94 cats rescued from three-room flat in Sengkang

Volunteers on Monday helped clear out the flat, where the cats were living in cramped conditions.
Volunteers on Monday helped clear out the flat, where the cats were living in cramped conditions.PHOTO: COURTESY OF CAT WELFARE SOCIETY

A total of 94 cats kept in decrepit conditions in a three-room flat in Sengkang have been rescued, Cat Welfare Society (CWS) executive director Laura Ann Meranda told The Straits Times (ST) yesterday.

Neighbours of a family in Fernvale Link had made repeated complaints to the Housing Board about the cats - most of which are siamese - kept in the home.

Last week, HDB sent a letter to the mother and son who live in the flat and asked them to remove the animals, Ms Meranda said. ST understands that HDB then roped in CWS and the Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority (AVA).

Pictures and videos of the cats posted on Facebook show them living in a cramped and filthy space.

AVA told ST that it is aware of the cat-hoarding case in Fernvale Link. "As there are alleged welfare issues, AVA is investigating," said the spokesman.

Ms Meranda said CWS is working with HDB and AVA on this case.

"Compared with the Yishun hoarder case, this is nothing (much), but they do have flu symptoms, and some have untreated symptoms like eye ruptures," she said, adding that the cats are not neutered and one newborn kitten has died.

On Monday, members of the community helped clear out the place, and ST understands that there are plans to help the family paint the home and clear out the furniture.

As for the cats, 61 of them are with cat group Saving The Siameses, while 18 are with CWS and 15 are at the vet.

Ms Meranda said the case is the worst she has seen "in terms of numbers in such a small area".

She said that rescue costs will be borne by rescuers and not CWS, but the society will be helping with sterilisation.

CWS will make an announcement on Facebook when the cats are ready for adoption.

"For now, we are checking their condition, showering and letting them settle in," said Ms Meranda.

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Cats kept in decrepit conditions. str.sg/4Ez3

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 28, 2017, with the headline '94 cats rescued from three-room flat in Sengkang'. Print Edition | Subscribe