Illustration Friday: Pioneer; せんだつ – sendatsu

This is a painting of some of the cats belonging to the feral colony in our area. We feed them every day and take them to the vet if needed. Fortunately, most of them have already been spayed or neutered so we’re just picking up the ones that slipped through the net. I had heard “rumours” of perhaps a British organisation that once a year picked a spot in Spain and rounded up several hundreds of cats for treatment – I never saw them but it was obvious that one single person could not have gone through all the cats around here. And then, on Christmas Eve this year, we bumped into them; we’d noticed for a few days that at one of the feeding points, someone had been moving things around. That the cats weren’t as hungry as they usually are we thought nothing of as holiday makers often come for a week or a weekend and leave out a little something in the yard, but this morning they arrived just as we were leaving and we started talking and they turned out to be a lovely Welsh couple that had been here ten years already, working with Animal Aid International trying to stop the growth of the colonies. They told us that although new kittens come every season, the number of cats had dropped dramatically since they started and although I know that some of those losses were due to the actions of some truly horrible persons I’m still so glad that there are good people in this world too. I don’t know if they were the first ones to help out like this in our area but they must’ve been one of the pioneers, and it was so warming to meet them even when they must’ve been heart-broken – one of their dogs had died just the day before.
When it come to spaying, I’ve only accomplished very little so far, but I feed them and take care as much as I can and I’m happy to say most of them don’t look homeless anymore! In fact, they’re starting to look overweight…;)

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