I am so excited to launch what I think will be one of my favorite pieces on the blog – the Animal Highlight Reel! I’m going to go ahead and give you a heads up now. I love animals – pets (especially dogs), farm animals, and wildlife. I am far from an expert, but I am dedicating myself to be a student of:

  • Animal Rehabilitation
  • Coexisting with our wildlife
  • Continuous education and training of our communities on animal rights and coexistence

I have the opportunity to volunteer as a Wildlife Care Assistant at PAWS once a week which is giving me the chance to learn a ton about animals! I hope to share the little tidbits of info I’m learning AND of course, share some of my top animal reads/videos of the week! You can always anticipate a good laugh (for a Monday pick-me-up) and the occasional heartstring pull.

Funny Animal Videos

Fabulous Ferrets

What It’s Like Figuring It Out as a Puppy

Interesting Washington Wildlife Info

Photo of male wolf trapped near Marblemount (Photo: Morrow, Alison)
  • First Western Washington Wolf – U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service received lab results confirming an animal collard in June is definitively a gray wolf! This is the first wolf on the west side of the Cascade range. You can read the story here. This led me to a little digging on gray wolves in Washington! Gray wolves are currently listed as endangered under the federal Endangered Species Act. By the early 1900s, after years of trapping and poisoning campaigns and government-sponsored bounties, wolves were eradicated from the U.S. Pacific Northwest. It wasn’t until the 1990s and early 2000s that wolves started coming back naturally to Washington from “coastal” gray wolf populations in British Columbia and “continental” gray wolf populations in Idaho and western Montana. Conservation groups in Washington are working on wolf recovery, conservation, and management – hoping that people, wolves, and wildlife can learn to live together. By the end of 2016, there were at least 115 wolves, 20 packs, and ten successful breeding pairs. You can read more about conservation efforts here.
  • Western Pond Turtle Rehabilitation – This was something I learned about at PAWS this week and wanted to pass it along! Did you know the western pond turtle is an endangered species? Some adult turtles in the wild are struggling with a shell disease, with the cause still unknown. WDFW biologists are capturing turtles that show the shell disease and transport them to PAWS for veterinary treatment (such as treating and cementing their shells back together). When deemed ready by veterinarians and WDFW biologists, the turtles are released back to their home habitat. Through these efforts, teams are trying different recovery methods and medicines while also searching for the cause. They’ve been able to determine fungus causes it but are still unsure of the type and how they are getting the disease.