Social entrepreneur, animal welfare person, beauty consultant and founder, Bodhisattva, an NGO that works for humans and homeless animals. There’s a lot on Mojdeh Arab Farashahi’s plate. The stress and the strains from work all just disappear when she goes home to Moosh, Kuchulu and Langdu jaan, her cats.
With his lovely fur, the grumpy-looking Persian cat Moosh is the eldest. Contrary to his looks, he is actually very calm and truly innocent. The naughtiest is two-year-old Kuchulu. “I was fostering her and she was returned twice. Then I decided to keep her. Langdu was found with a missing part of his hind leg as a kitten and I took him in. He is six months’ old and hasn’t been adopted. Now he is mine too,” smiles Mojdeh scratching his head.
For somebody who works for animals across the city, fostering, looking for homes, finding money to treat animals who are very ill is part of a day’s work. At other times, she is looking for ways to help underprivileged children. So when she goes home, she looks for the Buddha-like calmness that Moosh exudes and the adventurous things that Kuchulu and Langdu are up to.
The house is a riot when Kuchlu gets into her fun mode and Langdu follows. It’s almost like his missing leg isn’t a deterrent. Four years ago, when Mojdeh bought Moosh, her family wasn’t very open to the idea of pets. “Once he came in, everything changed. Now my mother loves him the most, calls him Raja beta and spoils him silly,” grins Mojdeh whose favourite pastime is singing songs about her pets to her pets!
As often as possible, Mojdeh finds time for her chai ritual with the cats in her balcony. “They sit with me and we watch the birds around I still have to swat the younger two every time they want to chase a bird,” she laughs. Contrary to the typical cats we expect, Mojdeh says, “My cats follow me from room to room, come to meet me when I come home and listen when I talk to them. They are not at all bewafa as described by people.”
Under Bodhisattva, Mojdeh looks for ways to pay for the medical costs of treating dogs and cats on the street. It’s something she started doing when she found dogs poisoned in her lane. “I began to help animals and then humans too and thus was born my NGO.”
She calls her cats therapeutic and says: “When I look into their eyes, I only see love. They are my motivation, they make me feel good about myself and help me go on.” Fond of dogs too, she has adopted 18-month-old Nova (a dog who went from foster home to foster home because she would not get adopted) who she houses at a friend’s farm. “Given my work, I can’t give enough time that a dog would require hence I have cats at home. My cats have opened the floodgates for loving all animals in my family. I am thankful for that. I wish I could be with humans like I am with them,” she signs off.
Uma Karve Chakranarayan is editor and publisher of Tell Tail, Pune’s only petzine and partner, Petsworld, a pet food and accessories store. She’s fond of animals and is parent to two mixed breed dogs and a Guinea pig. She also looks after homeless dogs in her area.’Furholics’ appears every Saturday on Pune365.
Uma Karve Chakranarayan is editor and publisher of Tell Tail, Pune’s only petzine and partner, Petsworld, a pet food and accessories store. ’Furholics’ appears every Saturday on Pune365.
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