Jump to Main ContentJump to Primary Navigation
Top

Meet the animal loving nurse who turned her home into a sanctuary for 175 sick cats

pa-20682717.jpg
615x330-cathero.jpg

When we get home after work, we want to crash out on the sofa with a glass of wine. But when Maria Torero, a 45-year-old nurse in Peru, gets off her shift she tends to 175 desperately ill cats.

Torero has turned her eight-room, two-story house into a sanctuary for felines with leukemia, scattering it with food bowls and two-dozen litter trays to make them comfortable.

The woman, who is also a mother of three children aged 16, 14 and 6, has been running her in-house cat hospice for five years.

She spends around £1,200 a month paying for their food and medicine, half of that from donations and the other half from her job as a private nurse.

Maria Torero cares for 175 cats (at last count) in her home in Lima

Torero finds strays around the markets and local streets of Lima, Peru´s capital, and gets them tested for leukemia before bringing them home with her. Nearly all of the street cats turn out to have the disease, which is not contagious to humans or other species, as well as fleas, parasites and malnutrition.

She said she doses out medicine, sterilises the animals and treats them for parasites every two months.

Her arms bear scratches from the cats that resist the injections, but she doesn't mind. "My best gift [is] love and respect I give them in life," she told Associated Press.

Torero has transformed plastic organiser bins into beds for the cats

She even knits them adorable little jumpers and gives them names such as Fellini, Peppa, Dolly and Misterio to name a few.

"Each one has a distinct personality," she said.

Meanwhile her children who live with her often play or cuddle with the cats.

She says each cat has a personality and gives them names as well as knitting them jumpers

When people ask why Torero doesn't care for healthy abandoned cats, she answers, "That’s not my role".

"I’m a nurse. My duty is to the cats that nobody cares about. People don’t adopt adult cats, especially if they are terminally ill."

Torero only takes in adult cats to avoid spreading the disease to new generations. "Bringing a kitten here is condemning it to death,"' she said.

(Images: Press Association)

Related

hero.jpg

Jennifer Aniston reveals she stays at home to avoid "very nasty" cyber bullies and critics

rexfeatures-1310669dk.jpg

The bigger the wedding, the happier the marriage study finds

hero.jpg

Adventurous foodie creates deep fried tequila shots, gooey doritos cheese bites and mac'n'cheese burritos

untitled-16.jpg

Is this the world's most expensive apartment?

hero4.jpg

10 amazing breakfasts from around the world

hero3.jpg

It's getting chilly: 20 autumn coats to buy now

More

These are the most-searched gender-neutral baby names in the UK

Parents are increasingly leaning towards androgynous names, according to new research.

by Moya Crockett
16 Aug 2017

How to stop negative news stories impacting your mental health

14 ways to stay calm when the world’s headlines trigger your anxiety

by Kayleigh Dray
16 Aug 2017

Cadbury coated Oreos are a thing and they look ridiculously good

Oreo addicts, this is essential reading

by Megan Murray
16 Aug 2017

Everything we know so far about The Handmaids Tale 2

Here’s what we can expect to happen in the second series

16 Aug 2017

Customers refuse to tip waitress after spotting her pro-LGBT tattoo

“Can’t tip someone who doesn’t love Jesus”

by Susan Devaney
16 Aug 2017

The most defiant and uplifting tweets about the Charlottesville violen

Obama's message became the most liked tweet in history

by Sarah Biddlecombe
16 Aug 2017

Game of Thrones fans, could this be Cersei’s secret son?

Read on at your own peril…

by Kayleigh Dray
16 Aug 2017

Woman sparks debate after complaining about “cheap” engagement ring

How much is not enough?

by Kayleigh Dray
16 Aug 2017

Sex toy reviewer is a job and it pays £28,000 (with unlimited holiday)

Get paid to do something you really love: you

by Kayleigh Dray
16 Aug 2017

The best response to a man who tried to mansplain mansplaining

by Nicola Colyer
15 Aug 2017