Saturday, March 23, 2013

Seattle Humane Society Sets Records

Pet adoptions at the Seattle Humane Society reached a record 5,668 last year.
The nonprofit organization serving Issaquah and King County also returned 376 pets to owners or partner rescue groups.
The shelter in Bellevue reached a milestone 97.2 percent life-saving rate — among the highest in the nation for comparable shelters.
“We save lives and bring people and pets together, but we don’t do it alone,” Seattle Humane CEO David Loewe said in a statement. “Our community stands beside us every step of the way and we couldn’t do it without them.”
The organization’s clinic also performed more than 7,300 surgical procedures last year, including spaying and neutering for 2,606 pets through reduced-fee programs.

Kitsap Humane Society Needs Your Help!

When the Bremerton Police Department recently received an anonymous complaint about a small recreational trailer overrun with scores of cats and kittens, the first call they made was to Kitsap Humane Society’s Animal Control unit. Over a two-week period, KHS’ officers rescued 97 felines and took them to the shelter for medical care and preparation for adoption into new homes. Many of these cats already have been placed with new owners, while more await adoption.

This incident is a poignant example of the importance of a strong humane society in our community. KHS serves as a safety net for both people and animals, ensuring not only animal welfare, but public health and safety as well.

Your humane society is in critical need of continued strong financial support, through private donations, municipal animal control contracts, and citizens adopting animals in need.

Many people may not realize that KHS took in nearly 5,000 animals last year, including 2,579 strays. As an open admission shelter where no animal is turned away, KHS accepts both stray and owner-surrendered animals, as well as animals in distress recovered by its Animal Control unit.

KHS ensures that every animal admitted to the shelter is vaccinated and treated for parasites, ensuring the animals’ health and helping to control the spread of disease.  KHS also helps pet owners reclaim lost animals.  In 2012, 52% of all stray dogs brought to KHS were reunited with their owners .

KHS’ progressive animal welfare initiatives result in the vast majority of animals’ lives being saved. Many animals come to us wounded, sick and traumatized, but most of those are rehabilitated and adopted out with the help of skilled care, medical intervention and socialization provided by staff and volunteers. Euthanasia occurs about 6 percent of the time, when more severe medical or behavioral issues are present.

KHS sees a burgeoning animal population. The case of the 97 cats rescued in Bremerton is a dramatic case study of pet owners not being responsible about spaying/neutering their animals. KHS’ goal in 2013 is to increase spay/neuter surgeries from an all-time high of 3,751 in 2012 to 4,200. We can work with our community to prevent explosive population growth.

Our biggest challenge is financial sustainability.

With limited resources, KHS is remarkably efficient. We care for 25 percent fewer animals, yet operate with far less than half the budget of the Seattle Humane Society. But with the growing number of animals being brought in (we provided 108,000 days of care to animals last year) and the increasing number of spay/neuter surgeries being performed, KHS must generate about 10 percent more support from the community than last year.
Increasing donations is only one aspect of our three-business model. Second is running KHS with sound business practices, charging reasonable fees to surrender, adopt, reclaim or spay/neuter animals. Third, with more than 2,500 stray animals and nearly 2,000 animal control complaints received annually, it is critical that KHS maintain its’ funding via animal control contracts with Kitsap County, and Bremerton, Port Orchard, Bangor, Poulsbo and Port Orchard.

Just a year ago, KHS was at risk of falling apart. Many changes needed to be made to get the organization back on track and restore the community’s confidence.  Since then we have rebuilt the Board of Directors and management team; strengthened the Board-staff partnership; implemented needed improvements in management and governance recommended by an independent external audit; restored public confidence in KHS – raised 31 percent more funds over 2011; and addressed severe budget shortfalls to move KHS toward sustainability
We deeply thank our dedicated staff, volunteers, government partners and the thousands of Kitsap residents who support KHS by donating financially or adopting their family pets from KHS.

Yet, while much progress has been made, KHS (and the animals we save) still face significant challenges.
We know that people care deeply about animals and that we need to maintain a strong partnership with our community, combined with sound financial stewardship, to ensure that KHS is able to sustain its progressive mission. In the absence of that, the animals would be at risk.

Seattle Animal Shelter Offers Free Spay/Neuter

First, it’s surprising to learn there’s actually a World Spay Day, but what’s really interesting is that there’s actually a benefit to Seattle residents.
As part of World Spay Day, the Seattle Animal Shelter is offering free spay and neutering packages to Seattle dogs, cats, and rabbits. As Bob Barker would say, the goal is to help control the pet population.
Why should you care? Dogs, cats, rabbits and potbellied pigs adopted from the Seattle Animal Shelter are required to be licensed and spayed or neutered. Depending on the animal, that fee can range from $85 to $155.
The promotion was scheduled to run from Feb. 22 to March 1, but all the appointments have been booked. However, veterinary technician Jenny Chance said people who call can still get the deal through the month of March if they call the shelter at (206) 386-4260.
Getting a pet spayed or neutered reduces cancer risks, can help control behavior and reduces aggression, Chance said.
While there’s no Seattle residency requirement for the free offer, pets of Seattle residents must be currently licensed or a license can be purchased on the day of the appointment. For altered animals, a one-year license is $20 for cats and $27 for dogs, or a two-year license is $27 for cats and $37 for dogs.
Vaccinations are $10 each if needed. The free spay and neuter packages are made possible by the city’s Pet Population Control Fund, which provides year-round financial assistance to pet owners who cannot afford the cost of spaying and neutering.
Want to get a pet? Browse through the pictures of adoptable animals above or click here for more on the Seattle Animal Shelter.

Does Your Pet Need A Seatbelt?

You wouldn't let a family member ride in your car without wearing a seatbelt, so why is that OK for your dog? It's not.

"They become flying projectiles and when the car rolls, they're ejected just like humans are," says Dr. Marty Becker, with

Becker says having an unsecured pet is dangerous for the pooch and distracting to the driver.

"They need to either be in a carrier that's secured or they need to be in some kind of harness that secured to a seatbelt for their protection and for yours."

The safest place in that vehicle for your pet is the back seat. It's for the same reason it's the safest place for your baby: it's away from the passenger-side front air bag that explodes with such force that it can hurt a small child or pet in the front seat.

We all know dogs love to ride along with the heads out the window. Becker says that's a no-no.

"You've got to think of this: anything that's in the air - it doesn't have to be a rock, it can be a bug - when it hits their eyes at 60 miles per hour - it causes serious eye damage. So you can't have their heads sticking out the window."

Looking for a new vehicle? The editors at just released a list of the Top 10 Pet-Friendly Vehicles for 2013

For more information

Does My Dog Really Need a Seatbelt?

Pet Travel 101: What Every Savvy Dog Owner Should Know