VERY URGENT – help needed for 59 cats and dogs

Two days ago, my friend, Judy, from Ipoh, wrote me to asking if I could extend some help to this lady, Oei Phaik Imm, aged 64, who lives in Tambun, Ipoh.  Apparently, Imm (as she is known) has been rescuing animals for about 20 years now.  Currently, she has 29 cats and 30 dogs in a shelter that she set up by herself and manages all alone.  At the point of writing the email, Judy said Imm was in very poor health and could barely manage the shelter anymore. 

Yesterday, I managed to establish email contact with Imm and I wrote to ask what help she needed.  Imm said she could not manage the shelter anymore and was very worried about the future of her 59 animals.  She needed, most of all, volunteers to go in to help her with the managing of the animals.  She also needed funds.  I told her I would do my best to raise funds to help her out.  I have contacted two friends who are now trying their best to find volunteers from Ipoh to help Imm but until now, we still cannot find anyone who is able to do the physical work.      

This morning, Judy sent an urgent email saying Imm is on the verge of collapse.  Yesterday, the water supply was cut and there is no water at the shelter.  Imm has been extremely depressed and stressed out due to worry and poor health.  There is no one to look after the 59 animals now. 

I was going to wait for Imm’s bank account no before sending out this appeal but it looks like I cannot wait anymore.  Time is of the essence and I am writing now to appeal for everyone’s help to help Imm and her 59 animals.  

This is what she needs:

1.  Volunteers to go in to help Imm with the 59 animals.  Her shelter is located in Tambun, Ipoh.  Please forward this to your friends in Ipoh.  For further details of the location, please write to me at 

2.  Funds to help her with animal food, bills, etc.  We are already sending her funds as soon as I get hold of her bank account number.   
Updates: <info removed>  (Oei Phaik Imm )
Please follow-up with an email to <info removed> so that your donations can be acknowledged and recorded. 

For further details, please read the emails below:

This is the email from Judy, sent two days ago:

I’m writing to ask you if you know of any animal lovers in Ipoh who are willing to help my friend, Oei Phaik Imm, with volunteer work in her sanctuary for stray and abandoned cats and dogs. I have been going in daily (except for Sat) for the past 3 weeks to help in the cats section, whilst Imm does the dogs section.

Imm is single, and has been rescuing stray cats and dogs for almost two decades. When MBI served her notice due to complaints from her neighbour (she had housed the strays in her home in Canning), she had to evaccuate them and was very fortunate that that proprietor of a hardware shop she frequented offered his orchard for her use. The orchard was in Bercham, it was fine except there was no running water so she had to fetch water daily to the shelter.

A couple of years ago someone told her of a vacant piece of land at the foot of the hills in Ampang near Tambun town. This site was more conducive as it’s nearer where Imm is staying. Imm has sold her Canning home and had moved to a rented house. The suggested site is next to an orchard and Imm could get water for her shelter by having a pipe connection to the orchard. Imm has been running her animal shelter practically all by herself.

In mid Jan this year, I was appalled to see that she had lost a lot of weight. It got worse when she caught the flu and was almost on the verge of collapse. That’s when I stepped in to give my support, accompanying her to her sanctuary every morning to help clean the place and feed the cats and dogs. At last count, she has 30 cats and 30 dogs. My sis has also been supporting her by preparing nutritious meals for her lunch and dinner for over a month.

Imm turned 64 in Jan this year and she realises that she’s no longer as fit & strong as she used to be. Her daily commitments running the shelter by herself has taken its toll, she’s frail and weak and is concerned that should she collapse and either die or be hospitalised, there would be no one to care for her animals. I share her concern as I can’t take on the responsiblity for her sanctuary as I already have 8 cats and 3 dogs, and I’m def’ly no spring chicken, this chook is also her 60s.

Imm now finds it extremely stressful and difficult to continue her work at the shelter by herself. She is all alone and has not been able to find volunteers to help her. I gave her your book this morning and suggested that she reads the last chapter on Wendy. I know Imm loves all her cats and dogs and it’s tearing her apart not knowing what would happen to her cats and dogs should she be no longer able to care for them. I have tried telling her to stay positive, to get back her health, and make a wish that she can live long enough to care for all her aninmals until they die naturally. This is the wish I make for myself that I need to be alive and well for another 10-15 years, we both need to outlive our present cats and dogs.

The shelter needs volunteers who can come in to do hands on cleaning, sweeping the poo and pee, cleaning the feeding bowls, changing fresh water for drinking, burning the rubbish etc. It takes 3 to 4 hours for the two of us to do basic cleaning. I do the cattery and Imm does the kennels. We start off for the sanctuary around 9.30am, it’s only 15 mins drive from Imm’s place in Tambun town. We finish the cleaning and feeding by 12.30pm , 1pm depending on the workload. It will be wonderful if there are extra hands, as the cats and dogs can then get more personal attention and play time.

I would love you to be able to visit Imm’s sanctuary so you can see her needs, and perhaps help her in any way you can.

After receiving Judy’s email, I wrote to Phaik Imm to ask how we can help her. The following are excerpts from her emails to me:

———- Forwarded message ———-

From: Phaik Imm Oei
Date: Thu, Mar 3, 2011 at 2:48 PM
Subject: Re: How can I help?
To: Chan Kah Yein

Dear Kah Yein

Thank you for your reply. I would appreciate if you can find someone to take over my shelter in Tambun, Ipoh. I cannot do it anymore alone. If you could raise some funds to feed the animals it would be great. I would like to talk to you if you can email me your

I have 30 dogs and 29 cats with me. Can you ask for donations for me and if possible somebody to take over the shelter. People who wants my shelter wants me to put my dogs down to make way for their dogs.

I am so happy to hear from you. Thank you very very much.

Kind Regards
Phaik Imm

And two more emails:

Thank you. Judy will be sending her friend this Saturday to take the photos for your blog. I do not have a camera to take the photos and I don’t know how to send them to you. I will hang on to the dogs for a little while longer. I am old and very stressed out. I love animals but I really cannot manage them anymore now and feel like giving up. You gave me a ray of hope.

My Animal Shelter is in a farm nearby in Tambun, I have built a little house there with a toilet nearby. There is a fenced up area for the cats and shelters for the dogs.around. Judy will send you pictures of them this weekend.

I used to help SPCA a long time ago. I do not think I want my animals to be there. Anyway, they are full to the brim. I don’t think that they can help.

By the way, just to let you know, I don’t treat my animals like shelter animals. They are very close to me and I see them everyday. Take them to the vet when they are sick and really love them. I don’t want them to starve or suffer. My heart is very painful too.
Thank you very much.

Kind Regards
Phaik Imm

Although our funds are primarily used to sponsor spaying-neutering and medical treatments for animals, we do make an exception with needy cases (like Meiji, Siti from Melawati, etc.) where I will seek permission from the donors to channel their donations to these cases for food and other needs.

For Imm, we will start the ball rolling by sending her money so that she can buy food for her dogs and cats. The latest email from Judy (below) says the water supply at Imm’s shelter has been cut (the bill has not been paid) and they are coping without water now. Imm needs funds, but more urgently, she needs volunteers to help her out with the daily cleaning and managing of the animals.

I think the immediate solution is to round up volunteers to take care of the shelter and have Imm rest her body and mind for at least even a couple of days.  I fear she’s at the end of her tether.  I spoke to her a few minutes ago, she was just leaving for the shelter.  She sounds really stressed.  Also, she’s been having dizzy spells twice this week.  The water problem is like the straw on the camel’s back.

I will also source for food donations for Imm’s animals. But what she needs most of all now are volunteers who can help out with the daily managing of the shelter and the animals.

If you would like to help Imm, please forward this link to your friends in Ipoh (or those who know people in Ipoh) and help us find volunteers who can go in and give her a hand as soon as possible.

I will post Imm’s bank account no after I have got it from her.  Photos would have to wait until next week. 

Imm is currently in desperate and dire need for help. We empathise with that and will do everything possible to help her and her animals. We hope you will help too.

29 cats, 30 dogs and 1 human are awaiting help.  Please help.  

Please forward this link. 

Thank you.  






2 responses to “VERY URGENT – help needed for 59 cats and dogs”

  1. Devi Narayanan

    My, I really admire this great ANGEL. At the age of 64, fighting hard to bring up her 59 pet babies and she is still concerned only about them and NOT herself.

    One in a million. She has defeated me too. What a shame. Come on people. Learn what "SACRIFICE" is from this angel.

  2. Anonymous

    I hope anyone who read this mail does not just post a comment BUT give some help to Paik Imm whether in cash or in kind.

    I have 11 cats at home and I know things such as old newspaper, old towels, t-shirt, bowls … can be so helpful.

    SO, please HELP with whatever you have or just write to her and ask.

    As for myself, since I live overseas my help will be in cash.

    Let's chip in.