A British national who teaches at one of the schools in Qatar has gone to his hometown for vacation with a special guest.

Philip Roche, the headmaster at one of the schools, has taken along with him a cat he rescued from the streets of Qatar.

While the Qatar Animal Welfare Society (QAWS) is facing closure by next month, this gesture by the teacher has drawn praise.

QAWS, the only animal protection centre in Qatar, has been in existence for more than 10 years. However, it has to vacate its premises by the end of next moth. Gulf Times last month had reported the present situation of QWAS.

Roche said the cat was almost dead when he found it near his house in Qatar. He said the animal, which he has named Mitzy, has now settled down.

He told some newspapers in Britain: “I brought Mitzy back to the UK with me. She is still a young cat and when I found her on my compound she was quite literally dying. However, after lots of treatment and care she has turned into the cat that you see today.”

Stray cats are quite common on Qatari streets and many of them are run over by vehicles. Roche feels satisfied that he was able to save the life of at least one cat.

“Mitzy has settled into her life here in Birkdale and for the most part is enjoying the sunshine although I realise that she is lulled into a false dichotomy as she now feels that it is always sunny and warm!” added Roche.

Efforts to find a new place for QAWS have not been successful so far. Over the past 10 years of its existence QAWS volunteers have rescued over 3,000 animals and provided each one with shelter, medical care and attention before finding them new homes both in Qatar and abroad. Having held hundreds of educational visits, talks and presentations over the years, the organisation has developed close relationships with many schools, universities and businesses.

Speaking to Gulf Times earlier, one of the officials of QAWS had said that the current shelter stood on a privately owned farm west of Doha. The bustling activities and outgrown populations required hiring more farm employees and also causing disturbances in the area - the reason why their lease was not renewed.


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