I came back from Fukushima with a cat found lying on the street.

May 16th, 2013

I always want to go back to Kawasaki within 24 hours. But as I need to sleep sometimes, it takes more time. I want to spend more time in Fukushima. But even if I leave kittens to the staff of TNR Japan Animal Welfare Hospital, I still take care of sick cats at my home, and must tend to toilets and food for other cats at home. If I spend more time, like at least 2 days, in Fukushima, I can rescue more cats. But it is difficult to ask someone to take care of so many of my cats.

This time also I couldn’t take more time to leave the capture cages. So I couldn’t capture any of them, even if I saw some cats. And I couldn’t go to all the feeding points.

This cat was lying on the street in Naraha-machi. Very thin and a bit dehydrated. I was worried he/she might not make it, but we arrived Kawasaki somehow. He/she seems around 4-5 years old, and about 1.4kg.

I hope he/she can survive.


The whole town started decontamination. I saw many cars and people. The cars look like they came from Hokkaido, Nagoya, Sasebo... Many people came from all over Japan for decontamination. Restoration of houses has begun.

But what can be done about these small lives? Can no one can hear their cries?

New life in afflicted area – Namie-machi, Fukushima

May 11th, 2013

The residents in Namie-machi can go home only during the day since reorganization. But Namie-machi has been refusing the volunteer animal protection parties. If we could go in, we could proceed with the sterilization, and stop the increase of life doomed to misery. Also we could rescue the cats there. I don’t understand why the governments of Fukushima prefecture and the City can waste life like this.

Before the new life is born, capture them in time.


I hope this cat belongs to the owner of this house.


Moving to another place where I see cats often.


There is so much rubble. In such a ruined place, the starving cats are lured by the smell of the food.


The belly looks big. It may be giving birth soon.


I was worried that she might give birth in the car. As soon as we arrived at Kawasaki, she gave birth to 6 kittens.

Many mother cats have miscarriages because they're so young, (most of them are 4-5 months old) and suffer from malnutrition. It is sad, but all I can do is to save as many as I can. Please consider to accept them as your family.

The surviving cats in Futaba-machi, Fukushima.

May 8th, 2013

Futaba-machi reorganized after 2 years of disaster aftermath. However most of the place will be "impossible-to-return" area.




Even if they wait and wait, no one come for them. Sorrow and loneliness.


We want to save such life by trying to capture them. There is a family who asks me to find their cat. They deeply care about the life of animals and let us use their yard and storage area for our activity. There are no feeding points around, and we captured so many cats in this place. This day, one black and white cat was captured. I want to set the capture cages more thoroughly, but there's never enough time.


The rat’s town

May 7th, 2013

The season turned, and many beautiful Spring flowers bloomed in the afflicted area.




Each time, I see some changes. No matter what, we go back there for feeding if suffering lives are there.



Set some capture cages at the house of an owner who requested protection for their cat.

Leave the food at feeding point, as much as I can.

Then collect the capture cage.

It seems closed but????


Wawawawa, there is a rat.....what am I going to do?!


When this happened before, I released it using gloves, but the rats in this town are huge! Big face! This rat can’t get away from the net, and the face is swollen. What I am going to do?


Then I found a nipper in the garage.


Cut the net strings, one by one, carefully. It was easy to cut.

Good bye!


There are so many big rats in the town. Most of the houses smell of the feces and urine of the rats.

Then the storage in Naraha. I thank you so much for your support. The storage is like this.


The time goes so fast, there's never enough for all the work that needs doing.


This area was damaged by the Tsunami. We saw a few cats there.



We can’t do TNR activity in such place. We can’t take the cat back to the place where there is nothing to eat. We protect them. That’s all.


Naraha-machi is a very beautiful town, with abundant nature. The residents who I know let us use their yard for feeding activity. They all love their town.





Tomioka-machi - decontamination

May 4th, 2013

One day in Fukushima is not enough for the necessary feeding activity. The cats I met today may have only about a 50% probability of surviving until next time. This is why I want to set the capture cages and rescue them. If they don’t get out of here, their chances of survival will be less and less.

So because of that, I set the capture cage and leave for a night. Then take it back the next day. The second day in Naraha. Loading the food (from your support) at the storage.



Put water in the tank.


This yard belongs to a cat owner. Their cat was captured in a neighbor’s yard. But this neighbor’s cat is not found yet. So this owner opened their yard for feeding.

Even when there is a barn, we often set the food box outside. This is because wild animals wreck the inside of barns, and also to avoid the droppings of crows or other birds.



Set and take back the capture cage rapidly.





Decontamination in Tomioka-machi.
It looks like a lot, but is only a part of the grim total.

I don’t see any residents there.



Could reorganizing of the evacuation zone help animals?

May 3rd, 2013

It’s been 2 years since disaster and nuclear power plant accident. The evacuation zones have reorganized, and depending on the area, some residents can go back any time after getting permission.




However, they still can’t live there. The decontamination work starts from now. The residents don’t go there very often, sometimes just to clean, or get something from there.

The cats don’t get regular meals from anyone, and continually have hard life, with much hunger.



Want to protect but.......(Fukushima)

May 1, 2013

Living on low income in my hometown, Yamanashi, I always looked forward to the blooming of the beautiful flowers. The disaster area, Fukushima has many flowers in common with those of our garden in Yamanashi. It brings back memories, and I am moved. But my heart aches as I see the beautiful landscape at my feet turned to a scene of such imbalance.


I found a cat that was looking for food. All capture cages were already set and I don’t have anymore. At least, I want to give some food,

I left food quickly and then moved away. The cat came out of hiding and devoured the food.



I want to share the joy of this lovely moment.


I try to find a place to leave food.
I want you to survive.
I will certainly come back to help.

Feeding activity in Fukushima, April

Feeding activity in Fukushima, April

Pear blossoms in the "impossible-to-return" area.




Such a beautiful town, with such lovely Spring flowers, but no people at all.

A hungry cat runs away.



This flyer was posted by a resident. It is kind and generous to think about the lives of pets other than just their own. We can’t leave food or set capture cages without permission.



~Translation ~
To animal rescue volunteers: Thank you so much for your activities. Our 6 cats and 1 dog were rescued. We are deeply grateful. The cats currently staying in our yard are stray cats and/or neighbors’ cats. If you have enough food, we would appreciate if you could leave some in our barn. We'll be glad if even just one little life can be saved.

However it's also difficult to keep coming to places like this. Our protection activity is done in hiding, so we can’t move freely while waiting for cats to come into the capture cage. We must hide, and wait. Camellia in full glory


This beautiful flower heals me. But at my feet, there are hungry lives and dead bodies. The hungry cats are attracted by the smell of food, and come closer. But its back is so skinny. Some of them are nursing. Even a starving mother cat has to provide milk for her young. How they must have suffered.



There was one kitten. Only one survived?




I went back to the same place, but I couldn’t find the brothers and sisters.

Move to Futaba-machi. This town is still an off-limits area. This kitten was also alone. It seems about 4 months old.


It was so skinny. After the treatment in TNR Japan Animal Welfare hospital, he/she has gone.

If we could have protected them a little sooner, we could have found a host family, and made a happier future. I am too frustrated, no words.

There was a stormy day in April when I went to Fukushima.


At first, I brought the stock of food to the residents in Tomioka who cooperate with us. This food is from your support. Thank you so much.


Actually the rainy day is a good chance to clean, especially the birds’ droppings. We can’t use the drinking water for cleaning, but can use the rainwater. Now we can go into Tomioka. So we can start to clean little by little.

However I can't stop thinking; what am I doing, coming all the way from Kawasaki to Fukushima.




This storm was quite big. My hat is blown away, my rain coat is very thin, and my clothes soaked in water and swollen to 3 times their normal size. The seat of the car was soaked......
And there is no end in sight.......

A mobile clinic for animals is donated to Fukushima.

April 5th, 2013

A mobile clinic for animals is donated to Fukushima.

In the evacuation zone in Fukushima, dogs and cats separated from their owners are naturally breeding and increasing. Doubutsu-Kazokuno kai in Tokyo is worried about a possible collapse of the ecological balance, and donated a car to Fukushima-ken for mobile treatment of animals.

Doubutsu-Kazoku no kai., which is organized by veterinarians in Tokyo, donated the car to the Fukushima Animal Rescue Office. This will facilitate contraceptive operations.

This car has bio monitoring and anesthesia apparatus. It takes about 30 minutes for the sterilization surgery of one dog or cat.

Fukushima Animal Rescue Office is organized by Fukushima prefecture and a veterinary medical association in Fukushima. This office has been accepting dogs and cats that were rescued in evacuation areas. However, natural breeding is causing an increase in the animal population, and it's difficult to capture and accept all animals.

They can treat the dogs and cats in off-limits areas and "impossible-to-return" areas with this car. They are waiting for permission from the authorities to go into these areas. Until then, they visit the temporary housing areas.

TNR activity in Tomioka 2

April 3rd, 2013.

I set 43 capture cages on the first day. It was just a short time to have the cages set, and we didn't get very many cats. I moved the vacant cages to safe places and left them overnight.

The next morning I checked the cages near the client’s house. Vacant cages will be handed to other volunteers who will work on that day. Then I continued the feeding at various points.


Then take all the capture cages back to Tomioka.




On a previous visit I saw a tortoiseshell cat that had a big belly. She didn’t go into the capture cage then, but did this time. Look at her chest, she's nursing kittens. I had to release her. This time I released 2 cats that were nursing. If one cat has 5 kitten, it will be 10 kittens.

This place is a bit better than other areas in Tomioka. The residents will continue the feeding. I hope the kittens grow up well.


The 2 cats that were in the capture cage were unfortunately not client’s cats. They look like they're around 6 months old. I didn’t see their mother. I have to come back to find her.



Toilet time at the meeting place. It was full of plum blossoms.


Hurry up! It takes time to collect the capture cages, but even more time when we do the necessary feeding.








Let’s go back to Kawasaki. I will release them after the health check and sterilization, all of which takes about 10 days.

TNR activity in Tomioka 1

April 2nd 2013

I had many rescue requests from the residents in Tomioka since the town became an off-limits area. But the requests were just too many, and the police control is so strict. I had to be stealthy, and it was so difficult to stop for a very long time for capture work. I just continued protection and feeding activity, hoping to save the lives of a few cats.

The check point has changed. This part of Tomioka had the off-limits restriction lifted, and it's possible to go in between 10:00 and 15:00. I set lots of capture cages, one by one, near the client’s house.







The are so many cages. It is important to record all of the locations, so as not to forget to collect them.


Left so much water.



The meeting place in Tomioka. Since I saw a brown tabby kitten at the garbage site of this meeting place, I kept leaving the food there. But I couldn’t come back often and wonder if the kitten is alive or not. I set 2 capture cages there.



A toilet was set up at each meeting place. I was somehow relieved just seeing a toilet.


Weeping cherry tree.


Activity in Fukushima

The last activity in March.

The activity in Fukushima in the second half of March was arranged by the residents and volunteers in Tomioka and Namie.
I could be in town for only 5 hours. One volunteer from Yokohama accompanied me. We devoted all our energies for as long as time and our strength allowed. Before and after this area, we went to Naraha-machi for feeding.

Cats in Naraha-machi. The fields that had been damaged by the Tsunami were covered with dead grass. But it has been cut, and decontamination is progressing.

It was a warm day, and we saw cats since morning in the tsunami area. Most of the houses were gone. The surviving cats were eating small insects, I guess.

I saw a female tortoiseshell cat. I am depressed to think about her difficult life, and the miserable situation for kittens.

When I set the capture cage, quickly the crows gather over my head. I can’t find a safe place to set the capture cage in this small road between the fields.



Now onward to Tomioka and Namie. These areas will be reorganized and named as impossible-to-return areas. I have no idea whether I will be able to come back to this area or not. It may be my last chance. No time to think, just do my best.

I didn’t see as much cattle as last time but occasionally spotted some. I met a very thin cow and a calf. Why are they so thin? There are so many sprouts there. Maybe they didn’t eat enough in winter. I left some food for them, and they started to eat greedily. I was sad for my powerlessness. All I can do is pray for them.




About Us

Message from Akiko Yui, President and Founder of TNR Japan Animal Welfare Hospital
I believe that helping animals in need, existing in symbiosis with animals, and fostering a loving heart lead to an improvement in one’s character of kindness and generosity. The killing of animals due to decisions made by administration goes against my firm belief in preventing cruelty to animals. Animal Rescue Fund’s most important goal is to reduce the number of animals killed in Japan to zero by urging administration to change, reform, and improve the prevention of cruelty to animals. In order to reduce the number of animals in need, we work to raise awareness and support for the importance of sterilization operations. Each year, we spay and neuter more than 1000 stray cats. We are always putting animals up for adoption to help those lives already born in finding a loving home.

TNR Japan Animal Welfare Hospital:
We first opened our TNR Japan Animal Welfare Hospital in February of 2011 in an effort to make our dream a reality - to lower the number of dogs and cats killed in Japan to zero. At our hospital, we spay and neuter cats to reduce the number of unfortunate stray cats. Our hospital strives to help unfortunate animals in need of medical care.
The lives of numerous pets and livestock were lost as a result of the unprecedented earthquake and tsunami that occurred in Japan on March 11th 2011 and the radiation disaster caused by the stricken Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant. Animal Rescue Fund goes directly to the 20km evacuation zone around the stricken Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant to rescue animals.
Animal Rescue Fund is based in Kanagawa Prefecture’s TNR Japan Animal Welfare Hospital. Therefore, the animals that we rescue from Fukushima Prefecture are brought to TNR Japan Animal Welfare Hospital located in Kanagawa Prefecture. Here, the rescued animals receive medical care and are returned to their owners or are put up for adoption.
We also work in urging the government and administration of Japan to support the protection of animals in need.





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