Feeding the Cats
While the cats receive food from the monks, it usually consists of steamed rice, fried vegetables and meal leftovers, including noodles and spicy Khmer food. The quantity is quite limited and, more problematic, the diet is definitely not adapted to cats.
To improve their daily food intake, Josette provides them with a mix of dry and wet food, usually purchased in Siem Reap supermarkets. It is a heart-warming experience to see all the kitties eating together.
She benefits from donations from generous individuals who donate pet food to help the kitties. Some others give small amounts of cash for her to purchase cat or dog food. Every donation helps to improve the daily meals of the pagoda dwellers.
Fully equipped clinic set up at Josette’s home solely for the pagoda cats, where injured cats and kittens are treated and where sterilizations are made by visiting volunteer veterinarians.
Before and after treatment at the clinic, some cats require to be quarantined to prevent them from contaminating other cats and to avoid hurting themselves by being overactive. They usually stay for a while at Josette’s home – also called “The Cats Health Spa”- until they are fully rehabilitated.
Treating the cats on the spot
Every morning, Josette is providing daily care to the cats and kittens. The basics of treatment for common ailments affecting the kittens include:
- cleaning the eyes of the kittens which suffer from eye infections
- cleaning their ears for those with ear mites
- treating them against parasitic worms once a month
- treating them against fleas and ticks
- cleaning and treating wounds (bites, scratches…)
Josette is collaborating with volunteer veterinarians and the few veterinary professionals now established in Siem Reap, asking them to come to the pagoda to treat more serious cases.
An important part of Josette’s mission is to sterilize the pagoda cats. She feels blessed to have a number of volunteer veterinarians from all over the world giving their time and skills to spay and neuter as many cats as possible during their stay in Siem Reap.
As of November 2016, a total of 95 cats have been sterilized…
Another key element of Josette’s mission is to encourage the adoption of her pagoda cats.
Since the beginning of Siem Reap Pagoda Cats, 49 cats have been adopted from Wat Athvea, and 32 from Wat Po (as of November 2016). A wonderful outcome, considering the transient nature of Siem Reap’s expats community!