MALAYSIANS KINI Norashikin Ahmad, 24, has been rescuing dogs and cats ever since 2014 when she got her first job. She houses 120 cats and 50 dogs in a purpose-built shelter next to her home in Alor Gajah, Malacca. On top of running the shelter, she works full-time, helps out with her mother’s food business and has to travel to the mosque in the next village to pray as she is not welcome at the one right outside her house.
We first meet Shikin (as she is commonly known) at the Alor Gajah morning market where she works at her mother’s food stall on Sundays.
After the market, we follow her to a small village off the main road. There are several buildings on her property but none that look, or smell, like an animal shelter.
Shiro, a tiny scrappy-looking shih tzu, straggles out to greet us.
Shikin throws Shiro a rubber ball as she points to a maroon-coloured building in front of us, “that’s my shelter!” ...