Info Flash N°16

December 2014

Nos Amis Les Animaux 85480 is a registered association (W852002671/SIRET 538 773 193 00015) for the protection of animals. Often called simply NALA we have members of many nationalities but mainly English and French.

We were set up in September 2010 and since then have placed about 215 animals, mainly cats, with loving, new owners. We have obtained the French equivalent of charitable status so that donations are tax-deductible.

Top stories for this month:

  • Getting Heavy 
  • Pepito
  • Protest Walk in Bournezeau
  • Sacha ...
  • It's Christmas time
  • Our Bedwarmers Looking For a Good Home
  • Program 2015
  • Come and join Nala; together we are stronger!

Getting Heavy 

Sometimes we have to ask ourselves what the heck is going on in France. In the beginning of November the FNSEA (National Federation of Agricultural unions) organised a day of protest. Amongst the targets of their complaints were EU regulations on competition (they want to be protected against imports from other EU countries), EU regulations against nitrates and the "greening" of the agricultural policy.  Another of their claims was for more EU subsidies to cope with the Russian embargo.

So, on the one hand, they want EU money but, on the other, they don't want to comply with EU regulations. "But, what", I can almost hear you exclaim, " does this have to do with NALA?"

Well, in addition to their traditional pastime of spreading muck and dumping fruit and vegetables in the streets, this time they decided to abuse some animals. In Nantes and Angers a number of coypu (ragondin) were released in front of some government buildings. When the terrified animals tried to find cover they were beaten and kicked by the demonstrators and in one case sprayed with red paint. We know this because the people involved were happy to do this in front of the press, so videos have been posted on the internet.


This, of course, has been a spectacular own-goal as the videos have attracted a lot of public outrage. The farmers' behaviour begs the question that if they treat animals like that in public then what are they doing behind closed doors. We were also outraged by the farmers taking out their anger on innocent animals so we have filed a complaint with the public prosecutor for cruelty towards animals, intentional harm and also unauthorised release of a so-called pest. We're not alone in this, the major organisations for the protection of animals have also filed complaints. Let's hope that something comes of it.



Our repertoire of animals expanded when Pepito, a billy goat came to stay. Pepito had been raised on a goat cheese farm where he worked as a stud. Unfortunately, at the ripe old age of six, he had to make way for a younger replacement. However, instead of a gold watch and a pension, Pepito's retirement package consisted of a trip to the abattoir.

Fate intervened on his behalf in the form of Elie, a visitor taking a guided tour of the farm. Once she learnt what the future held for him, she asked his owners if she could save him. When they agreed, she quickly made plans and a two part solution was found. His permanent home would be with a family who had other goats, so they could only take him once he was no longer fertile. In the meantime he would stay with us.

The big day arrived and Elie turned up in her van with Pepito.

Once she let him out we were impressed by the size of his bladder as he relieved himself at great length after his two hour journey. Amazingly, although this was his first ever journey in a vehicle, he didn't do any of his business in the van. We were somewhat less impressed by his odour. Strong doesn't do it justice: it's also “sticky”. Once you touched him the odour stayed on your hands and then was also transferred to whatever you touched.

Pepito was easily lead to his new accommodation in our garden. It must have been quite a big change for him as until then he had only known the pens at the farm. In fact, he was so unused to nature that it took a few days before he began to eat any vegetation, his previous diet consisting almost entirely of hay and concentrate.

After a few days the vet came round to carry out the castration... and so began one of the most fraught experiences of our lives. This was the first time that the vet had operated on a goat, so he had to estimate Pepito's weight for the dose of anaesthetic. He definitely didn't underestimate because Pepito went under quite rapidly, so he quickly got stuck into the operation. As I was directing the light I had a wince-inducing front row seat view and you can be thankful that I'm sparing you the gory details.
Once the operation was over, we waited for Pepito to wake up. And we waited, and we waited and then... he stopped breathing. Aghast we waited for the vet to do something, then, after a few very long seconds, Pepito finally took another breath. Phew! Then he stopped breathing again. The vet reached into Pepito's mouth and pulled hi
s tongue out and Pepito took another breath. Apparently pulling the tongue stimulates the breathing reflex.

For the next 45 minutes or so we all watched on tenterhooks for Pepito's breathing to become regular. There was no antidote to the anaesthetic, so it was a question of waiting for him to metabolise it. Eventually the vet declared that he was satisfied that Pepito's breathing had stabilised, so he packed up and left.

No sooner had he disappeared down the lane, then Pepito stopped breathing again and didn't start no matter what we tried. A brief panic ensued when I discovered that I didn't have the vet's number on my mobile, so I dashed back to the house and called the surgery. Luckily, whilst I was making the call, Pepito had started breathing again. A few minutes later the vet returned and gave an injection of something to stimulate the breathing. Soon after, the anaesthetic wore off sufficiently for Pepito to unconcernedly get to his feet, totally unaware of the nervous wrecks surrounding him.

A couple of weeks passed, during which Pepito found gainful employment, once he had discovered the joys of eating weeds and brambles and then he went off to his permanent home. As a precaution, he was kept separate from the young ladies for a little while just to ensure that he couldn't impregnate them. He's now living amongst them and enjoying a life in nature rather than a muddy pen.


Protest Walk in Bournezeau

You may remember from the last Infoflash that together with VIDA we were organising a protest walk in Bournezeau to demand that the shooting of cats in the centre of the village should stop. It was a great succes. With 80 participants from all over the Vendée and beyond (Nantes and La Rochelle) we showed that the killing of cats is unacceptable. The event even reached the press.  The police is still carrying out it's investigation and up to today no more rifle shots have been heard in the center of Bournezeau. Below a little impression of the 2 hour walk. 



But unfortunately attacks on cats in the Vendée continue ....

On the 21st of November we were contacted by a couple of Sainte Hermine 85210 who told us the horrendous story of their cat being burned alive in a trap. 

Sacha was used to having his little morning walk through the garden and usually would come back after 10 minutes. So on Friday November the 14th Sacha went out like every other day. But he didn't come back. His owner started to get worried. He called and called but to no avail. It was towards the end of the afternoon around 4 PM that a strange cat  appeared on his doorstep. As the cat looked like he was suffering from a severe skin disease he didn't want to take the risk of letting him in as he has other cats in the house. He was just about to shut the door when he saw the red collar that looked so much like the one Sacha was wearing. It was with shock and horror that the recognition dawned that he was looking at his own cat. Sacha's fur was burned on his face, on his sides, everywhere. He had burn marks on his skin. The owner burst into tears. He went for help to the neighbours and drove straight away to the vet. From the vet’s practice he phoned his wife who was still at work.

Sacha was in agony. With the consent of the couple the decision was quickly made to put an end to his suffering. It was only then that they could investigate more precisely what had happened to Sacha. The owner's wife took a lot of photos. It seems almost certain that Sacha had been caught in a trap and that he was burned with a blowtorch while still in this trap. His feet were not burned but the skin under his feet had peeled away so it seems he had been trying to resist and escape but he couldn’t get away from the flame.

Sacha's owners spoke to the mayor of the village and the police who seem to take the issue very seriously. Currently the police are investigating. We have sent a complaint to the public prosecutor. Such acts of cruelty towards animals are punishable by a fine of €30,000 and 2 years in prison. We sincerely hope that the evil person or people responsible is/are caught and punished to the full extent of the law.


It's Christmas Time

But enough of unpleasant matters. It's time for something more festive! NALA is always in need of money for food and vet bills for our cats in fosterhomes. Sue and Stuart have helped us out enormously with their monthly pub-quizs and  their book afternoons. Again, this year they are organising the yearly NALA X-mas Quiz. The quiz (5 euros per entry) is available until 14th January at the quiz nights at St Vincent Sterlanges and Mouilleron en Pareds, at the book days in Cheffois. If you wish to have one sent to you please send a stamped and self addressed envelope to 12, rue du bourg Chasteigner 85390 Cheffois and we will post a copy back to you. The prize is a 50 euros voucher.  

In the beginning of november NALA had a stand at the Christmas Trader's Fayre at the Clemenceau Bar in Mouilleron en Pareds. And Elsa, foster mum and member of the NALA Committee, and her partner Alexandre, who are the proud owners of the bakery in Beaulieu sous la Roche, gave NALA the opportunity to sell some necklaces and bracelets (please look here on how you can also order them) during the famous and well attended X-mas market. We thank them and all other volunteers for their unstinting support.

Clemenceau Bar Mouilleron en Pareds

Christmas Fair in Beaulieu sous la Roche 


Bedwarmers Looking For a Good Home

It's time for something cute and fluffy, so here's Capucine who is up for adoption. Capucine is a very friendly female cat who was handed over to the association when her mistress had to go into an old peoples’ home. She loves being cuddled.  For information on how to adopt Heidie or any of the other cats please call 06 52 60 08 84 or send an e-mail to Thank you for thinking of her! 


Program 2015


With this 2014 Overview We Wish You All a Very Merry Christmas and a Happy 2015!


Come and join Nala!  Together we are stronger!

In 2014, thanks to your support, your gifts, your benevolence and your care, we were able to take in, to look after, to identify, to sterilise, to vaccinate and to have adopted in loving homes 32 animals and to bring specific treatment to other abandoned animals.

We thank you with all our heart!

Our association doesn't benefit from any subsidies and we need you more than ever to be able to continue our actions.

By continuing your membership, your sponsoring, your gifts and your trust in NALA, you can help us to continue:
  •  to look after the cats we took in and to have them adopted
  •  our subsidies program for the sterilisation and identification of cats and giving financial help to people with little money for sterilisation, identification or in case of an expensive operation for their cat ….
  • handing in complaints for the mistreatment of (stray) animals and helping people to prepare and hand in their own complaints if their animal has been mistreated/killed by someone
  • report cases of mistreatment to the authorities/bigger associations
  • lobby to improve the system for dealing with stray animals in France
  • the collection of statistics of found animals in the Vendée (registers)
  • the enquiry into the disappearance of cats in certain area's
  • the project of obligatory sterilisation of cats in France (example Belgium)
  • the information and campaigns to propagate awareness of the need for sterilisation and identification
Please fill in the following form, copy and paste it into an e-mail and send it to
Once we have received your cheque (address: 2, place de la Mairie, 85480 Bournezeau) we will send you your membership cardThank you for your support!

 ! NEW ! Your membership and donations are deductible from your tax. 

I become a member of NALA 85480 for 2015 and chose the following:

Name : ......................................................................

Address : ..................................................................

Tel : …........................ e-mail address: ..............................................................

- individual : 10 euros

- family : 25 euros

- supporter : 50 euros

- benefactor : 100 euros

- for life : 1 000 euros

I choose to sponsor an animal :

- 5 euros / month

- 10 euros / month

- 15 euros or more / month

I'll send a cheque made out to association NALA 85480 to the value of …... euros.


© NALA 85480, December 2014, Bournezeau 
Tel.  07 70 31 54 59
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