Thursday, 24 January 2008

SPCA on Thaipusam Day

After years of envying those who work in Selangor for getting more public holidays than those of us in the Federal Territory, I whooped with glee when the Prime Minister announced that Thaipusam will now be a gazetted holiday in the Fed Territory as well. We all know it’s a propitiatory offering to the Hindu community in order to get them to support the ruling coalition in the upcoming general elections, and we don’t care! The government could declare every day a paid holiday as far as I am concerned, and I would shake them by the hand and thank them for their magnanimity but not vote the same goons back into power.

And so I spent Thaipusam morning doing some quick cleaning of the Officers’ Mess and weeding the front lawn. By 1100 hours, I was at the SPCA animal shelter to help out, as most of the Hindu staff was on leave.

Things were pretty quiet today as most of the other volunteers will only be here on Saturday. I walked all the dogs in Kennels E and F and gave them baths and tick rinses. Swept the shelter compound and disposed of the litter. Put away the newspapers and donated items. Cleaned out the cat baskets and litter trays in the Cattery. Soaped, disinfected, scrubbed and washed the kennels, central area, cattery and office & reception areas.

A few visitors dropped by to surrender their pets, mostly cats and kittens, who the caregivers insisted they had to give up because ‘there are too many’. I took the time to explain to them the harsh realities and euthanasia rate at animal shelters and expounded the benefits of neutering. I asked the visitors if they loved their cats, and if they wish to save their cats’ lives. I helped them fix neutering appointments with our DBKL Spaying Clinic. I was relieved when 2 out of 3 visitors expressed sadness that their pets, if surrendered, would have to be put down, and upon my advice, willingly agreed to have the adult cats neutered within the month. I really hope they follow through with the kittens.

2 battles won, 50 million more to go.

The drive home was surprisingly smooth for a public holiday. I reached home, washed up, took Boy Scout out to dinner, did the laundry, completed some things I had to do for the MNS Annual Dinner, cleaned the house and retired to bed with a copy of ‘The Consumers’ Guide To Effective Environmental Choices’.

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