Turkey is home to numerous stray cats and dogs, most of whom wander the streets daily in search of food and shelter. Aware of this issue, one Turkish woman has gone out of her way to help out the local cats near her home. Her kindness and compassion have given many felines an escape from the cold.
Sebnem Ilhan, a dentist in Tekirdag, has a soft spot in her heart for homeless animals. But she knew that the temperatures would be dropping soon, and wanted to find a way to help the cats. "It is very cold here this winter. My housekeeper and I are living in the warmth. I was sad and worried about the cats outside," Ilhan stated.
Concerned about how the local cats would manage the colder temperatures, Illhan devised a creative plan to give the cats access to her home when they needed some warmth and shelter. To do that, Ilhan had to build a ladder to lead up to her flat.
The ladder is roughly two meters long, and cats can climb up it to enter Ilhan's house through a window. The window leads to a part of Ilhan's home that she has set up for the cats, complete with areas with food, water, and warm places to sleep.
"I made the ladder so the cats can come into my comfortable house," Ilhan explained. Then she worried that her neighbors might not appreciate the cats coming in and out of the building, so she decided to decorate it. Ilhan states, "I thought if I put some flower pots there, it wouldn't bother anyone."
Her design worked as her neighbors loved the ornamentation, and the local cats loved having a warm, safe place to shelter when they needed a place to go.
The "cat ladder" is just one of the many ways that Ilhan works on behalf of the stray animals in her part of Turkey. When she isn't working, Ilhan volunteers to take care of other stray dogs and cats who are in need of a compassionate, loving person like her.
"I wish no animal is hungry or thirsty, just happy," Ilhan said. "This world is not just for people."
Watch the video below featuring Ilhan and her cat ladder, then share this heartwarming story with your family and friends on Facebook.