Ashwati is looking for adoptive homes for five naughty felines. All the five are lucky to be alive today, says Sriya Narayanan

Ashwati Michael believes that a cat is the world’s best listener. When Ashwati, who works in the editorial division of a multinational company comes home after a long day at work, she is greeted by her cats who scamper around and urge her to play with them, before one of them falls asleep on her hand. “Once you have a pet, it is like having a baby” says the large-hearted Samaritan who plays mother to five rescued pets and recently rescued five more kittens from certain death.

Says Ashwati, who is looking for adoptive homes for these five naughty felines – “Having cats enhances your life so much. They are sensitive to your moods. They snuggle up on your clothes when they miss you, follow you around when you are sick and have such eccentric quirks and distinct personalities, just like people”.

The first kitten Shifu was rescued from inside a garbage bin in Besant Nagar. The second, Tiny Tot was rescued by her friend Shivali after nearly being run over. The third, Mowgli, was picked up by Ashwati’s sister Noora when she saw him resting under a car tyre and a passerby picked up the kitten and almost flung him into oncoming traffic.

The fourth, Eidee was stuck in a drainage pipe in the building when the children in the neighbourhood found her and rescued her. And she rescued the fifth, Zoozoo, when someone abandoned him in a shoe-box outside a colleague’s apartment at the tender age of ten days, his eyes still unopened.

Ashwati who recently moved to Chennai says that she knew no one in the city at first, but her friendships quickly blossomed when other compassionate people reached out and helped her nurse these rescues back to health and supported her efforts at finding them adoptive homes. “Cats are so easy to maintain”, she says. “If we give them food and litter, they basically take care of themselves. And they are cuddly and full of joy”. She recalls being deeply moved when her mother sprained her ankle badly, and the cats sat around her and watched over her constantly, even skipping meals during this time.

She finds that their silent, relentless affection is a boon, be it at homes with children or for those who live by themselves – “They teach children how to share with their playmates. And when I was living alone, and I was just cooking something, I had someone for company. They are such good sounding boards!”

Today, Ashwati’s wish is that these five gorgeous and spirited survivors find human companions who will return their warmth and loyalty. “Cats expand the love in your life”, she says, speaking from experience. “And the love just multiplies manifold”.

To adopt one or more of the kittens in this story, call 9962274306. Eidee, Mowgli and Zoozoo are four months old. Shifu and Tiny Tot are eight months old. (Seen in the picture are Eidee and Zoozoo).

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