*from Mainichi newspaper local, January 17th,2012
In December, 2010, a temporary employee (62) in Kasuga-city let 28 dogs die by not giving the food. Munakata district prosecuted this man in Munakata summary court on the 16th. The Munakata summary court imposed a 300,000 yen penalty. According to the indictment, when this man was a pet dealer in 2010, he didn’t give any food to the dogs for 1 month from November 23rd, allowing 28 dogs to die.
Akiko Yui was interviewed by Town News.
Akiko Yui, (56 years old), representing TNR Japan Animal Welfare Hospital, has been protecting homeless cats and dogs, and finding host families for them.
Animal and human, the value of life is the same
After the disaster on March 11th, 2011, she focused on the rescue of animals which were abandoned in the off-limits area near the Fukushima nuclear plants. “The life of animals is the same as humans. It must not to treated lightly.” Turning this passion into action, she entered into the off-limits area with her fellows. She took in 300 rescued dogs and cats. “I wish everybody to know that still so many animals are left.”
Now many owners can’t live with their pets because of temporary house’s regulations. It may not be possible until they get their old lifestyles back. “The pet is one of the family. It is so painful to think of the owner’s feelings after having to abandon their pets.” After cleaning and decontamination of the pets, such as is possible, host families will be found for the rescued dogs and cats. “I want to find host families who have much love and responsibility.”
When she was 35 years old, she visited Yumemigasaki Animal Park, where she saw many homeless cats. “I wanted to reduce the number of unfortunate cats, who die of hunger, or are killed by people.” So she began activities to protect and sterilize homeless cats, recruiting volunteers and soliciting donations. “Personal activity is limited, especially due to our financial situation.” Then 3 years ago, she established the TNR Japan Animal Welfare Hospital. Now the activity of this animal hospital has expanded. “My purpose is zero culling. I want to save as many unfortunate lives as possible.”
”There are so many pets awaiting rescue, including in the crisis-afflicted area. But this shelter is not enough. It is of utmost importance for us to find a new shelter.” She will continue her activity to realize a society in which animals can enjoy safe and fulfilling lives.
TOTAL 391 cats
Dogs; January: 1
TOTAL 55 dogs
TOTAL 235 cats
TOTAL 53 dogs
These rescued dogs and cats are from the public health center and Fukushima. Needless to say, this result is enabled by you who have supported us. I marvel at the importance and value of life. Your support saved 446 lives. You have my deep and heartfelt thanks.
Our circumstances now; Fujimi park shelter: 30 TNR Japan Animal Welfare Hospital: 50 Temporary animal shelter: 30 Pet hotel: 20 Cared by volunteer’s house: 40 Cared by volunteer at outside: 50 TOTAL 220 cats plus 10 dogs. Foster home support for 50 dogs and cats. 100 yen support per day can certainly help the food fee. They are loved by the volunteers, and living a calm life. I have been busy with the rescue activity, and couldn’t make time to find new foster homes. So many cats still haven't found their original owners. After March we will recruit foster families for these long-suffering cats.
I am proud of our rescue activity after the unexpected disaster. Following the rescue, it is necessary to treat, and sometimes operate, for illness or injury. Also necessary is the extermination of fleas, ticks and parasites, plus vaccines, antirabies serum injections for dogs, and sterilization. We have done all of this for all 446 dogs and cats. Again I am filled with gratitude toward all of you who supported the establishment of the animal hospital.
Still now, there are many dogs and cats left in the afflicted area. It is easy to imagine the rescue activity being a long term effort. The medical treatment costs a lot. For example, care of 69 cats which we rescued with Yokohama Animal family last December came to about 1,000,000 yen. We have to keep finding means of meeting such costs.
Also this year, I have to find a place for a new animal shelter. The temporary shelter is packed and it is difficult to receive more dogs and cats now. But we have to find solutions, especially considering the kittens expected next Spring.
I am determined to find a new shelter.
January 16th is the day I had suffered a cerebral infarction. The disaster happened in the hospital during my rehabilitation. I can’t find right word to express the difficulties of this past year. I'm thankful for continuing life. I thank the people who have been supporting me. I will never forget this generosity, and will devote the rest of my life to helping animals.
Katsurao-mura in Fukushima in January
Not so much snow on the road but there is some snow remaining in the shade. Photo 116-1 Photo116-2 A cat stayed put. We gave it a can of food and left some dried food in a place that won’t be a problem for the neighbors.
2 dogs about which the volunteers are worried. There was some food and water. We supplemented the supply with some more.
At the end of the last year, the rescue party was formally permitted to go into the off-limits area for rescue operations. We cooperated with Yokohama Animal Family, and some volunteers in Kanagawa prefecture, for rescue activity.
Time = Life.
The time was limited. Day after day, there was desperate activity.
Miyakoji-mura in Fukushima in January
There is a family who is not evacuating in Miyakoji-mura. They were pleased to show us the dog house which had been prepared by a volunteer. The cats come to this house for the food. We gave food to them.
A dog who always runs away to the hill at the back. There was some food and water already there. We left some snacks.
I have been worried about a dog. It's skinny, and loosing hair. This time we saw a puppy was maybe 4 or 5 months old. This puppy is so fearful. It was born after the disaster, after people left. Must be frightened. We left some food, water and a blanket. We got a call from the owner on January 7th. 4 puppies were born but we could see only one. They don’t know what to do with this puppy. We have obtained permission from the owner to rescue this puppy and it's mother.
Later on January 21st, a volunteer reported that they had been rescued.
The mother dog likes people, but the puppy is skittish. We have to use the capture cage. We made an appointment with the owner at their house, but we couldn’t see their dog. During a visit 3 days ago, the owner didn't allow volunteers to see them. There was a dog's skull from before.
We felt some anxiety, but we found them after we drove for 10 minutes!
We caught the puppy as well.
We brought them directly to the animal hospital, and then I brought them with me.
The owner can’t keep the puppy. We will find a host family after the puppy gets used to living with people. When the mother dog gets back the strength, she will be sterilized. After that, the owner will keep her in their temporary house. But there is still some anxiety.
The dawn in Fukushima is minus 8 degrees. We had left 100 kg of dried food, and plenty of water, around the damaged area by the tsunami. When we came back this time, all the food was gone. The reason is crows. When/if we can get the owner’s request to rescue, we can use their shed, or we can leave an automatic food dispensing machine. But we can’t leave the food there without the permission, and crows are sly, ingenious competitors. It had been full of food, but was now empty. This is a terrible situation for the cats.
We found cats one by one, amidst the rubble, or on the road. We tried to find places safe from the rain, and left the food there. We hope the cats that had run away into the grove will come back and find the food. We left silver- vine powder, (herb with an effect similar to catnip), around the food.
We found a white tabby cat. He/she looks frightened. Must be very hungry but can’t move.
We saw some stark reality in this place as well. It is too sad but I dare to put this photo.
When they get weak, the other animals may eat them. I regret so much that I couldn't come sooner….. A place out of the rain where someone left food. We left plenty of food and water there. We also made a sleeping box with blanket.
I want to rescue all of them but unfortunately ability is limited. I have been looking for a place for a new animal shelter, but it is so expensive in Kawasaki. I can’t easily decide.
I stopped by Fukushima Tamagawa. There are so many relief goods, and they are so pleased at this support. As they are receiving more cats day by day, they wish for a new toilet as well. There are so many people supporting Kawasaki and Fukushima. I am so grateful.
It is only due to the efforts and support of so many people that we can continue this activity. But this rescue activity never ends. I feel stress just continuing to bring the food for the abandoned pets sometimes. I imagine the burden of individual people. It's sad to feel the lack of consciousness concerning our country’s animal welfare.
We have to think of strategies for the long term. For example, when pet food products are disposed of due to packaging damage or change, could the company donate such food? I can’t find the time for this type of inquiry, but if you have any information, please contact us. Even one time offers would be deeply welcomed.
Our abilities are very limited, but we never forget your efforts, which help to realize our activity. We thank you all deeply for this ongoing support