By Kellie Benz, PAWS Staff

When you see a vista like the one PAWS staff arrived at yesterday it’s hard to imagine wanting to leave. For the release of a PAWS patient that we've come to know as American Black Bear 2014-1317, we hope she agrees!

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A wildlife release is the best part of a PAWS patient story, however bittersweet, but always rewarding.

This bear’s homebound journey started the night before when PAWS Veterinarians sedated her for her final exam. Once cleared for departure, PAWS staff performed one last task, a weigh in. Final tally, a healthy 151lbs. Good to go!

Once officers from Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) arrived to fetch her, PAWS staff and volunteers carried her to her waiting enclosure (pictured, right). There she would sleep off the sedation medication overnight and be ready for the trip north by morning.

At 10am yesterday, PAWS staff and WDFW officers met along Highway 2 and convoyed into the woods, hauling the now wide awake bear up jagged roads and deep into the landscape she will call home.

The story of her recovery and release aired on KOMO TV 4 last night, and their article was posted with more pictures of the quick seconds it took to release American Black Bear 2014-1317. View their photo gallery here.

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It’s been a very busy summer here at PAWS, with many of the now recuperated wildlife being returned to the ecosystem where they belong.

It's thanks to donors and PAWSWalkers that PAWS was able to save this one very lucky bear - as well as all of the animals in our care this summer - and return each to Washington’s gorgeous wilderness.

It's not too late to help us save animals year round, sign up for PAWSwalk today.

American Black Bear 2014-1317 was one of many species who get a second chance thanks to PAWS Donors. Click here and help us help animals.

PAWS Wildlife always needs dedicated volunteers – find out how you can help.

Follow our PAWS Wildlife blog.


By Katherine Spink, PAWS Staff

Every day we welcome members of the public through our shelter doors in Lynnwood and to PAWS Cat City in Seattle, and set about helping them find that special furry someone who’ll be the perfect fit for their family. There are dogs and cats of all ages, shapes and sizes, ready and waiting to find their forever homes.

But this isn’t the whole story. One thing that won’t be immediately obvious to our visitors on arrival is that there are many more prospective pet partners to meet than the ones directly in front of them. They just happen to be spending time off site with our wonderful foster parents, who provide crucial support to PAWS especially during the busy spring and summer months.

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Siamese mix Troy is one such cutie currently hanging out in foster care. A stray who was brought to PAWS back in May, he’s a handsome boy who’s happiest when he has a windowsill he can use to perch on, soak up the sun and do a little bird watching.

Troy isn’t much of a lap cuddler, but likes to hang out with his people and will lie in your arms in bed. He’s a fan of bonita flakes too so if you’re armed with those you’ll have a friend for life!

His current foster parents tell us Troy isn’t phased by their dog and we know he likes to play with other cats, so he’s a chilled out kitty in that respect. His ideal home would be somewhere peaceful with adults and older children, where he can escape for alone time when he needs it and enjoy grown up playtime when it’s on offer.

Follow Troy's foster photostream on Flickr.

Mastiff Georgie Porgie, one of the larger breeds of dog we rescue and rehome at PAWS, is another fabulous furry enjoying time in foster – stretching his legs while we search for his perfect match. He was also found as a stray and transferred to us from King County Animal Services in late June.

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There really isn’t a more fitting description for Georgie Porgie than ‘gentle giant’. Don't let his age fool you, he’s still got a mischievous spring in his step and early on in his time with us demonstrated a proficiency for unlocking gates!

Now he's settled into the relaxing foster lifestyle, he’s given escape artistry the heave-ho and just loves to snuggle and give kisses.

To help him stay cool during our beautifully hot Seattle summer, Georgie’s foster parents have been taking him to a nearby lake for playtime and discovered he loves the water!

He also really perks up when there are other pups around. Georgie is well behaved, fully house trained and has wonderful house and leash manners – in fact, what are you waiting for? He'd make the perfect PAWSwalk pup!

Next time you’re at PAWS looking for your new companion ask about the dogs and cats in foster care. Troy and Georgie Porgie are just two of many available to adopt right now. With them living off site, all we ask is that you call in advance if you're interested in meeting them. You can also pre-complete our adoption application form so you're one step ahead when you arrive at PAWS!

Interested in providing temporary foster care to animals in need? Find out more here.

Is your future playmate patiently waiting at PAWS? 

Help us continue to provide care for all our adorable adoptables. Donate now.

By Amy Webster, Community Education Coordinator

Summer is a busy time for community outreach and education, not least because it's when we're out and about encouraging people to sign up for our annual PAWSwalk! Here's what we've been up to this month, and what you can look forward to in September.

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We’re all about PAWSwalk right now, and have enjoyed meeting supporters old and new at our Path To PAWSwalk events through August.

From fundraising at Chico's in Alderwood Mall to awareness raising at Whole Foods Market in Redmond and Bellevue, it's been a blast!

Riley the Raccoon also made his PAWSwalk appearance to help remind shoppers to sign up for our biggest community fundraiser of the year.

Don't worry, if you missed Riley on the road you can see him at PAWSwalk on September 6 at Marymoor Park!

In other event news, we welcomed new participants to our youth service learning workshops. Are you under 18 and looking to help out at PAWS? Sign up to receive updates on youth volunteer opportunities.

As the weather cools and school starts again, we have many exciting events coming up:

Saturday, September 6: Puget Sound Bird Fest in Edmonds 
Nature lovers and bird enthusiasts from all around the region come to celebrate the diverse variety of birds found in the Puget Sound area with guided nature walks, expert speakers, and exhibits. The event runs September 5-7, and PAWS will be there 10am to 5pm on Saturday the 6th so come see us!

Saturday, September 13, 2pm-3:30pm: Kids Helping Animals Workshop (8-13yrs) at PAWS
Come discover the many ways that kids can help animals. We will make toys for our shelter animals, practice how to help injured wildlife and make enrichment items for our recovering patients, learn the basics of fundraising, and play games illustrating how even simple choices can have big impacts. Parents and guardians are welcome to attend. RSVP here.

Saturday, September 13, 5pm to dusk: Monroe Swift Night Out
Come watch as thousands of Vaux’s Swifts return to the Wagner Center chimney as they migrate south for the winter. An amazing site—watch as one of the largest congregations of birds swoop into the chimney in just minutes! This family event will have vendors and activities for all so bring a lawn chair and enjoy one of nature’s greatest shows.

The Humane Education team will also begin delivering classroom programs throughout the community. Interested in having PAWS visit your child’s school? Here’s the complete list of presentations we offer.

Another packed month of opportunities to learn about wildlife, companion animals and the work we do here at PAWS! We look forward to seeing you out and about.

Help educate others in animal welfare and humane education—volunteer.

Help us continue inspiring the humane educators of the future—make a donation to PAWS.

Keep up to date with all our event news—follow our Events blog.


By Katherine Spink, PAWS Staff

In this month’s happy adopter update, we hear from Haruko in Kirkland, WA who’s provided a forever home not once, not twice but three times since 2011!

Tell us how you found your fur family.
Dixie, or Addie as I now call her, was the first to join me, in May 2011. I met her on my first ever visit to PAWS, having been encouraged by a former partner to visit because there were a lot of dogs in need of homes. Four and a half years old now, she was documented as a Pit Bull mix – she’s a beautiful black/brindle color.

Cody’s name at PAWS was Phillip. I found him online on the PAWS website in June 2012 and went right away to see him. He’d been brought in with his brother and someone was looking at them both so I waited around with fingers crossed. Ultimately, the other couple took his brother home and I adopted Cody! He’s approximately 5 years old and an Australian Cattle Dog.

In January 2013, I was drawn to the PAWS website again and saw Molly – a Beagle/Rat Terrier/Cattle Dog mix. I recognized her as a previous PAWS resident and thought she’d make a great final addition to my fur family.

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What attracted you to Addie, Cody and Molly?
Addie’s had me from the get go with her big eyes and one ear that wouldn’t stand up straight (pictured, right) – coupled with the fact that she cried when I left her but didn’t when others visited her and walked away. She was meant to be mine!

Cody was a little standoffish at first and seemed to be waiting for his owner to come get him. Cattle dogs typically form a close bond with their owners so I was worried, but it tore at my heart that he was waiting to be taken home – and his spotted fur and sweet face sealed the deal!

Molly had been returned by her new owners after just six short months, during which time she’d gained 15lbs! Her feisty, loveable nature attracted me instantly, and we’ve been making great progress with her weight loss since she joined the family.

How have your three PAWS pups adjusted to life in Kirkland?
When Addie arrived in 2011, she bolted straight out of the car and into my house. Then, for a week or so, she refused to get back in the car. It seems she was too happy with her new home and didn’t want to leave! So, we did fun trips to the dog park and to get ice cream, and eventually she grew to love our car rides. She was very timid initially but is now a very playful and happy girl.

Cody seemed sad when he first came home with me. It felt as though he missed his former owner but, with a lot of cuddles and love, within weeks he became attached to me. He is my protector, always on guard. I also think he’s secretly part cat the way he walks by and rubs up against me!

When Molly arrived, last but by no means least, it was clear she thought she was just a visitor for a couple weeks! When no one came to get her, she decided she should be alpha dog so we had a little adjustment period. She’s clearly alpha now – our neighbors call her Sheriff Molly!

WATN #2 Cody (L) and Molly (R) crop and resize

What do you love doing together?
We go to the beach and they LOVE it! Addie and Cody play fetch, and Addie and Molly swim and prance in the water. They just love the whole experience. Until, in Addie’s case, we get home and it’s bath time... she’s a tight fit in the bathtub and I have to ask her nicely to get in – which usually results in a big sigh before she admits defeat and climbs in!

What have they added to your life?
I’ve been through some bad times and they’ve kept me going through it all. They wake me up and go to sleep with me and, when I’m not at work, they’re my constant companions.

Thank you for sharing your story and pictures Haruko, we wish you and your wonderful PAWS pups many happy years of beach fun ahead!

If, like Haruko, you found your perfect match (or matches!) at PAWS, we want to hear about it. Email us to be featured in PAWS Where Are They Now.

Help care for our companion animals as they wait for their second chancevolunteer.

Find your Addie, Cody or Mollyadopt.

Donate now and help us continue providing a safe place for companion animals in need.


By Jen Mannas, Naturalist

It’s baby squirrel season again at the Wildlife Center, and as things are winding down in the baby bird nursery they're picking up in the small mammal nursery.

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The center is packed full of baby Eastern Gray Squirrels, a few Douglas Squirrels, and the staff and volunteers who have become their surrogate parents.

This is the second round of baby squirrels this year; the first round was back in April. This is because Gray Squirrels breed twice a year if food availability is high.

Squirrels eat mushrooms, flowers, plant shoots and even caterpillars but their preferred food source is mast. Mast is nuts from forest trees such as oaks, beeches and hickories, that are high in fat calories. This is what you typically see a squirrel busily burying in the ground.

The reason squirrels bury their food is because they do not hibernate like other mammals. Instead, they leave food caches around that they will visit again during the winter months.

Now, you may be wondering, “How in the world do squirrels remember where they hide their food?”. Well, squirrels have a very accurate spatial memory and they use land markers and scent to help them find their buried caches. This also helps with seed dispersal and germination, since the caches the squirrels do not eat will start to grow into trees.

Squirrels try to be very secretive when burying their caches so other animals won’t dig them up. If a squirrel feels like it is being watched it will pretend to bury its food. The squirrel will go through the motions of digging a hole, placing the object, and burying it but instead it will actually hide the food in its mouth to save and bury somewhere else.

Squirrel nests are usually made of leaves and are high up in the trees. When baby squirrels are born their eyes are closed and they are hairless. They typically stay in the nest for six weeks but sometimes they fall or are pushed out; that is the main reason they're brought to us here at PAWS Wildlife Center.

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The squirrels we currently have are at different stages of development and require food at different increments of time throughout the day. Our staff and volunteers work diligently to help these babies grow into healthy adults so they can be released and become functioning members of their population once again.

Help us on the wildlife rehabilitation frontline. Become a volunteer.

Make a donation and help us continue providing a safe haven for wildlife.

Walk for the animals and help thousands of wild and companion animals receive the care they need at PAWS in the coming year. Sign up for PAWSwalk on September 6, 2014.


By Katherine Spink, PAWS Staff

In our Adorable Adoptables features, we usually tell the story of a dog and cat who are taking a little longer than most to find their perfect home. This week we’re switching things up and profiling a special pair of inseparable pooches looking for their forever family together.

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Approximately 8 years old, purebred Dachshunds Briar Rose and Buzz arrived at PAWS earlier this month.

They were transferred to us from Everett Animal Shelter through our Placement Partner Program – a partnership initiative with other shelters and rescue organizations that maximizes the chance of animals in our care finding loving homes.

These two peas in a pod are super affectionate and love nothing more than an easy going stroll or a lazy day of lounging at home. If this describes your life, how about sharing it with this truly lovable pair? One word of warning – you’ll want to set aside time to watch Buzz doting on Briar Rose, too cute for words!

It’s safe to say they’re both big fans of treats, Briar Rose especially and Buzz is her willing accomplice in procuring nibbles out of any generous hand. As a result, they've become a slightly portly pair. If you have a will of steel and the ability to resist four of the most imploring eyes we’ve ever seen, you could be the perfect family to get this compact couple back in shape.

Come lounge around with Buzz and Briar Rose in Lynnwood, WA today – once you do, we’re sure you’ll realize that two is most definitely better than one.

Is your future playmate patiently waiting at PAWS?

Volunteer and help find loving forever homes for animals in our care.

Already found your perfect canine companion? Take part in PAWSwalk together and raise funds to help us continue providing care for adorable adoptables like Briar Rose and Buzz.


By Jen Mannas, Naturalist

You probably know by now that PAWSwalk is our biggest fundraiser of the year. You probably also might think that it only helps PAWS rescue thousands of cats and dogs. But did you know it also helps care for thousands of wild animals too?

Each year, PAWS Wildlife Center cares for over 3,000 wild animals from as many as 260 different species. Our main goal is to rehabilitate sick, orphaned and injured animals so that they can be released and become a functioning member of their wild populations once again. To do that, we rely on the donations raised at PAWSWalk every year.

Wildlife at PAWS - August 2014

Today, we are caring for over 200 patients at PAWS Wildlife Center. This summer alone, we have taken in and helped River Otters, Bald Eagles, American Robins, Virginia Opossums and Eastern Cottontails, a Bobcat, Harbor Seals, Mallard Ducks, Hummingbirds, Raccoons, owls, deer, a frog, weasels, swifts and many many many more. In, fact some of the animals in our care have made the news, and another one has been part of an ongoing story.

All of these animals come to us with different needs; from the food they eat, to the habitat they live in, to the medical attention they need, to the amount of time they will be in our care. PAWSwalk helps us support these needs by providing the funds to purchase food, medication, and medical supplies as well as upkeep facilities so we can continue to help these amazing creatures.

Because of PAWSwalk - and PAWSwalkers like you - we have been able to rehabilitate and release hundreds of animals this summer including River Otters, a Western Screech Owl, grown birds from our baby bird nursery, orphaned opossums and squirrels, a Peregrine Falcon, a Creeping Vole, and a Townsend’s Chipmunk, just to name a few.

With the support from people like you who join in our annual PAWSwalk we are able to continue helping animals of all kinds. So, register for PAWSwalk today and come join us at King County's Marymoor Park in Redmond, WA on September 6th! It’s a great way to have fun and raise money for animals. It will be a wild time!

Want to help care for wildlife at PAWS year round? Volunteer.

Help us to continue providing a safe haven for rehabilitating wildlife - make a donation.


By Jen Mannas, Naturalist

Late summer is a bustling time of year for gulls in the Seattle area and here at PAWS. People are seeing them more readily now and finding injured birds as adult gulls are out gathering food for their hungry chicks.

Gulls are often referred to as seagulls lumping all of the species together. However, there are

actually 19 different species of gulls that live in North America, 14 of which spend part of the year in

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Herring Gull - sub-adult

Washington. The term seagull is also very misleading as this suggests they only live near the ocean when in fact many species of gulls live, feed and nest inland. An example of this is the ring billed gull which is very common in eastern Washington.

 

Gulls nest in densely packed colonies and lay their eggs either directly on the ground or in a small nest bowl.The chick’s eyes are open and they are very mobile when they hatch; they are even capable of leaving the nest shortly after hatching. Gulls are very protective parents and will dive bomb potential predators to keep them away from their chicks. If you see healthy chicks that appear to be alone one of their parents is probably nearby watching and it is best to stay away.

Gulls are fantastic fliers and can actually float motionless in the air when looking for food. Gulls can eat just about anything including insects, small fish, other birds and small mammals. They also act as nature’s cleanup crew by scavenging on dead animals and other organic litter which can pose health threats to humans. Gulls are resourceful, smart, and very adaptable. Many species have learned to live and thrive in conjunction with humans, some species have been documented using objects as tools, they have a very complex method of communication and they have a highly developed social structure.

Glaucous Winged Gull chick
Glaucous Winged Gull chick

We have several gulls, from two different species, in our care at the PAWS. They are at different stages of development from very small chicks up to adults. This requires different levels of care from all of our staff and volunteers as they await their return to the wild.

 

Fun Fact: Most adult gulls have a red spot at the tip of their bill, newly hatched chicks use this spot as a target and will peck at it stimulating their parents to feed them.

Want to help care for wildlife at PAWS? Volunteer.

Help us to continue providing a safe haven for rehabilitating wildlife - make a donation.


By Kellie Benz, PAWS Staff

Sometimes, what we’re looking for is right in front of us. We’ve had a lot of visitors to PAWS lately, all walking through our Lynnwood and Cat City locations searching for their perfect companions. Many have left with their new best friend, and we’re always so proud to know we helped to build that family.

As always, our ‘Adorable Adoptables’ stories cover two companion animals who – despite all of their eager tail wagging or welcoming purrs – can’t seem to attract their perfect human. The volunteers who see them every day; those who walk them and brush them, those who cuddle them, who settle their nerves and soothe their yearning hearts, know how precious and loving these little beings are and they know how deserving they are of potential adopters’ attention.

So we hope our tales of their true personality, will encourage you to take a second look. Celeste3 - Aug 3 - 2014 - Kbenz

This week’s feline adorable adoptable is the always sophisticated miss Celeste. Regal and elegant, and mighty choosy of those worthy of her attention, lovely lady Celeste is a looker with a crooked ear. The ear, a tiny blemish on her otherwise model-perfect good looks, gives a hint to her life lived. A Siamese/mix of 10 years with a light brindle coat – and if you’re lucky enough to see them – sparkling sapphire blue eyes. We say lucky, because Celeste doesn’t let just anyone see the true glimmer of her dazzling personality.

Grumpy Cat might look the part, but Celeste is the real persnickety feline deal. Celeste doesn’t suffer fools gladly, so you may be able to attract her attention for a playful swat at one of her favorite toys, but you’ll have to win her heart if you want anything more. And she’s got oodles of affection waiting for you! Celeste isn’t interested in a fast pace, busy home. She’d like a quiet, adult only environment where she can thrive and feel like someone special’s one and only. Celeste's adoption fee is waived until September, so don’t put off meeting her at our downtown Seattle Cat City today!

Over in doggy world, at our Lynnwood Companion Animal location, Reba awaits her true forever home. Adopted once then left behind in a divorce dispute, Reba is pure love in a very compact body.

She’s been at PAWS longer than most and we don’t know why she keeps getting passed over. She’s friendly and welcoming to anyone who approaches her. She’s quick to break out her great big smile with every greeting and eager to show you her fluorescent orange ball, in the hopes that you’ll know how to play!

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A mix of Australian Cattle Dog, Terrier and American Put Bull, this shorty-with-a-story deserves a second look. All of 9 years old, her affection is undeniable and all of the volunteers coo over her easy personality and well behaved walking etiquette. With eons of energy and an affinity for car rides, Reba is a co-pilot in waiting for the right active adventurer.

In her quietest moments, she’s a lapdog extraordinaire and knows exactly how to curl up for an afternoon nap. Reba respects her feline friends, but wouldn’t want to live with one. She’d rather be dashing off to a regular weekend road trip!

Are you the ideal human that Celeste or Reba are waiting for?

Is your future playmate patiently waiting at PAWS?

Volunteer and help find loving forever homes for animals in our care.

Help us continue to provide care for all our adorable adoptables.


By Jen Mannas, Naturalist

Leaving home can be scary and a hard thing to do for humans but imagine you are a four week old baby owl (owlets) leaving your nest cavity, high up in a tree, for the first time.

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Owl fledglings are not great fliers at first; for the first five or six weeks out of the nest they hop from branch to branch or take short flights following their parents. During this time owlets can fall to the ground where they stay under a close eye of their parents until they get off of the ground. Sometimes these falls result in an injury and the owlet may not be able to make it back to safety.

This is what happened to a Western Screech Owlet in Redmond. He was found in a driveway by the homeowners one June morning not moving or vocalizing. When he was still in the same spot later that evening they assumed something was wrong. They scooped him up and brought him to PAWS. In our Wildlife Center, he was unable to stand very well and was putting all of his weight on his left leg.

After examining his x-rays PAWS' veterinarian team determined he had a broken right leg. They promptly put a splint on it and placed him under observation to monitor him for any nerve damage in his right foot. After only a few days he was standing on both legs again and could partially flex his right toes. Within two weeks, of his arrival at PAWS, the splint was removed and he was placed in an outdoor enclosure where we continued to monitor his grasping ability.

After 24 more days of cage rest he was able to successfully fly and grasp his perches with both feet. On July 17, at sunset, he was released back to his forest in Redmond where he found safety amongst the trees.

Want to help care for wildlife at PAWS? Volunteer.

Help us to continue providing a safe haven for rehabilitating wildlife - make a donation.