Archives Orhaniye Cat Shelter
Orhaniye Cat Shelter
Orhaniye Aug. 2001 - November 2003
I am sorry everyone, since moving to Orhaniye,
there has been no update to the site 2 years!!!
Where does the time go when you are having
It's been a very mixed 2 years. Impossible hard
due to the location in the mountains, no access
road, only a good descending goat track getting
15 kg bags of cat food down and equal amounts of
waste out. It's been very hard to work alone,
and work alone I had to, because it was too far
and too difficult for people to come to help.
Electric and water has been unpredictable. But
the place is absolutely beautiful. Upper goat
bay its called... layers and layers of various
shades of greenery.... breathtaking if it hadn't
been for the food, the land was too small (1,700
sq. meters) and the locals hating the idea of a
cat shelter in their midst it would be a
paradise for the cats.. When the sunshine and
everything blossoms, the work for the day
surprisingly is finished and the cats have
enough food, one has a great feeling of hope.
On the other hand, during the winter, rain,
black skies, no electric, roof leaking and you
don't know where the next days cat food is
coming, and you are alone!!! Then there is
ORHANIYE'S FOREST FIRE JULY 2003
On the afternoon of the fire I was busy in the
house when I noticed an unusual lighting shining
on the windows - thinking it was some kind of
eclipse I went outside . . . there's no way you
could begin to understand the shock and horror
when faced with a blazing mountain side in the
lower end of your valley even now 6 months later
I couldn't adequately explain my feelings at
that time apart from numbed blind panic and the
feeling of total HELPLESSNESS at the hands of
nature at her worst!
Click here for photo album
The wind was so crazy that day, changing
direction every minute the fire completely out
of control was hopping all over the valley and
within minutes it was above us and 15 minutes
later it was behind us.
It was impossible to catch and remove 250 cats.
Under normal circumstances it took us about 18
hours to transport the cats from the old shelter
to the new one here in Orhaniye. There is no way
that I could let the cats free to find their own
way out with the fire closing in on all sides.
We just huddled together and waited. I couldn't
leave them. Friends tried to persuade me to get
out - I couldn't!
After more and more firefighters came into the
area and people and their homes were out of
danger, a few local men of the Jandarm came and
helped to cut trees around the shelter and wet
what they could with what little water there was
in the stream.
Even with this inadequate help, these men gave
me comfort and hope - I couldn't thank them
The fire came within 150 metres of the shelter
before it came under control. The firefighters
and helicopters worked non stop for 3 days
before the horror was over.
It's something I pray to God that I never have
to live through again and through this
experience I now have some good ideas for the
new cat shelter for fire defense.
Having found a new place to rent in Orhaniye, we
had then to solve the problem of housing and
securing the cats. Once again, our Karin Potter
from Germany and animal society Hilfe fur Katzen
in Not E.V. raised more than 10.000 DM to pay
for the new houses, fencing and posts. Karin
since then is still fundraising to find the
money to buy land for the cats themselves. If
you can help please contact Karin by email.
The place in summer is a Paradise but winter was
another story and in the end we need a place of
our own where we can let the cats be free and
not behind bars. This is our last chance for
peace and security. Please help all you can.