April 2, 2008 

Improve Your Health---Adopt a Dog
Photo of a dog awaiting adoption.Studies have shown that people who share their homes with pets often have lower blood pressure, less stress and, overall, live longer, healthier lives. Here's your opportunity to meet some loyal and adorable health boosters at a free community event for parents and kids. PAWS will be on hand with several wonderful dogs available for adoption at the Mukilteo YMCA's Healthy Kids Day on Saturday, April 12 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. There will also be lots of events and games to help families become healthier in all aspects of their lives. The YMCA is located at 10601 47th Place West in Mukilteo. For directions, visit the YMCA's website or call 425.493.9622. In the meantime, check out some of the animals who are currently at PAWS waiting and hoping for new, loving homes.

Host a Gift Drive for Animals
You can help fill PAWS' cupboards with much-needed food and supplies by hosting a donation drive with friends, neighbors and co-workers. Right now we are stocking up to prepare for the hundreds of sick, injured, orphaned and homeless animals we'll receive this spring and summer. It's so easy to do with the instructions, a sample gift drive e-mail, and a printable/e-mailable, colorful spring wishlist all ready to go on PAWS' gift drive page. Get started today and thank you for helping the animals!

Meet Your Wild Neighbors
In honor of National Wildlife Week™ April 19 to 27, grab your friends and family and get outside to discover the

Photo of a Chestnut-backed Chickadee.
Chestnut-backed Chickadee
wildlife in your community! You'll be surprised that you don't have to wander too far from home, even in the city, to find a variety of winged, furry and even scaly wild animals, especially as many animals are returning to our area from their wintering sites in the south. Your backyard, neighborhood park and school grounds often provide perfect and important habitat for wild animals.

Learn about Washington's wildlife on PAWSkids.org or---as the sponsors of National Wildlife Week---on the National Wildlife Federation's website, then head out with binoculars and a camera, if you have them, and a notepad to write down your observations of what you find. Kids, you can also share with Riley Raccoon, PAWS' humane education ambassador, what you see by e-mailing him at Riley@paws.org. (Riley is the cartoon Raccoon you see on PAWSkids.org and on Kids Helping Animals newsletters---spring edition coming soon). Have fun!

Keep Your Baby from Having Babies
Did you know that a five-month-old kitten can have kittens of her own? Or that a cat can get pregnant several times in a year? Spring is the perfect time to spay your cat before you're surprised by an unexpected litter. Take advantage of PAWS' discounted rates on surgeries for low-income individuals, with special rates of $35 for cats and kittens (also includes a free microchip!). Learn more about PAWS' spay/neuter services.

Be Careful with that Cut
As you can discover for yourself during National Wildlife Week, Washington State is home to a wide array of wildlife species, many of whom make their homes in the forests and individual trees in the region—even those in our backyards. Many wild species, including cavity nesting owls, woodpeckers, native squirrels and bats, den in old or dead hollowed trees. A multitude of bird species' amazing nests grace thick limbs and tiny branches alike.

Photo of a Pileated Woodpecker.
Pileated Woodpecker

Now through September is the most active nesting months for Washington wildlife, when trees will be teeming with life. Pruning or cutting down trees during these months can displace, harm, or even kill a variety of wildlife species. PAWS receives hundreds of baby wild animals each year, many of whom are displaced when their nest tree is cut down or their nest site destroyed. Before pruning or cutting down any tree, whether it's alive or dead, please consider the following:

  • If possible, plan tree-cutting projects from November through January, which is well after nesting season.
  • Thoroughly inspect the tree for active nests before beginning work.
  • Consider cutting just the bare minimum of branches, leaving the nest section alone.
  • Standing dead trees (snags) make great habitat for wildlife, often housing several different species. If the tree does not present a hazard, please consider leaving it standing.
  • Many wildlife species are federally protected and the law prohibits destroying and/or disturbing their nests.
  • If a nest-bearing tree absolutely must be cut down, first call PAWS Wildlife Center at 425.787.2500 x 817. Our expert staff can give you tips on the best course of action to ensure the wild animals are not harmed.

Thank you for being careful!

Earth Day at IKEA
In celebration of Earth Day, IKEA will be hosting an environmental fair, April 19 and 20, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at their store in Renton. PAWS will be on hand to share information on native wildlife protection and rehabilitation, and the environmental benefits of a plant-based diet. Other participants will provide tips on creating your own compost with the assistance of wiggly worms, the chance to see the exciting world of plants and lichen through a microscope, and give away free reusable bags and other goodies. Bus, bike or carpool to IKEA and check it out!

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A Northwest leader in protecting animals since 1967, the Progressive Animal Welfare Society (PAWS) shelters homeless animals, rehabilitates injured and orphaned wildlife, and empowers people to demonstrate compassion and respect for animals in their daily lives.

All rights reserved. 2008 Progressive Animal Welfare Society