HEIDI: A black Labrador mix who excitedly ran around us and showed us around the port. She waited for us patiently to walk up to her, as if she were an experienced tour guide. She was such a friendly and ridiculously hyperactive (thus hilarious) dog, extremely silly, wandering too close to some cats who felt their spaces were infringed upon. In fact she got smacked on the nose by one kitty when her nose led her too close to the cat. We named her "Spaz". She was happy to be petted, hugged and I was happy to provide her with attention. She sat with us as we looked at the heavy clouds rolled in over the ocean. Another couple caught her attention so I told her to "Go." so she went and ran up to them excitedly. "Oh! Is she your dog?" "No, she's a very sweet local dog..." The woman then explained that the red and blue collars were indications that the dog had been spayed/castrated. On the way back, I raced with Heidi on and off. Back in Singapore I did a search on Flickr for Hydra cats & dogs, and was delighted to find the organisation Hydra Ark helping the local animals and to find out that she was also called "Poopsmith" by another visitor. The day we left she went running through the streets playing with a similar mixed breed dog, but in red, we called her "Loopsy". In contacting Ms. Fagan of Hydra Ark, she explained they were named were Heidi and Tweenie.
The first cat to greet us on the island, a very dominant blue-grey cream tabby of sorts, "pastel" and "bitchy". She smacked other cats when they took her spot or when they came up for attention and to be petted.
The next morning we saw a whole troupe of cats waiting around by a fisherman's boat.
That was silly of me, of course she found the box of cat food in my bag!
Special Issue: White Cats
"Because they have no skin pigmentation to protect them from the sun, white cats on Hydra are subject to skin cancer (squamous carcinoma). Due to constant exposure to the sun, their ears and nose become burnt. You can see them around the island with their ears curled up and burnt. When they develop cancer, their ears and nose develop a black crust. As long as only the tip of the ears is burnt and the cancer is not too advanced, these cats can be taken to a vet who will evaluate whether the affected skin can be removed. When the cancer reaches the nose or extends into the ears, there is nothing to do; eventually the animal will die, unfortunately in a very painful way."
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