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.

Friday, January 31, 2014

Update: Frieda and Blue

RAPS residents Frieda and Blue were recently adopted by Ann, a member of the cat sanctuary med staff team. These two cuties will be missed by staff and volunteers who knew them from the Old AIDS building at the sanctuary, but it's wonderful to see them enjoying living in a nice home.

The two get along just fine, and Ann says that Frieda has really come out of herself and turned into a playful crazy girl. When I visited last week, both were clearly enjoying all the comforts of home.

inspecting the visitor (and her big camera!)
ready to receive pats
hanging out in a box in between sessions of shred-the-tissue
time to play "swat the cursor"
two-tier cat games
And here's Ann's video response to the question: "Have Frieda and Blue adjusted to their new home?"

Answer: Oh yes.

Friday, January 24, 2014


Gregory is a somewhat shy but still friendly boy from the back left pen the sanctuary.

The back pens are often home to ferals who like to have a place where they can be close to their cat buddies but not too close to human activity. Gregory was put in a pen when he first arrived as it was impossible to tell how friendly he'd turn out to be. By the time RAPS staff realized he liked people, Gregory had gotten comfortable in his new home and gotten to know the other cats there, so they decided he's be happiest staying where he was. Visitors to the pen often ask who the friendly black cat is and wonder whether he's supposed to be in there or just snuck in from another part of the sanctuary.

Gregory in a cage in the doublewide after being at the vet for a dental
enjoying a chin scratch
Gregory and Dell sharing rubs with each other and their human visitor

Friday, January 17, 2014

Update: Precious

When I started my feeding shift in the doublewide on Monday evening, a very friendly black kitty I hadn't seen in there before approached me with a cheerful request for attention. She seemed familiar, but I just couldn't place her.

She turned out to be Precious, who arrived at the sanctuary last summer. She'd started off in the Connor building, and last I heard she'd been moved to one of the back pens. But Precious just loved people so much that staff decided she's be happier in the doublewide, where there are a lot more opportunities for her to spend time with staff and volunteers and make friends with visitors passing through.

Precious wasted no time in renewing her acquaintance with me, running up to me meowing to say hello, then weaving, rubbing, and reaching up to pat my legs. She truly does love spending time with her human friends.

Monday, January 13, 2014


Teddy came to RAPS as one of a number of older feral kittens. He was the first one of the bunch to purr, so for a time it seemed like he'd become friendly with people. But instead he regressed and never really did get totally comfortable with people.

He did love his Mario though, and could often be seen sleeping with him. Here's a photo of the two of them that I originally posted in 2009.

Mario and Teddy
photo provided by RAPS
Now Mario has passed away, and Teddy really misses him. Leslie hopes he'll find a new cat friend to spend time with, as these days he spends too much time sitting by himself and looking lonely.

In the mean time, she's been spending time trying to draw him out with treats and quiet pats. Luckily, Teddy does sometimes allow a little human contact if approached slowly and not made to feel anxious. Tonight he let me stroke his head and give him chin scratches. After a little while, he even purred.

With a little help from staff and from our kitty comforters, who work with cats at the sanctuary who need a bit of extra help trusting people, Teddy might just accept a little human friendship into his life.

Friday, January 10, 2014

Whiskas Gideon

Whiskas Gideon is another cat who came to us via fellow rescue group VOKRA. He'd been hanging around a family's home for a number of years and they'd been putting food out for him. If I've got the story right, it sounds like a neighbour wasn't as delighted to have a stray cat hanging around, and so the people hoped to entice the shy kitty to live in their heated garage... but he just wasn't comfortable staying in there.

VOKRA helped trap him, and a trip to the vet revealed he's FIV positive. This meant he couldn't be allowed to continue roaming around the neighborhood. Since he'd rejected the idea of living in the family's garage, RAPS was asked to take him in at the cat sanctuary.

When I first met him, he was still in a cage while he adjusted to his new surroundings. He was very shy, and while he allowed me to stroke him, it was obvious he wasn't comfortable receiving attention from a stranger. He did readily accept his dinner plus any treats I gave him, though, and ate while I was sitting there.

A week later, I found him out of his cage and settled down in a nice comfy chair. He's still not entirely sure how much he wants to be my pal, but he's already looking a lot more comfortable with his surroundings.

Monday, January 6, 2014


Norman came to RAPS via fellow rescue organization VOKRA (Vancouver Orphan Kitten Rescue Association). VOKRA had brought him in as a stray and discovered during the routine veterinary exam for new cats that he was FIV positive. They would have liked to give him a foster home where he could be the only cat, but found him to be a bit too nippy to be a good candidate for a placement. And so they asked RAPS to help, as the sanctuary has facilities for cats with FIV -- friendly or not.

Once Norman settled in at the sanctuary, he showed himself to be a sweet, friendly boy. The nipping may have been a symptom of initial stress in a new environment, which he got past. With any luck Norman may find himself able to go to a foster home after all.