Sultan stresses compassion for strays

Loyal companion: Snowy at the side of Sultan Sharafuddin as the Ruler performs his prayers. — Selangor Royal Office Twitter page

KLANG: Animal lovers and rescuers are elated over a decree issued by Selangor Ruler Sultan Sharafuddin Idris Shah directing the public to show compassion towards street animals.

For those who spend a large part of their lives and earnings taking care of vulnerable street cats and dogs, the Sultan’s declaration is timely.

In a statement issued by Istana Alam Shah here yesterday, the Sultan and the Tengku Permaisuri Selangor Tengku Permaisuri Norashikin stressed the need for a more humane and holistic manner in handling stray animals.

The royal couple have also urged the people not to overlook their responsibility of protecting stray animals, especially cats and dogs.

“Their Highnesses are both upset and sad that there are individuals and certain parties that inflict cruelty upon these animals intentionally as opposed to knowing how to best protect them, especially during the movement control order period, ” said the statement.

It added that Sultan Sharafuddin’s decree emphasised the importance of showing compassion towards stray animals.

The Ruler reminded everyone that it is a collective responsibility to give them food even if they are in their natural habitat.

Both the Sultan and Tengku Permaisuri are also currently raising several former stray cats they have rescued, neutered and brought home as pets.

“This includes Snowy, a stray cat that came to the Sultan’s residence looking for food some four years ago, which was adopted by His Highness.

“Snowy is currently Sultan Sharafuddin’s favourite pet and His Highness’ loyal companion.

“Apart from Snowy, Tengku Permaisuri Norashikin – who is the royal patron of the Stray Free Selangor (SFS) project by the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA Selangor) – has rescued more than 100 stray cats, of which 30 are being raised by Her Highness and the rest have been put up for adoption, ” added the Istana in its statement.

The Istana also said Sultan Sharafuddin has ordered all local councils to be more proactive and wise in handling the stray issue in a holistic manner, as opposed to painting an ugly picture about them which results in the animals being caught and killed.

The Ruler’s decree came following a recent incident where the Shah Alam City Hall put up a banner threatening to fine those feeding stray animals.

This irked many animal lovers and rescuers who have intensified their feeding rounds during the MCO, given that there will be fewer food scraps during this period for the animals to eat.

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