This made my day: Muslim man uses 80% of his salary to take care of stray dogs and cats

PHOTO: Facebook/Heart:Helping Animals Rescue Team

To some, he's Dr Roslee Abbas, a devout Muslim well-versed with both the Quran and the Hadith, as well as a full-time senior lecturer at University Malaysia Sabah with a doctorate in social psychology.

To others, he's the man behind Heart: Helping Animals Rescue and pours all his efforts into rescuing and rehabilitating stray animals, including dogs.

Even though his day job has him occupied from dawn till dusk, six days a week, Roslee spends another seven hours daily driving around Kota Kinabalu just to feed over 60 stray animals, reported Sin Chew Daily.

As Heart: Helping Animals Rescue Team is a non-profit organisation, Roslee revealed that he spends an average of 70 to 80 per cent of his salary to pay for the animals' food and medical expenses.

"Thank God, I haven't starved to death after so many years," he said.

The 55-year-old was driven to help stray animals after he saw how his neighbour neglected their dog, which later ran away and was hit by a car. Roslee later adopted the pooch, raising it along with other rescued cats in his house.

Roslee recounted his mother's words: "Everything was created by God, and no one has the right to take away any life."

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For the next 20 years, he has dedicated himself to saving animals. After studying the Quran in-depth in order to prevent any accidental faux pas, he realised the religious text only mentioned that dogs' saliva contained bacteria and viruses and hence the need to wash oneself after coming into contact with it.

As soaps containing traditional ingredients are now readily available everywhere, Roslee says it's not an inconvenience for him.

He also pointed out how the Quran encourages people to be kind to animals and in certain stories, even encourages them to treat stray dogs kindly.

In fact, he once buried a dead pig by himself. He was on his way home one day when he saw the animal getting run over by a vehicle. Without hesitation, he carried the pig to a nearby forested area and buried the carcass there in hopes that no other cars would hit it.

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On Facebook, Roslee detailed each of his rescue efforts in hopes of being able to influence others to love stray animals, as well as to spread awareness amongst the public.

"Apart from letting other Muslims know that there's nothing wrong with saving and loving dogs, I also wanted to let non-Muslims see that Muslims don't actually hate dogs."

rainercheung@asiaone.com