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The Egyptian Mau Rescue Organisation (EMRO)
Cats In Crisis!

Could YOU help EMRO give sanctuary to the Egyptian Maus roaming the streets of Cairo foraging in rubble and waste bins?

Story EMRO reports that Egyptian Maus are facing possible extinction in their homeland, no longer respected and cherished. EMRO is dedicated to rescuing these descendants of the sacred cat of Ancient Egypt. This article outlines their aims and suggests ways you may be able to help them provide a sanctuary for these beautiful spotted cats.

A feral spotted cat forages among the waste bins of Cairo.

The Egyptian Mau is well known, bred and shown in many countries of the world. It is believed these cats are descendants of the sacred cats of Ancient Egypt, their ancestry goingaaa back at least 3,500 years. A Mau is the only naturally occurring spotted cat. It bears the “M” mark on its forehead, sometimes called the “scarab mark” after the symbol the Ancient Egyptians considered divine. As highly honoured and respected animals, it was an offence to hurt or kill a cat, there was mourning when a cat died and many have been found mummified in tombs indicating an honoured burial.

Cairo cat.

Sadly the life of the Mau is very different in today’s Egypt. These beautiful spotted cats are facing persecution and possible extinction. They are neither protected nor valued, in fact, the public there perceives them as undesirable pests, running feral throughout the country, foraging in rubble and dustbins for food. There is no veterinary care for stray cats and they live a short, hungry and painful existence. The Egyptian government, in a desperate attempt to curb the growing numbers of stray animals, is systematically poisoning cats, many of which are clearly feral Egyptian Maus.


It is a group of concerned individuals, living and working in Egypt, who passionately believe it is time the Egyptian Mau was returned to a position of respect in its country of origin. EMRO believes the Mau should be recognised as a natural heritage and respected as such by the Egyptian people. This will require both education and information given by EMRO to raise awareness of these important issues.

It is the aim of the newly formed group to rescue and give sanctuary to as many of the feral Maus in Egypt as possible, before it is too late. EMRO is fund raising and working to create a safe and healthy environment in Cairo where the rescued cats can live safely. The majority of Maus captured will be neutered or spayed and found good, loving homes wherever possible. EMRO also plans to have the Sanctuary open to local and tourist visitors for educational and historic purposes.

The streets of Cairo are no refuge for this feral Mau.

Already, some possible locations for the Sanctuary have been earmarked near Giza and the ancient pyramids.

The rescued bronze male - the spotting is clearly defined and type reasonable good.

To preserve the breed in Egypt, a small, very select group of the most typical and well-spotted Maus will be bred from and some cats could become available to suitable breeders. EMRO would be able to arrange the veterinary examinations, vaccines, paperwork and necessary certification etc for export, something that is very difficult to organise at present by someone not residing in Egypt.

Indeed, a breeder from the USA has recently visited Cairo, obtained a bronze Mau with a good pattern and has been able to take the cat home with her, complete with all the necessary paperwork for recognition.

EMRO is applying for non-profit status and will have a ten member governing Board of Directors to control the project. They will have a small staff and hopefully many dedicated volunteers as they depend solely upon the generosity and support of the public and private benefactors.


• Make a donation to the Sanctuary Fund via cash; international cheque; bank deposit or Visa via Pay-Pal. Tax deduction receipts will be available soon.

• Help to promote their vision through advertising or by linking their website to yours to raise worldwide awareness.

• Give some fund-raising efforts or share ideas to help EMRO boost finances.

• Sponsor an EMRO Sanctuary cat or cats.

• If you are a breeder of Maus, would you be prepared to donate a portion of future kitten sales to EMRO ?

• Make a bequest to EMRO in your will.

• Give advice and support with feral rescue techniques and equipment so we may save these Maus before it is too late.

• Volunteer to come to Egypt and work with the group. (EMRO could help arrange visits to the Museums and historical sites etc in return!)

• Help with donations of food, equipment and veterinary supplies.

• Help with educational/informative brochures, displays on Egyptian Maus around the world, advice on spaying/neutering etc. to help with the educational programme in Egypt.

As you can see, there is much to be done! Please help EMRO to make a profound difference in the quality of life for Egyptian Maus at their source….. Time is of the essence!

Dr Ismail Elkholy & Ms Gloria Lauris

The Egyptian Mau Rescue Organisation (EMRO)

c/o 76 Gamet El Dowal El Arabia Street

Mohandesseen GIZA Egypt

Email: emro@telus.net Website: www.emaurescue.org