Nine Lives Aruba Foundation celebrates its 5th anniversary

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(Oranjestad)—The Nine Lives Aruba Foundation, who is in charge of rescuing cats and dogs from the streets, celebrated its 5th anniversary. Even though the organization indicated itself that it has gone through different obstacles during the last few years, it also assured that it has had many happy memories of having the opportunity to improve the lives of cats and dogs on the island.







Nine Lives is a foundation founded by two Americans, Terry Daily and Valerie Purdy Pyeron and Aruban Geraldine Kock in collaboration with volunteers who are dedicated in saving the lives of cats and dogs. They have also promoted humane treatment for animals in order to prevent cruelty and abandonment.

Geraldine Kock, who is vice-president of the organization, explained how the idea to found a foundation for the protection of cats came to be. Terry and Valerie were frequent visitors of the island and have both noticed that people paid more attention to dogs than cats. Though they lived back in the U.S., they were very passionate about their cause. For this reason, they asked Geraldine to manage the foundation in Aruba back in 2015 while they look for donations and sponsorships in the U.S.

Nine Lives works to stop overpopulation and the abuse of especially cats. They pushed for humane treatment of animals and the benefits of sterilizations and castration for the animals. They emphasize that people should sterilize the cats and also offer them refuge and care after finding them on the streets until they are able to be adopted by a new family.

As trappers, they need to trap and collect the cats, but they sometimes let them go too. This is because they often find mothers with big litters, so they often sterilize the mothers but then let them go back to their litters. When Crijojo trappers were unable to house more cats and dogs in their foundation, Nine Lives was founded.

At the beginning, the foundation had 12 volunteers. Now, its family has growth significantly and they have about 80 volunteers in different countries in charge of different areas. For example, some are in charge of the adoptions, other are in charge of garage sales, marketing etc.

The biggest challenge they face on Aruba is the lack of enough donations. The majority of the donations they receive come from other countries. Geraldine stated that Aruba needs to change its mentality, because people often prefer to spend their money at a bar or on other things, instead of helping the foundation.

At the end of 2022, they announced that they have completed 203 cat adoptions; 114 on Aruba, 87 in the U.S. and 2 in The Netherlands. 147 cats were castrated and sterilized, along with 13 dogs.

144 cats were under their care last year, with 21 residing in foster homes, 37 in their refuge and 87 on their Colony Street.

Geraldine assured that the organization was able to meet with Crijojo Trappers, the Luna Foundation, SGT Pepper’s and United Dogs Aruba at the Animal Welfare Alliance Aruba (Awaa), where they established a clinic for sterilization and castration only.

They are currently waiting for more people from the U.S., The Netherlands and England to come to Aruba to volunteer as vets every other week.

Last Saturday, they held their first Adoption Day of this year at a pet shop, where 4 of the 10 cats present were adopted. 2 left with families who have never adopted pets before.

Geraldine says that the importance of adoption is to allow them as an organization to keep rescuing cats and dogs, because these often suffer on the streets due to mistreatment and abandonment. With the organization, these animals can have a “second chance.”