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25 posts from September 2011

Donnie – Terrier, Pit Bull mix – two years old

Walkin Dogs Donnie PAWS Washington Donnie has won a special place in my heart, the kind reserved for other long-timers like Cora and Huck Finn. It really surprises me that Donnie has been with us as long as he has, but in a way it’s been a real blessing.  A lot of dogs come and go, not giving me a chance to get too attached, but I have had the opportunity to spend a lot of time with Donnie. To be entirely honest, it might be a little bittersweet when he finally finds his forever home, but ultimately he’ll be better off, and even just thinking about this brings a smile to my face.

For those of you unfamiliar with Donnie, he is the textbook definition of goof. Before heading outside this week, I am inside his kennel, scratching his belly and back. Before I can get out of the way, he goes into a spin trying to grab his own tail. He succeeds, but quickly realizes its part of him. He comes to a complete stop, sits down, and nuzzles at the leash in my hand, signaling that he’s ready to go.

Outside, Donnie is a real gentleman on the leash, never more than a step in front of me, he seems on the hunt for something as his nose is buried along the trail. His attention is quickly diverted anytime I scratch is lower back, definitely one of his favorite spots. We spend some time in the off leash area playing fetch. Anytime the ball rolls by the small pool we have there, Donnie cautiously eyes it as to not get too close; not quite a water dog, at least not yet.

It is hard for me to imagine the shelter without him smiling at me with his tail wagging full speed as I walk by his kennel. But I know he will be far better off with a loving family, despite how much of a favorite he has become around PAWS.

To learn more about Donnie, visit his profile, or check out his video below:


Tomorrow is the last day to take the Raccoon quiz and be entered to win free Brown Bear Car Washes.

In celebration of all things Raccoon, we’ve collected some of our favorite ‘coon moments for your viewing pleasure.

What do Raccoons eat? Find out in “Meet The Raccoons”.

Check out the behind the scenes footage of our video, “Meet The Raccoons”. 


RaccoonWeb A sweet Raccoon moment filmed in a Fremont backyard.  

Concerned neighbor and Raccoon mom team up to save her kit.

After taking our Raccoon quiz, you’ll learn how to prevent Raccoon mayhem.

Raccoons on parade in West Seattle!


October is national Adopt-A-Dog month! PAWS is celebrating by offering discounted adoption fees for all adoptable dogs, including Donnie!  This sweet and loveable guy is only one of the many amazing dogs waiting for their forever homes at PAWS. Check out his video! 


If discounted adoption fees aren’t reason enough to come take home a new best friend, here are four more reasons to adopt a dog in October:

  1. You’ll find your perfect match! At PAWS, we take great strides to make sure that each dog is matched to the perfect family. Are you an outdoor enthusiast? We’ll pair you with a canine pal that can keep up. Prefer to park it on the couch? PAWS has the perfect snuggle buddy for you, too.
  2. You’ll take home the complete package! Not only will you be adding a new best friend to your pack, but all dogs adopted from PAWS are spayed or neutered, microchipped, vaccinated, and come with a free visit to a local vet.
  3. You’ll receive unconditional love! Adopted dogs know that they’ve been given a second chance, and they love you all the more for giving them the caring home they deserve.
  4. You’ll be making a difference. Adopting a dog from a shelter instead of buying one from a pet store decreases demand for puppy mills, and creates one more space at PAWS where a homeless dog can be cared for while they wait for their forever home.  

JD 1

Are you smarter than a Raccoon? Find out by October 1!

2010_10_WildAgain_Photo11 Take our fun and easy Raccoon Quiz to see how you measure on Raccoon smarts. Complete our quiz by October 1 for a chance to win free Brown Bear Car Washes.

Our 6-question quiz takes only a short time to take, but what you’ll learn is timeless:

  • How to keep your home, pets and family safe from Raccoon encounters.
  • When to Raccoon-proof your home.
  • What you score on Raccoon knowledge.

Help us reach our Raccoon Education Campaign goal by passing this message on to family, friends, neighbors and coworkers and encourage them to also take the quiz by October 1! We’d love to hear if you’ve passed it on. Write us at publicaffairs@paws.org.

Hungry for more info?

On behalf of wild animals, including Raccoons, thank you!



After seeing the horrible images from the BP Oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, Noeleen Stewart and her husband jumped on a plane to help the damaged birds in need. Noeleen is a life-long animal lover, and has even brought several injured wild animals to PAWS, but the oil spill was the jump-start she needed to begin volunteering in animal welfare.

Noeleen Stewart with opossum

“Witnessing the devastation and suffering of the wildlife while I was in the Gulf made me decide that as soon as I returned home I would sign up to volunteer at PAWS. And I did.”

Photo: Noeleen and a baby opossom at PAWS.

Now, Noeleen volunteers as a Wildlife Care Assistant and helps care for the wild animals that are rehabilitating at PAWS. Sometimes Noeleen even gets to accompany the PAWS staff for wildlife releases, one of the many perks of volunteering at PAWS.

At a Bald Eagle release, Noeleen was prepared for the beautiful bird to hop right out of his carrier and quickly fly away. “But after about 10-15 minutes, the Eagle did not want to come out!” Naturalist Kevin Mack, Wildlife Rehabilitator Dondi Byrne, and Noeleen encouraged the bird to leave, but he just would not fly away. At a loss for what to do, the team got creative.

“Kevin asked Dondi to distract the eagle. Her only thought of distraction was to walk around flapping her arms like a bird. Well, the eagle took one look at her and made a dash for it. All I could think of was what she must have looked like to the bird. It was my funniest moment at PAWS.”

Volunteering at PAWS not only gives Noeleen the opportunity to help wildlife, but also the chance to work with likeminded people.

“Everyone at PAWS has an absolute passion for helping these injured and orphaned animals,” she says. “Being a volunteer has shown me that there are really good, empathic people out there that really do help animals.”

“Noeleen is just a pleasure to work with,” says PAWS Wildlife Volunteer Manager Frances Boyens. “She’s always up for more!”

Thank you, Noeleen, for your passion and dedication to the animals at PAWS. Your hard work and great attitude really do make a difference.

 Learn more about volunteering at PAWS. 

Harry – Terrier, Pit Bull/Mix – one year old

Harrywalkweb I’m not entirely certain of Harry’s back-story; but he came to us about two weeks ago and was far too skinny for a pup of his age. His first few nights in the kennel were a bit rough, as he seemed stressed by everything going on around him. I remember slowly walking in with him hiding in the corner. He seemed a bit unsure of my presence at first but after he learned I had a pocket full of treats, he quickly warmed right up to me.

This week was an entirely different story. Harry was sitting at the kennel door, eagerly waiting to meet his next best friend, whether human or canine. It makes me so happy to see such a quick improvement with a pup like Harry in such a short time. I think it really goes to show how well taken care of the animals are in PAWS’ care, as Harry’s story is true of many of the dogs we work with here.

As I open his gate, Harry quickly grabs a toy, walks over to me and places it at my feet. It is such a cute offering that I quickly reward him with a treat. I get the feeling this isn’t the first time that trick has worked for a delicious reward. As we’re hanging out in his kennel, Harry tries to bury himself underneath my legs, spin onto his back and then sit patiently. I’m positive he’s thinking, “Go ahead… scratch my belly.”

Harry is a bundle of both friendliness and curiosity; he loves both people and other dogs and is ready to join a forever family that is ready to give him as much love as he offers.  He is the type of dog you’ll see sitting patiently in his kennel and your heart immediately melts. He’s just another wonderful dog here at PAWS.  Another dog deserving of a loving home.

Learn more about Harry. 

3 Young Raccoons 082504 KM Join PAWS Sunday, September 25 from 11 a.m. -- 5 p.m. at Sustainable Ballard Festival – Corner of NW 57th & 22nd NW (Ballard Commons Park). Stop by our booth to find out how to live conflict-free with Raccoons. Take the PAWS’ Raccoon quiz on our laptop and get entered to win free car washes too! And while you're there, browse our adoptable pet binder and find out about volunteer opportunities with PAWS.
This fun community fair showcases everything sustainable, with how-to workshops, green transportation and home centers, fun and educational activities, local and sustainable businesses, and live music on our solar-powered stage. The kids can enjoy fun green activities in each area plus a storytelling and puppetry tent.

Way to go Cleo!

Cleopatra-&-adopter-web After nine months in our care at PAWS, Cleopatra found her new home. This sassy princess won the heart of a sweet young lady from Seattle. While we’ll miss Cleopatra’s playful attitude and adorable mews, we could not be more thrilled that she once again has a kingdom to call her own.  We’re so happy for you!

To see what a special cat Cleopatra is, check out our video of her.  


Help protect cougars—send WDFW survey feedback today!

Cougar Cub Today, September 20, is the last day to give the Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) your input on how wildlife, especially our fragile cougar population, is managed in our state.

If you live in Washington, please take a few minutes today to fill out WDFW's survey!

HELPFUL HINTS: WDFW’s survey is short and fast—the first page is the only required field to answer. The six question quiz should be quick to take, but if you are really short on time, skip to Issue 3 and 4, regarding cougar management. Please choose “other” and include some, or all, of the message below in your survey comments:

  • Cougar populations are an essential part of Washington’s ecosystem. Scientists have found that stable cougar populations get into less trouble with humans and livestock, and consequently reduce the risk of conflicts with humans. Researchers have defined a stable cougar population to be one that does not exceed a 12% human-caused mortality rate, of the estimated adult cougar population, in any given Game Management Unit (GMU).
  • Please do not exceed a 12% mortality rate when deciding cougar management policy. Also, please do not extend cougar management to include the indiscriminate and inhumane practice of sport hound hunting.   

Your feedback will play an important role in shaping wildlife management and associated hunting regulations for 2012-14. Final recommendations will be presented to the Washington Fish and Wildlife Commission for adoption next spring. 

Help us track who responded to the survey. Send your comments, or simply a quick note, that you took the survey, to publicaffairs@paws.org.

Thank you! Together we can be a voice for wildlife management in Washington State. 

“Nala has fit effortlessly into our family and makes us laugh when she chases squirrels, army crawls across the floor, and does barrel roles when we play fetch. It's hard to believe she was ever given up, she's just so darn sweet!”

Nala-and-adopter At PAWS, we find forever homes for the animals in our care. This means making sure adopters and their new family members are the perfect fit by matching energy levels, motivations, and lifestyles.   Volunteer feedback, staff evaluations, and the Meet Your Match program all help us to learn more about a cat or dog that has come to PAWS, and provides valuable information for adopters looking to add a new furry friend to their family.

When Nala came to PAWS, we learned that even though she appears a bit shy, she loves to run. Nala was going to need an extra-special family that would help her build her confidence as well as give her plenty of exercise - a daily walk around the block wasn’t going to cut it for this high-energy lady. Then, Nala met Rachel. Rachel loves to run too! After getting to know each other, it was clear that Nala and Rachel are a perfect pair.

Now, Nala gets all the care and exercise she needs – she even gets to go on long hikes on the weekend! Rachel sent us some updates on how Nala is fitting in at home:
“I just wanted to thank PAWS for all you do and the second chances you give all the animals. Nala has brought so much energy and joy into my family and we can't imagine being without her. The attached picture is from a hike we took her on to Wallace Falls. She sure does love her walks and runs!”