Aleppo’s ‘cat man’ a ‘pawsitive’ force in war-torn Syria

Aleppo’s ‘cat man’ a ‘pawsitive’ force in war-torn Syria
Mohammad Alaa Aljaleel with his cats in Aleppo.
Updated 14 May 2017

Aleppo’s ‘cat man’ a ‘pawsitive’ force in war-torn Syria

Aleppo’s ‘cat man’ a ‘pawsitive’ force in war-torn Syria

JEDDAH: Those who have little, give the most. This is the case with the Syrian “cat man” who turned his house into a shelter for stray cats in war-torn Aleppo.
Unlike many Syrian families who fled the country after war broke out, Mohammad Alaa Aljaleel, 42, chose to remain and take
care of the less fortunate felines affected by the war.
“I’ll stay no matter what happens. Someone who has mercy in their heart for humans, has mercy for every living thing,” said Aljaleel.
Aljaleel once had six or seven hungry critters, but soon the tribe grew to 170 in no time, where he built a sanctuary in 2015 and named it after his first cat “Ernesto’s House.”
Aljaleel is known as the “Cat Man of Aleppo” for caring for his feline friends, protecting, feeding and keeping them as healthy as possible.
Although cats had the lion’s share of Aljaleel’s care, children were also recipients of his kindness, as he used to open his house to schoolchildren who come to visit the sanctuary.
“All the schools and the children used to come and visit the sanctuary,” he said. “They would see the huge amount of cats that were left behind by their owners.”
Ernesto’s House was also targeted by bombs, which hit his town in November turning it into rubble, Most of his cats perished.
He was forced to flee the city with a handful of survivors.
Aljaleel was stubborn enough to start over and rebuild his shelter again from scratch.
Aljaleel shares his daily routine with his fur-babies on his Facebook page, which has gained followers from different countries around the world.
According to NBC News, some people in Spain and the United States have donated money and started fundraising campaigns to help him out with his new sanctuary.
The inspiring story of this Syrian man who, somehow, could overcome his loss to help the helpless affected his personal life. He ended up separating from his wife as the pressure grew between them as a result of his endeavor.