posted by Michel on Nov 22

At long last, we got enough donations to get started in earnest with our Kalibo Airport Cat Project that had been on the cards for quite a while. Not only did we have funds, but two EXCELLENT and very dedicated Dutch volunteers, Sanne op den Kelder and Bernard Koenen, offered their invaluable services. Although the cats were our primary targets, we would address whenever necessary and possible, the plight of dogs also. As it turned out, most of the needy dogs were unrelated to the airport, but were simply found on the streets of either Kalibo or Banga, a nearby town where the Aklan State University that treats our animals, is located. Fortunately, our builders had done their utmost to complete the “clinic” before our arrival, so that we converted it into a temporary cat shelter, since our regular cattery normally reserved for rescued cats would not be able to hold the expected number of guests. With a little ingenuity they were housed in such a way that they could all be cared for. Great work by Sanne and Bernard!

Sanne with a captured cat

Sanne with a captured cat

The airport staff proved to be very supportive of our project and even as I was checking in for my flight back to Manila (Sanne and Bernard continuing the work for 2 more weeks), some stuck their head through the rubber flaps separating the terminal from the cargo bay and enthusiastically shouted “Sir! Pregnant cat here! Come quick!” …

Sanne and Bernard tending a cat in our clinic

Sanne and Bernard tending to a cat in our clinic

One of the folding wire cages (on the left) was later converted to a nursery, because it was found that the slightly bigger kittens were true escape artists and simply wiggled their tiny bodies through the bars.

GM), sarcoptic mange victim

Viper (and in the background: GM), sarcoptic mange victim left to fend for himself in Banga

Dogs like these abound in the Philippines (as elsewhere) unfortunately. Still, there is a lot that we can do to make them recover from this terrible state, as the previous rescue dog Smeagol proves (he’s been adopted). Viper is an older dog however so his progress is expected to be much slower. We’ll certainly keep a good eye on him and make sure he gets all the delicious food he needs!

Cats waiting for a lift home after their sterilisation

Cats waiting for a lift home after their sterilisation

GM, demodectic mange, found in barabgay Andagao not too far from our house

GM, demodectic mange, found in barangay Andagao not too far from our house

GM is the spitting image of Smeagol, but she’s a girl and somewhat older than Smeagol, estimated between 3 to 4 years old. With plenty of good food and medicine, she’s expected to grow back most of her fur and make a good recovery within the year. We’ll keep you posted.

All of the AARRC volunteers

Most of the AARRC volunteers

Our first volunteer Chan Bautista (left) has recruited a number of his fellow students at Aklan State University to be AARRC volunteers. Great work Chan!!!

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