G Hotel helps SOS to make Penang stray-free, pet-friendly

 |May 9, 2017
G Hotel’s general Michael Hanratty presented a donation of RM1,000 cash to SOS founder April Sham (in yellow t-shirt) and team members during ‘Kibbles Nights’ event at the hotel in George Town.

G Hotel’s social contribution programme helps stray dogs and cats at the Save Our Stray Neutering Society Penang (SOS) ‘Kibbles Nights’ event in George Town, Penang.

SOS is a non-profit organisation that encourages responsible pet ownership by neutering pet to help stop animal abuse.

In George Town, there are much lost, abandoned and unwanted stray dogs and cats in dire need of human interference and help.

Participating in ‘Kibbles Nights’ event is only a small part of G Hotel’s effort in giving back to the community.

G Hotel’s general manager, Michael Hanratty said that the hotel took a personal interest in this programme.

“We care for the dogs and cats and applaud SOS’ mission to save the lost, abandoned and unwanted animals,” said Hanratty.

The hotel hosted the ‘Kibbles Nights’ event and donated RM1, 000 to SOS.

SOS’ founder April Sham was moved to start a small group to care for the welfare of strays in 2012.

As a charity neutering society, SOS works closely with a group of seasoned feeders in Penang to spay as many female dogs and cats as possible.

The group’s mission is to neuter to prevent unwanted pregnancies and the birth of street animals which are subjected to abuse and cruelty.

SOS has a Spay Neuter Assist Programme (SNAP) which subsidises 50 percent of the spaying fee for eligible feeders and for low-income feeders; the subsidy is a full 100%.

Trap Neuter Rehome or Release (TNR) is a practice where SOS members actively source suitable homes for the countless homeless puppies rescued by kind Samaritans daily.

“At SOS we make it a point to never say no to the helpless voiceless animals in dire need,” extols Sham, who toils tirelessly with her dedicated team for the welfare of strays in George Town.

Although SOS is not an animal shelter, close contact is maintained with other shelters to help each other out for the welfare of the strays.

Most shelters are considered by people as a dumping ground for their unwanted, sick or old dogs and cats.

Some poor animals are simply abandoned by irresponsible owners who could not care for their pets anymore.

In a closed, contained environment, more breeding occurs and in turn, the stray population grows.

Shelters in George Town are filled to the brim with acute with shortages of food, finance, maintenance and medication.

If there is an outbreak of contagious disease, this will affect and kill many dogs and cats.

“SOS believes in getting to the source of the problem and practises mass neutering as the only solution,” added Sham.

Although SOS is not a rescue team, through their contacts and network, members share and help to co-ordinate many emergency cases to provide medical assistance for strays that have been hurt in road accidents, are abused or sick.

The team’s coverage is the whole of island part of Penang, with a record of over 3,000 dogs and cats spayed in the past five years.

SOS aims to open their own spaying clinic and hopes to work with international NGOs to obtain international aid to fund their mass neutering programmes.

It hopes to obtain government support to open avenues for the relocation of strays inhabiting high-risk areas in George Town.

The public can donate via the SOS Facebook page, WhatsApp groups and during their annual Straits Quay Christmas Charity Bazaar.

‘Kibbles Nights’ are organised to distribute food from donors directly to the feeders monthly.

SOS is on the lookout for new ‘Kibbles Nights’ partner each month that will sponsor and host the event.

Interested parties may contact them on the SOS Facebook page.

With an earnest aspiration to make Penang a place that is stray-free and pet-friendly, SOS continues to work tirelessly to inspire others to be kind to animals.

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Doris Lim is a Malaysia Outlook contributor with a keen eye for details developed form her background in architecture and design. Her affable personality and passion to celebrate life is captured in her stories of the community. Doris’ love for all things beautiful and quirky is tempered by her love for writing, photography, food, art and travel.