RAPS is short for Regional Animal Protection Society, a registered charity and operator of a sanctuary which houses and cares for nearly 500 homeless or abandoned cats in Richmond, BC, Canada. The Neko Files is a celebration of the sanctuary and all those who live and work there.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011


I first noticed Sally in the spring of last year, a pretty calico who could often be found sitting in the window of a small building in the back courtyard. The few times I tried to touch her, though, I would be met with the sort of cringing and expression of wide-eyed horror that are generally meant to signal a cat is not friendly and is about to either run away or get out the claws.

Fellow volunteers Kim and Ayako had a similar experience, until one day Kim discovered an interesting thing: Sally actually likes to be petted. It may have been because Sally had a chance to get used to Kim, but Kim managed to make contact and was quickly rewarded with a solid purr and a tail in the air.

photo by Kim

photo by Kim

When Kim brought me over to see this, we found Sally hanging out on a shelf hidden behind a blanket - again, not a place you'd expect to find a kitty who wants to be found. But Kim had only to stroke her head and pat her back at the base of her tail a couple of times before Sally was purring away, clearly enjoying the attention. I tried as well and even got Sally trying some headbutts, although this was seemingly newish territory for her, as she became a bit uncertain after the first few bonks and switched to looking perplexed and smacking me instead.

I found out from Leslie afterward that Sally and her shy tortie sister Soleil were both trapped at a Richmond automotive garage. They were both feral, but were being fed while they were there, and so had become at least somewhat used to humans.


  1. I think she's neat! First time I saw her she hissed and spat , but Leslie assured me she was a nice kitty. And gosh darn it she is!!

  2. Thank you! I've been petting this kitty that hides behind the drape for ages and didn't know what her name was. Cool that she is Soleil's sister too. :)