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18 posts from August 2010

Whoa! These little pups are stinkin' cute! And they'll be available as early as this weekend.

If you can handle the cuteness and are interested in giving one of these young dogs a forever home with your family, you should read this info about how we place high interest animals into homes. Puppies come with their own special considerations, as well as great rewards, so we follow these steps to ensure both puppy and you are happy for the long term.

The adoption fee for a puppy is $140, which includes a microchip, initial vaccinations, a spay or neuter surgery and an initial visit to a veterinarian after you bring him home.

If you have further questions, please visit PAWS Companion Animal Shelter in Lynnwood, WA and speak with an adoption advisor.

Kay Joubert, Director of Companion Animal Services, updated us about a special kitty currently in our care:

Junior-Edit “Sadly, Junior's person died of cancer, and a friend brought Junior in to PAWS to find him a new home. Like a lot of new arrivals who’ve gone through such a dramatic loss and change, Junior got sick with an upper respiratory infection about a week later and went out to recuperate in foster care. It took him about six weeks to kick the infection.

Since he had some severe dental issues, our friends at VCA Sno-Wood Veterinary Hospital kindly did dental radiographs and confirmed that he needed to have his canines extracted. He’s now back with shiny, clean, healthy teeth, and is recuperating once again at a volunteer foster home. He should be ready for adoption within a week.”

In this video clip, I got a chance to play with Junior just before he went out for his dental work (you can see his oversize “fangs” that have since been removed). As you can see, he is super-affectionate and loving. He comes right up to nuzzle and purr, and will be a great lap cat for the right guardian.

When Junior returns to the shelter, he’ll be more than ready to finally go to his forever home. Will that be yours?

And while Junior is not up for adoption yet, don’t forget this is the last weekend of our August cat special. The adoption fee for cats 6 months and older is $75, and for senior cats 7 years and older it’s $35. Meet the cat of your dreams!

I recently asked Capt. Steve Baer from the Seattle Fire Department how he and his canine partner Henny are able to raise thousands of dollars every year at PAWSwalk to save animal lives.

Read about their inspiring efforts and learn the tips for their success below. Then register for PAWSwalk online today, and join us for all the fun on Saturday, September 11 at Seattle’s Magnuson Park.

SteveAndHennyOnL1How long have you been participating in PAWSwalk?
I believe this will be our 4th year in a row participating in PAWSwalk.

What got you started?
We first heard about PAWSwalk when my wife and I were dropping off a sick bird to the PAWS Wildlife Center. We found an injured crow on a school playground and felt like we just shouldn’t turn our back on this bird.  So we took him (or her) to PAWS.

What is your favorite part of PAWSwalk?
The first two years of PAWSwalk my favorite part was seeing all the other cool dogs and getting to meet and interact with them both before and during the walk. But, now that I’m a dad with a two-year-old, my favorite part is ducking out early on the walk and taking my daughter to the Magnuson Park playground and watching all the walkers and dogs go by while we swing and slide. It’s a win win for everyone.

Henny at PAWSwalk 2008 Why do you think participating in PAWSwalk is important? Do you feel like it makes a difference?
Now that I’m an adult (or mostly) I’ve realized I can’t take home every stray or injured animal I come across. But by raising money for an organization like PAWS I feel like I’m able to help then in an indirect way, even if I can’t take them home with me.

How do you ask for donations toward your personal PAWSwalk fundraising goal?
Within the Seattle Fire Department I work with a lot of generous people who love animals. Once I let it be known that we’re participating, the donations just start coming.

You’re quite successful each year in your fundraising efforts - why do you think this is?
Every week or so I send out updates on how we’re progressing toward our goal. I also post about PAWSwalk on my Facebook account regularly in the hopes of reminding people that they want to donate.
Ultimately, I’m only successful because of the people who make the donations. I’m just the friendly (yet persistent) catalyst who brings them together with PAWS so they can donate and help make a difference.

Thank you so much to Capt. Baer and Henny for all they have done and continue to do for the animals at PAWS!

You can read more about Henny the Arson Dog, and follow her updates on the Seattle Fire Department website. If you can’t join us for PAWSwalk, please consider making a gift to the animals to help Henny and Capt. Baer toward their fundraising goal.

Harbor Seal in care at PAWS prior to his release We're so happy to tell you that the Harbor Seal we updated you about last week, is now back in the sea! This was the seal who was taken to a Westport, WA hotel room by well-meaning, but unknowing vacationers.

Yesterday, after loading the now-50-pound seal into a dog crate for a long drive from Lynnwood to Ocean Shores, PAWS' Naturalist Kevin Mack and Wildlife Rehabilitator Raina Domek carried the crated seal down to the water and set him free. The seal, who had only known a pool with walls the last 12 weeks, took a bit to get his bearings. Eventually he took advantage of the vast open water around him and swam away.

You can read the full story and see video and photos of the release in the Seattle Times and on KIRO TV.

It’s a sad fact that the Ringling Bros. and Barnum and Bailey circus is back in town, returning to the Comcast Arena at Everett August 26-29.

In my experience educating circus goers about the cruelty behind circuses that use animals, I’m often surprised to find that attendees truly don’t believe the animals are abused.

Lota_former_circus_elephant It is true that even though the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) sets minimum standards of care for animals in circuses, most itinerary stops are not even inspected. While we may not always hear about breaches to the USDA standards, abuse still exists. When the USDA has inspected Ringling, the traveling circus has racked up hundreds of breaches of the Animal Welfare Act. A former Ringling employee (and plaintiff in a 2009 lawsuit against Ringling) described what he witnessed as "daily systematic abuse." The truth is, Ringling Bros. has a shameful history of brutally forcing its animals to perform unnatural acts using violence and intimidation. (Photo: Forced to perform in circuses, read Lota's story.) 


This is where you come in.

Kindly ask your family, friends, coworkers and neighbors to boycott the circus and to pass it on. Let them know that while this kind of entertainment seems like cheap family fun, it’s actually miserable for the animals and sends the wrong message to children.

Contrary to what Ringling representatives claim, costumed bears riding bikes, tigers jumping through flames, or elephants balancing on their heads, are not behaviors they might naturally perform in the wild. In reality, wild animals live their lives looking for food, sleeping or raising their young.

Here are some more points to pass on:

  • Circus animals travel across the country 11 months a year, in all weather extremes, confined in box cars with no climate control, while sleeping, eating and defecating in the same cage.
  • Circus animals are confined virtually 96 percent of their lives in barren conditions, in chains or cages, traveling between shows.
  • When they are allowed out (performing is considered exercise) they are trained using extreme "discipline" such as whipping, hitting, poking and shocking with electrical prods.

Ringling can no longer fill larger stadiums in Tacoma or Seattle. Let’s send a viral message to Ringling that retreating to smaller venues, such as in Everett won’t work in the Northwest anymore. Let Ringling know they are not welcome in any of our communities. Ask all your contacts on Facebook, Twitter and e-mail to boycott the circus and to pass on!

Read more about the plight of circus animals.

PAWS Cat City pulled out all the stops for the 2nd annual Greenwood Summer Streets event in conjunction with the monthly Art Up art walk. Not surprisingly, the Kitten Kissin' Booth, in particular, was a smashing success!

Kitten Kissin' Booth

Kitten kissin booth

Volunteers Melissa and Terri tended our most smoochable kittens (and lovebug Earl the cat who is still available for adoption!!)

Second-paw pet supplies sign Bake


 Second-paw pet supplies

Volunteers Kristen (pictured) and Dawn oversaw our gently-used pet supply sale and Colleen manned our bake sale

Photographer and PAWS Naturalist Kevin and artist/naturalist Julie displayed their wares

Thanks to everyone who stopped by to support us!

Songbird Every spring and summer at the PAWS Wildlife Center we receive dozens of young songbirds in need of help. Many are healthy orphans who have lost or become separated from their parents. Some are injured and require medical care. All require proper nutrition for their growing bodies as well as proper enclosures in which they can complete their journey from sitting in a nest to flying free.

The songbirds we receive represent a diverse group of species, and each species has its own unique behaviors. From the charmingly polite whistle of the young Black-headed Grosbeak to the soft but insistent trill of the Cedar Waxwing, this diversity is especially visible in the way baby birds beg to be fed. The video clip below will give you a glimpse of just a few of the young songbirds who were helped by PAWS this summer.

The clip begins with a Red-breasted Nuthatch fledgling who has begun to forage for himself in his aviary. The next bird you will see is a fledgling Black-headed Grosbeak who is not quite ready to feed himself. The soft whistle and the trembling wing is his way of asking for a bite to eat. Next you will see a younger, and more insistent Cedar Waxwing trilling and flapping to indicate that she is hungry. Finally, you will see three fledgling Tree Swallows requesting a meal in their own way and being fed as a result.


It really is amazing to work with baby birds and to discover each species’ unique character but, unless you have the proper permits and experience, you should never attempt to raise orphaned baby birds yourself. If they are fed an improper diet or housed in an inappropriate manner they can very quickly develop irreversible and life-threatening issues. If you do find a young bird you believe needs help, always contact PAWS or another licensed wildlife rehabilitator to receive guidance on how best to help the animal.

The Harbor Seal pup PAWS Wildlife Center has been caring for is gaining weight and growing up fast! You may remember this pup was brought to PAWS by the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) after a well-intentioned, but unknowing couple of vacationers took him into their hotel room in Westport, WA, believing him to be abandoned by his mother.

In the first part of this clip, the seal pup is eyeing us curiously, but cautiously. He has maintained a healthy wariness of humans, an important factor for his future survival in the wild. The red tag on his rear flipper is a NOAA Fisheries identification marker used to help monitor the health of marine mammal populations.

He has a healthy appetite, and has learned to hunt for fish (as seen in the last part of the video clip). With all his growth and learning, he is on track for a successful release back into wild waters soon.

Here's another clip of him, this one taken just after his arrival at PAWS. As you can see, he was much smaller then (less than two months ago!).

CAS_Kitten_03 Join us as the Greenwood Art Walk meets Seattle Summer Streets this Friday, August 13 from 6 to 9 p.m. We’ll be raising money to go toward the PAWSwalk goal with:

  • Kitten kissin' booth! Make a donation & schmoo kittens in the magic kitten tent.
  • Pet supply thrift sale - we'll have everything from gently used cat trees and crates to brushes/bowls/toys.
  • Beautiful handmade dog coats.
  • Kevin, PAWS’ Naturalist and a nature photographer, will be displaying and selling his stunning wildlife photography and answering questions.
  • Yummy bake sale.

Greenwood Ave/Phinney Ave from N 87th St to N 65th St will be closed to traffic with local businesses & artists setting up on the street for a huge block party. More details on the event at the PhinneyWood blog.

What’s cuter than 1,200 pups and 1,500 people all walking together in support of PAWS? You and your pooch joining the pack, of course!

IMG_6328The 19th annual PAWSwalk takes place this year at Seattle’s Magnuson Park on September 11, just one month away. We would love to have you, your family and friends (four-legged and two-legged alike) join us in celebrating the work PAWS does and raise funds to support the thousands of animals we will help this year.

This family event really does have something for everyone. The 5k walk, beginning at 10 a.m., takes you through scenic Magnuson Park. Is your pooch not moving as fast as he used to? Do you have a stroller you’d like to bring along? Not to worry–two short cuts will be available, making the walk accessible to everyone.

IMG_6468 Perhaps you’d like to see how Fido does on the agility course hosted by the Canine Behavior Center, or at fly ball with the Seattle FlyDogs Fly Ball club. Also this year, we’ll have face painting for kids, as well as fun activities in our Kids Zone. We’re even introducing a new guardian and canine look-a-like contest this year.

Register today and use the next month to raise funds that will support the life-saving work PAWS does each day. 

Want to volunteer at the event? We could use your help. Contact Sasha Anderson at sanderson@paws.org or 425.787.2500 x261.

We’ll see you at PAWSwalk 2010!

P.S. – On Thursday, August 19 the PAWS Staff and Volunteer Team will host a special PAWSwalk 2010 fundraiser at BalMar in Ballard! Your pooch is welcome on their outdoor patio, and there will be food and drink specials available, plus an exciting raffle drawing for fun prizes. Visit the PAWS Events Calendar for more information.