Highgate cat rescuer promises annual fast to protect animals

03:29 PM October 6, 2022

A Highgate cat rescuer has pledged to hold an annual four-day sponsored fast to raise awareness of the ‘barbaric’ dog and cat meat trade across Asia.

Donna Lewis, who ran a cattery until very recently, will not eat food for 100 hours to raise money for No To Dog Meat (NTDM), a charity dedicated to rehabilitating those who work in the brutal and to stop the cruelty involved.

Donna and her colleague Sarah Furlong fasted for a total of 96 hours in June, raising £2,300 for the animal rights charity.

The purpose of the fast was to highlight the inhumanity of the annual Yulin Dog Meat Festival in China’s Guangxi region, which is held on June 21 each year and results in the death of 10,000 to 15,000 dogs, in plus cats and other animals.

The pair can only consume water and clear soup during the challenge.

Donna Lewis’ step-granddaughter with Lilibet the rescue bunny
– Credit: NTDM

Donna, who has worked in the animal rescue business for more than 30 years, learned about NTDM and its campaign to end the cruelty of Yulin in 2020 after seeing a social media post from the group The Fellowship of Ravens based in America.

“We first participated two years ago after seeing online that the Crow Community was fasting for 96 hours to raise awareness of Yulin, as that is often the time poor animals have to go without food and water. ‘water,” Donna said.

“We raised £1,800 for NTDM and this enabled them to buy a new van for a volunteer in China who works to negotiate the release of animals for the meat market.

“Sarah and I are huge animal lovers and feel very passionate about the welfare work being done to stop Yulin once and for all. Thanks to NTDM and other charities, the festival is getting smaller every year.

“This is absolutely barbaric and tragically the animals killed in the market are often pets that have been stolen from people’s homes. Next year we will increase our fast to 100 hours and hope to harvest even more money for this really important cause.”

  Donna Lewis with Old Boy, an 11-year-old rescue cat.

Donna Lewis with Old Boy, an 11-year-old rescue cat.

– Credit: NTDM

Julia de Cadenet, Managing Director of NTDM, said: ‘Thank you very much to our wonderful ‘cat ladies’ Donna and Sarah, who have made an enormous ongoing effort for the charity.

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