As we approach the holiday season, we have much to celebrate and be thankful for here at PAWS.
Not surprisingly, 2010 has been a year full of new and joyous homecomings, not only for the animals, but for our dedicated staff and volunteers as well. For the animals released from our care, home could be anywhere—like a forest in Tenino, Washington where a deer PAWS released in 2007 was recently spotted with a fawn of her own! (page 6) It could be Washington, D.C. where Barry, who at four years old took his very first step outside to come to PAWS, now enjoys regular romps at the off-leash dog park. (page 13)
Perhaps my favorite homecoming of the year, though, was the release of a Great Horned Owl in September (right). I had the privilege of witnessing this young owl's return to the same forest where he was rescued, and hearing the call of his fellow owls as he flew to meet them. He was home.
This summer, our humane educators designed a unique program for sight-impaired children who reminded us of the many different ways we can enjoy this beautiful world. (page 5)
It is moments like these that remind me how grateful I am for PAWS and for supporters like you. As you read the stories enclosed in this issue, I hope you will see the impact of your support and feel the joy of these successes along with us.
Unfortunately, more animals in need of care continue to come through PAWS' doors every day. Over the last year, we have seen a dramatic increase in the number of cats and dogs coming to us as unwitting victims of the economy. These animals are often suffering from neglect, starvation, and lack of medical care.
Thanks to you, PAWS continues to be a beacon of hope for animals across the state. We are people helping animals, and vice versa.
Wishing you and yours a peaceful and joyous holiday season,
Above: In this photo, Annette quietly waits for the rehabilitated Great Horned Owl to fly off on his release day. The owl came into PAWS' care still a downy baby after he was found weak, anemic and in a state of shock in a Maltby forest. PAWS' wildlife veterinarian treated his anemia and the young owl grew strong during his stay at PAWS. After learning how to fly and refining his hunting skills in one of our specially built raptor pens, he was returned to the Maltby forest where he was found. After his release, Great Horned Owls, presumably his parents, could be heard hooting in the distance.