Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Action: Pulau Ketam abandoned dogs

Update: This rescue mission is now closed. Thanks!

I received this message from Meem yesterday. If you're in Malaysia, or have some money in a Paypal account, please consider helping these furfriends. Meem is a personal friend and 100% trustworthy when it comes to cash and doing the best thing for the pets involved. So is her associate Sabrina who runs Friends Furry Farm, a rescue centre for dogs. Please read on...

About 300 stray dogs were rounded up by Pulau Ketam residents in Malaysia and deported to an isolated island to fend for themselves.

Over half of them are already dead and the remaining ones may not live long. A rescue mission is being mounted and your help is needed.

The residents of Pulau Ketam sent some 300 stray dogs to exile on a remote island where the harsh conditions almost certainly guarantee a horrible death. Of the 300 dogs sent there, more than three-quarters are presumed to be already dead. I traveled to the island with Sabrina Yeap of Furry Friends Farm and managed to save only one dog on this reconnaissance trip. We did see several other starving and dying dogs along the mangrove shore.

I am mounting an urgent rescue mission to capture and transport the remaining survivors back to Sabrina's Furry Friends Farm animal shelter. But time is running out and there might be only skeletons and carcasses left to collect on our next trip. Boat hire is expensive there. It is a tourist area and it has already cost me a few hundred ringgit for boat hire alone, so far. The rescued dogs cannot be transported on the regular ferries.

Almost nobody will lift a finger to help without a fee. This is understandable. The locals are already shaking their heads in disbelief that there are outsiders who want to save the animals they so casually discarded. Instead of pointing fingers and antagonising them, we need their co-operation to help save the unfortunate creatures. In the process, we also hope to educate the islanders on better treatment of animals. It would be an impossible mission if we didn't win their hearts.

If you are unable to help directly, please help by forwarding this appeal to other compassionate folks who you feel might be able to make some monetary contributions.
Apart from boat hire, we need money to buy cages, to pay people to help catch them, to hire land transport to send the rescued animals to veterinary clinics, pay for vet fees, send the recovered ones to the shelter and to feed and house them for life. I can go on!

To donate or help, e-mail TV Smith at or Sabrina Yeap at

Furry Friends Farm
CIMB 1457-000-1182-05-6 (Current Account)
*For online interbank transfer, if it prompts for Recipient ID/Business Reg: Just type in 5766

Contributors from abroad (and Malaysia) can also:

Send by PayPal to

Please retain transaction record / slip for verification and audit purposes.


For info or enquiries:
The Rescue Mission Secretariat at +6012 378 3730 (Janet) or +6012 320 8090 (Zalina)
The Sec's E-mail is (see updates page for info)

Fellow bloggers, you can also help by embedding the appeal poster above to your blog and linking to

We are aware it is a monumental task and appreciate all forms of support, assistance, suggestions, encouragement and your prayers.

Thank you and don't forget to view the pictures of the dogs in order to appreciate their plight.


Ellen Whyte said...

News From SPCA Selangor
For release on Thursday, 15th Feb 2009

Dear Friends,

Thank you for the overwhelming support for our work on Pulau Ketam, and our rescue and relief efforts at Pulau Selat Kering for the helpless abandoned dogs. This is a quick e-mail update on our first rescue & relief effort on the 6th of May, 2009. We are so touched with the response from the public and media for the dogs during their time of need – funds have been pouring in, and donations of dog food, cages and other supplies have been arriving at the animal shelter since yesterday afternoon. Volunteers with a variety of skills have also contacted us, offering their help – an animal communicator and reiki healer, boat owner, vet, bloggers, and many experienced dog-handlers and rescuers.

Our immediate concern is to provide food and clean drinking water for the 100-200 dogs daily. While we attempt to recover as many dogs from the island as possible, we are also in the midst of formulating a long-term strategy to address the staggering stray dog population on Pulau Ketam – involving mass sterilization and an educational campaign for the villagers on responsible pet ownership and the importance of neutering to prevent unwanted litters.

Day 1 : Rescue & Relief @ Pulau Selat Kering

The team consisting of Animal Inspectors Cunera, Murugan, Kennel worker Manimaran, Vet Dr Goh and Save A Stray founder Jacqueline Tsang left at 7.30am from Klang towards Pulau Ketam. The team brought along water cans, 15kg bags of dog food, cages, nets, graspers and leashes. Members of the media followed on a separate boat.

From Pulau Ketam (where the stray dog crisis started), the entourage took another boat to Pulau Selat Kering, 30 minutes away.

Cunera, Murugan, and Maran went into the mangrove area and started to feed the dogs with dog biscuits. The dogs rushed out from their hiding area in the swamp and devoured the food hungrily. keeping a watchful eye on the team while eating.

Dr Goh was on hand surveying the condition of the dogs, in case there were any dogs in severe conditions that had to be euthanised humanely. We are aware that we have come under criticism from several parties who claim that we are too quick to euthanise, however the difficult decision is made based on the vets discretion - putting the animals welfare first. Thankfully, none had to be put down – though terribly skinny, they were still active and alert.

The dogs were very nervous, and untrusting – making it almost impossible to catch them. The team could only manage to slowly wade through the mud, with thick branches and roots tripping them or blocking their path. The dogs however managed to scamper away swiftly every time someone came too near for comfort. The rising tide also forced the dogs further inland. Fishermen nearby warned that there are wild boars and snakes on the island too. (Thankfully, we didn't bump into either)

By afternoon, we had managed to only catch 2 dogs. Wowow is a friendly, short black dog. BooBoo is an intimidating looking dog who doesn't trust us one bit. Both are very skinny, and settle down into their cages looking exhausted but grateful. On the trip back, they lie flat on their sides and sleep.

Unloading the two lucky dogs from the van. They are currently cared for at the SPCA Selangor office, while in transit to a fosterers home

BooBoo is really exhausted after his ordeal. Both dogs gobble up a meal of rice, chicken and kibbles in record time.

Lovely Wowow giving us a smile.

As of today, 5 dogs have been successfully recovered – 3 by Furry Friends Farm and 2 by us. We have paid a worker to feed the dogs on Thursday with food we left behind , we hope this regular feeding will draw more dogs towards the fringe of the island.

Lessons Learnt, and Plans for Our Trip Tomorrow

Overall, using nets and graspers proves impossible – using a nylon leash is much faster. The mangrove is slowing down our movement, we will bring a machete tomorrow to help clear away branches and make a path.

We will try using sedatives (mixed into food) and 4 dog traps tomorrow, we hope to bring more dogs back safely. The team will be beefed up a little – Committee Member E-Ching, Inspectors Cunera & Murugan, Kennel Worker Sugen, PR Officers Jacinta and Shahrul, and Volunteers Jorg and Lynette will be going.

A very generous supporter has offered to help us ferry the dogs back and forth on his boat, while the PAWS Animal Shelter in Subang Jaya have kindly offered to provide temporary shelter for some of the dogs rescued in the following days.

We will be bringing more water cans, bags of dog food, and tempting treats like boiled liver and meat strips.

Thank you all again for your support and concern, we hope to update you all again on Day 2 of our rescue and relief work tomorrow evening through our website.

Best Regards,
The Team @ SPCA Selangor

How You Can Help

SPCA and SAS are appealing to the public to contribute to their Pulau Ketam fund, to aid the emergency rescue and relief efforts over the next several weeks. Funds will be utilized to hire boats for transportation of the dogs, purchase dog food, medical supplies and cages. By the weekend, we will update the website with the total funds collected and expenses.

We also appreciate donations in kind – 3’ x 3’ multipurpose cages, dog biscuits and canned food, food and water bowls, towels, water storage containers, and flea/tick spray. All donated items can be sent to the SPCA Animal Shelter in Ampang Jaya.

Donate Online

Please click here to make a donation through our account. Please indicate that the donation is for the Pulau Ketam Project.

Fund Transfers & Cheques

You can bank in the payment to our RHB account (Account No: 2-12273-00021583). Please call or e-mail us at to notify us of your bank-in donation and transaction details.

Please make all cheques to the Society For The Prevention of Cruelty To Animals (please write Pulau Ketam fund on the reverse), and mail to ;

SPCA Selangor

Jalan Kerja Ayer Lama

68000 Ampang Jaya

Selangor Darul Ehsan

Enquiries: 603-4256 5312 (8am - 4.30pm), 4253 5312 (10am – 6.30pm)


If you are an experienced dog-handler, animal rescuer or vet and interested in assisting with the emergency rescue and relief work, or able to foster adult dogs or puppies temporarily, please send us an e-mail immediately at . There are hundreds of dogs that need your help, every bit counts!

SPCA Selangor | Jln Kerja Ayer Lama, 68000 Ampang Jaya, Selangor | T: 42565312/ 42535179 F: 42528382 | |

SPCA Selangor 2009, All Rights Reserved.

Kitikata-san said...

My heart and love go out to you and SPCA for trying to help the dogs.

Anya said...

Goeie aktie van je Ellen:)
Ik zie alleen geen plaatjes dus ik moet nog eens terug komen, ik heb al een paar keer opnieuw ingelogd;)
Kareltje is ook een gevonden kat.
Hij werd waarschijnlijk gedumpt door zijn vorige eigenaar toen die op vakantie ging.
Ze hadden hem uitgehongerd op straat gevonden.
Toen wij in t asiel kwamen vielen we gelijk voor dat magere scharminkel!!!!
En nu is hij te dik hihihi...
(maar nu is hij ziek och germ, hij moest net overgeven, ik hoop dat t snel overgaat, misschien heeft hij van een giftige plant gegeten ,ik weet t ook niet, we wachten maar eens rustig af)
Bedankt voor je purrssss :)

~CovertOperations78~ said...

I'm trying to help set up a taskforce to get vets to volunteer a day each to neuter all the strays at Pulau Ketam. Trying to get the local authorities to agree to let us use premises, manpower, trucks etc. It's very frustrating for all of us, and I salute Sabrina for being the first to come in to help the dogs! SPCA wasn't the first on the scene -- that's the truth. SPCA acted only after receiving phone calls from irate members of the public. Let it be known that Sabrina Yeap and Sherrina Krishnan were the first to respond.


Anonymous said...

Hope all the remained dogs will be saved soon.

And i hope the donation for FFF and SPCA will not stop here.