain records, and found willing models in some community cats.

Helping at that mediation opened my eyes to many other issues like controlling the cat population through sterilisation, educating people on responsible pet ownership and fighting against abandonment. This volunteer experience has opened my eyes to the amount of time and effort that has to go into addressing issues faced by humans and community cats so they can co-exist.


Some of the beautiful resident cats catalogued at Tampines.
recent events

Second Animal Symposium

Story by: Tony Ng

Cat sterilisation in the Chong Pang area has been entirely free since late-February, thanks to the Sembawang-Nee Soon Town Council. It was revealed at an animal welfare forum held in late-February that the council will be subsidising 50 per cent of the costs of sterilisation for cats found in the Chong Pang area while the Agri-Food & Veterinary Authority of Singapore (AVA) foots the other half of the bill.

The AVA, Cat Welfare Society (CWS) and four other town councils - Sembawang-Nee Soon, Ang Mo Kio, Marine Parade and Tampines - were responsible for launching the programme back in July 2011. CWS vice-president Veron Lau welcomed the move. She also revealed at the forum that sterilisation rates have gone up by almost 40 per cent from 2010 to 2011.

But the issue of stray cats cannot be solved if one does not tackle the over-arching problem of ownership and pet trade with regulations such as penalties for irresponsible owners, Ms Lau added. She also said that they are currently working out the details of a cat ownership pilot programme.

A workgroup to review animal welfare policies will also be set up by the Government Parliamentary Committee (GPC) for National Development, said GPC member Yeo Guat Kwang at the forum.

About 500 members of the public turned up for the symposium, the second such forum to be held since June last year. The forum gave members of animal welfare groups the opportunity to air issues and enhance animal welfare in Singapore.

upcoming events

"Better With A Cat" Adoption Drive and Spay Day Fundraiser 6 May | 3-8pm | Pet Safari @ nex mall Our adoption drives continue on the first Sunday of each month. Join us in May for the drive and why not go bald to help raise funds for the sterilisation of cats on Spay Day.

Spay Day 2012 25 May | 7am-late | various drop off points The first Spay Day of the year is just around the corner and preparations are underway. More details here: http://www.catwelfare.org/spayday2012-1

Reponsible Pet Ownership Roadshow 9-10 June | full day events | Jurong Point Massive roadshow planned in collaboration with Jurong Point Mall, AVA and other animal welfare groups. Details to be advised.

fun stuff

Bread cats are the new rage. We like this new rage. Check out the facebook page "Putting bread on your cat, so that people think you have a walking sandwich", which on its own makes little sense, but we love cats and we love bread, so what's there not to love about the combo. Also, why no Kayatoastbreadcat?!?
special appeals

Please help the caregivers with their special appeals!

Calipod, a community cat from Geylang was found with her right eye bleeding and bulging out of her eye socket. She has since gone through surgery and is left with partial vision, but she’s a total fighter. Please help her caregiver defray the costs. More here.

This community cat turned up a month prior to going missing for about a week and a half. When he resurfaced, the caregiver found that he was paralysed from waist down though x-rays show no broken bones. Please help his caregiver defray the costs. More here and on Facebook.

This senior community cat has had a tough life – he was diagnosed with stomatitis, had his molars extracted and was discovered to be FIV-positive. His gums were consistently inflamed and he was unable to eat. He had to have dental extractions to hopefully minimise future inflammation. Please help his caregiver defray the costs. More here.

support cws

Make a donation through PayPal, bank transfer, cheque order, or at any AXS Station. Volunteer with us in your areas of expertise. We can always use extra human hands! Adopt a cat and give him/her a loving home for life. Click the link to see our adoption board. Be a CWS member and enjoy sterilisation subsidies and perks at our partner establishments!

"The ideal of calm exists in a sitting cat." – Jules Renard 1864-1910

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