Friday, 6th October 2009: So long and good luck, Baby Otis!
It was with a heavy heart that I brought Otis back to the SPCA for adoption on Friday, but I know that every good fosterer must have the courage to let their foster babies go, and to trust that the new parent would provide proper and adequate (if not sufficient) care for their adopted babies.
Otis had a crowd of admirers holding him and cooing at him almost as soon as he arrived. Well, at least he wouldn't be lonely there. He was friendly with the other kittens(a bit too bold, might I add) in the enclosure and affectionate and playful with the humans. What a classic dream cat Otis is. Who could resist his charms? He was adopted almost immediately. The couple who adopted him did not ask for a discount (of the adoption fee, which covers vaccination and neutering) and pledged to keep him indoors and provide for all his needs.
I was relieved that Otis did not have to stay at the shelter, sad to have to say goodbye and sorry for all the other kittens who did not get adopted. To take my mind off the turmoil of emotions I was going through, I resorted to hard labour. I informed Dr. Pushpa that I would be tickwashing all the dogs in Kennels E and F. I went into the Surgery, got the Tactik EC solution ready and hauled my dog-washing kit over to the Pound area.
Roli (The Kindest Man In The World) seemed pleased to see me on a weekday, and we chatted (shouted to, more like) with each other over the din of barking dogs. I leashed, shampooed, rinsed and tickwashed the dogs two-by-two, and treated wounds and sores with Woundsarex. Roli came to help me hold a few of the rowdier dogs so they wouldn't hurt themselves trying to escape.
Some of the pound and forgotten kennel dogs are absolutely sweet-natured and lovable, and I really hope that potential adopters would look beyond their non-pedigree status and adopt these pooches instead. I finished washing, grooming and tick-washing all 20 dogs by 1700h. I had half an hour left, so I cleaned and disinfected the Cattery and cat baskets while Reve cleaned the Front Area of the shelter.
I showered, changed and left the Shelter by 1800h to meet up with my dear buddies Patricia and Larnee at Swensons Ice Cream Parlour in SS2. The traffic was horrible and I came close to tearing my hair out in frustration. I texted Pat and asked them to start eating without me because I was still stuck in traffic behind buses that materialised in front of me out of the emergency lane. Where are the cops when you need them?
I finally arrived and we had a capital time catching up with each other over dinner. The service was appalling but on the bright side, it gave us the opportunity to spend more time together. I learned from this incident that the next time I go to an ice-cream parlour, it would only be for ice-cream. We should always have our dinner elsewhere.
We parted ways around 2200h. Pat gave me a gift of incredibly fragrant and delicious cream puffs from her talented son, Dan. I think our next dinner date should be at Pat's house, with a special order for 30 of Dan's cream puffs. Sure, I'd die fat, but at least I'd die happy. Bring it on, Dan!
Saturday, 3rd October - Sunday, 4th October 2009: Manure Madness and Flowers for Breakfast
Our Malaysian Nature Society Branch Committee decided to hold a Strategy Workshop-cum-retreat at Titi Eco Farm this year, to enable the Committee to work on a 3-year strategy plan for the Society. In retrospect, we chose the right venue. It was so dull and so devoid of distractions that we managed to get the Strategy Plan drafted in a little more than a day. If there had been, say, cable TV with the ESPN Sports Channel, or access to pubs and a snooker parlour, or even just a swimming pool, the Strategy Plan would be swimming with the fishes right now.
In search of something to do outside the main lodge.
Workshop in session: What would our conservation plan be?
Working on the environmental education and awareness plan.
From left: Me, Lili and Seng. There is a rather unsavoury story behind the tiffin carrier.
A very odiferous walk through the vegetable garden. Everything smelled of manure for ages afterwards.
A incriminating shot of Bernie with a long bean.
Yadz demonstrating mad skillz on the rings... NOT!
For the record: I did NOT make the papaya tree fall over. I found it that way.
Can we, like, make the log swing go any faster?
Dinner, with mosquitoes for company. The meals were prepared without sugar, salt or oil. Just the thing for a detention camp.
Welcome to Lili and CovertOps's Retoxification Camp! We will reintroduce caffeine, alcohol, transfats, carbohydrates and salt into your bloodstream!
Lili sliding down what looked like a stormwater drain when drunk at 0200h.
Yoga poses while heavily inebriated at 0300h.
A mind-numbingly healthy breakfast on Sunday morning. Somebody, tell me those flowers are to be put behind my ear?
Sunday, 4th October 2009: World Animal Day at the SPCA
The SPCA World Animal Day Celebrations last year were held at the KL Tower Terrace, thanks to the generosity and kind cooperation of City Hall and other corporate bodies. This year, however, we decided that a small-scale celebration at the SPCA shelter in Ampang Jaya would be just as meaningful.
The SPCA PR team sent out a request for ideas over a month ago, and I am pleased to report that my idea was selected. We would have a candlelight vigil, Volunteer Appreciation Awards, and a pledge ceremony. I drafted the pledge within 20 minutes of being requested to do so, and was surprised to find that it had been adopted verbatim.
I managed to stop by the Shelter on our way back from Titi Eco Farm, and was glad that I could join in the later half of the celebrations, even if I could not arrive in time to receive my appreciation award. I was gratified and touched to see the candles lit for the departed animals and the number of pledge cards signed and taken home.
Candlelight vigil for departed animal companions. May we meet again at the Rainbow Bridge.
Sombre faces: Jacinta and I, after lighting our candles.
Cindy signs her pledge on the World Animal Day banner, while TeckWyn and Cerys look on.
Nicole was kept busy selling SPCA merchandise and collecting signatures for the UDAW Petition
Pris registering applicants for free Klinik Kembiri spay/neuter vouchers. For more info on the low-cost spay/neuter clinic, please click here.
Please take the World Animal Day 2009 pledge!
1. I pledge to look after, protect and provide for all animals under my care; to arrange for alternative caregivers whenever I am away and to find solutions for boarding and rehoming should I find myself unable to care for my companion animals any longer.
2. I pledge to vaccinate and neuter my companion cats, dogs and and small animals (e.g. rabbits and hamsters) and to educate my family, friends and co-workers on the importance of vaccination, neutering and obtaining necessary licenses for one's companion animals.
3. I pledge to gently advise neighbours who fail to provide proper care for their companion animals, and write to zoos, circuses, theme parks and other facilities that keep animals, in the event I witness any acts of neglect, ill-treatment or cruelty. If my advice should fail to bring about positive change in the treatment of the animals, I pledge to report the matter to the SPCA or relevant authorities such as the Wildlife and National Parks Department.
4. I pledge to assist the SPCA and animal welfare groups in finding homes for the animals under their care and advise my family and friends to spay/neuter their existing pets and adopt from shelters and pounds, rather than purchase from pet stores.
5. I pledge to live simply that animals may simply live. I will reduce, reuse and recycle more and use less fossil fuels and chemicals. I will dispose of hazardous materials such as paint, needles and cans with sharp edges carefully. I will use fewer plastics bags, polystyrene products and other materials that may pose a danger to stray animals and wildlife.
6. I pledge to be a more careful driver that I may avoid harm to animals that share our roads and neighbourhoods. I will provide all the assistance I can to animals harmed by traffic and people.
7. I pledge to vote against animal cruelty with my money. I will purchase and use only products that are cruelty-free and which do not cause animal suffering. I will avoid products that are known to have been tested on animals.
8. I pledge not to give animals as gifts unless specifically requested and chosen by the recipient. If I do get an animal as a gift, I will ensure that it will be vaccinated, neutered and given proper care. I will adopt from shelters, pounds and animal rehomers rather than purchase from pet stores and breeders.
9. I pledge to join or support wildlife protection programmes, animal welfare organisations and environmental organisations to educate myself on ways to reduce harm to animals and protect wildlife that are vulnerable to exploitation. Our collective voice and votes can help to change harmful governmental and corporate policies.
10. I pledge to opt for vegetarian food whenever I can. I will go vegetarian at least once a week. I will also actively look for alternatives to leather, suede, fur, honey, silk and ivory.
Happy World Animal Day, from all creatures great and small!