First of 50 railway station cats finds home

By Sophie Hong

A KITTEN has become the first of some 50 cats at the now-defunct Tanjong Pagar Railway Station to find a new home.

Previously looked after by railway workers and Keretapi Tanah Melayu (KTM) tenants, those cats were left behind after the station closed on June 30.

Since then, the Cat Welfare Society (CWS) has been caring for them, with two volunteers going to the station thrice a week with food and water.

"When I was there, the harsh reality of the lives of the stray cats hit me and I was saddened by the situation," said Ms Harvon Goh, 37, a supporter of CWS.

Ms Goh has been fostering the ginger tabby since it was five weeks old, and will hand the now-seven- week-old feline to its owner when he returns from an overseas trip on Sept 16.

CWS is working to sterilise all the KTM cats. Progress has been good, with close to 40 cats neutered, but a few are still too wary of humans to be put on the surgical table.

Ms Veron Lau, vice- president of CWS, said: "We are slowly gaining their trust with regular feedings and interaction."

Besides that, CWS is rehabilitating 20 cats in an abandoned block at the railway station previously used to accommodate railway workers. The block was provided by the Singapore Land Authority.

This is to allow them to get used to human companionship before they can be put up for adoption.

"We will assess them on health and temperament, and on whether they are more suitable to be homed, sheltered or to become community cats," said Ms Lau on the future of the cats.

Those interested to adopt a cat will be able to do so at an upcoming three-month community cat- adoption drive. It is organised by CWS and Pet Lovers Foundation.

Potential adopters will have to fill up a screening form and go through a selection process. A home visit will be conducted for applicants who pass the screening process, and they will also have to pay an adoption fee of $40.

The cat-adoption drive will begin on Sunday and end on Dec 11. For more information, visit www. catwelfare.org or www.petloverscentre.com


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