Don’t dump your pets because of virus, says activist


  • Metro News
  • Thursday, 09 Apr 2020

Fairservis with several rescued cats at feeding time.

PEOPLE should not abandon their pets as there is no evidence to suggest that cats, dogs or any other pets can transmit Covid-19, says Cat Beach Sanctuary founder Teviot Fairservis.

“This is stated in the World Health Organisation’s (WHO) Q&A section so I am hoping that people will not dump their pets over this baseless fear.”

Fairservis, 65, added that there are more than 300 cats at the ‘no kill’ beachside sanctuary in Teluk Bahang and the felines do not wander far off and tend to stay in the vicinity.

“Because of the movement control order (MCO), volunteers and visitors have stopped coming here and food for the cats is fast running out.

“I am appealing to cat lovers to donate food to us by ordering online via Shopee, Lazada, Sunshine or Tesco.

“The donations can be sent to 778, Jalan Teluk Awak, Teluk Bahang, 11050, Penang.

“We also need a lot of newspapers to keep the cats clean. Call me (017-5753419) and I can arrange to pick up the newspapers from your home, ” she said.

The sanctuary needs at least RM30,000 a month to operate.

Cats relaxing at the ‘no kill’ Cat Beach Sanctuary in Teluk Bahang. Both this shelter and Meowy Cat Shelter  in Balik Pulau are in need of funds.Cats relaxing at the ‘no kill’ Cat Beach Sanctuary in Teluk Bahang. Both this shelter and Meowy Cat Shelter in Balik Pulau are in need of funds.

Those interested in the cat sanctuary can visit the Cat Beach Facebook page (facebook.com/catbeachpenang) or catbeachpenang.com) for more information.

Fairservis also reminded the public that abandoning a pet is animal cruelty and under the Animal Welfare Act 2015, offenders can be fined between RM25,000 and RM100,000, jailed up to three years, or both, upon conviction.

“We need to be responsible for all living creatures and the environment around us.

“Feed and care for strays in your neighborhood, especially in this challenging time.”

Cat Beach Sanctuary was started in 2014 by Fairservis, an American from Connecticut.

She taught English in China, Thailand and Laos for about 10 years before coming to Malaysia.

“I have always been an animal lover.

“When I was about 10, my cat gave birth to a kitten on my bed and that was a profound moment for me.

“For me, animals are teachers as they’ve taught me about kindness and happiness, ” she said.

Another shelter in need of donations is Balik Pulau’s Meowy Cat Shelter which mainly takes in kittens as well as cats that are sick or injured.

For more information, go to www.facebook.com/meowycatshelterpenang

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