The RASKCAL Reporter | Issue 31| September 2019


In this Issue:                                                                                            September 2019

RASKC recognizes Volunteer of the Month Tiffany Morin


Meet Tiffany! RASKC is incredibly happy to honor Tiffany Morin, one of RASKC’s most outstanding volunteers. She serves as the Co-Lead of RASKC’s Pet Publicist Team.  And she volunteers on weekly shifts in RASKC’s Vet Clinic and with RASKC cats at Covington Petco. Additionally Tiffany regularly helps with families with young children at Seattle Meowtropolitan Cafe.  She serves on our Cat Meet and Greet team at the shelter. And Tiffany leads tours at RASKC, and she sometimes helps lead new volunteer orientation too.  Tiffany has contributed over 865 hours since she began at RASKC in 2017 (Thank you, Tiffany!)

To read an interview with Tiffany, go to our website or blog.   

If you are interested in becoming a RASKC volunteer, go here to register for new volunteer orientation.

Limelight shines on outstanding new volunteer Lavanya Murugesan


Meet Lavanya!  This very skillful and dedicated volunteer started as a “blue” Dog Walker at RASKC last year. Lavanya Murugesan ascended to top “red” status two months later, then began mentoring new volunteers. The conscientious, detailed feedback that Lavanya consistently provided on her trainees led RASKC to offer her an additional promotion- to serve as one of the first Dog Walker skills assessors.

She said, “I am surrounded by an incredible team of folks who are compassionate, kind, passionate and are willing to jump in and help in any way. And not to forget, the puppers - they are incredible creatures with unique personalities who give me lots of joy just to be around them.”

Born in India, Lavanya initially moved to Alaska for college. She said, “Moving from a hot, humid, highly populated Chennai, Tamil Nadu to cold, snowy, sparsely populated Anchorage, Alaska was a huge culture shock on many fronts. I had never seen snow in my life until I came to Alaska. Getting used to the long Alaskan summers and learning to fish salmon was very fun.” An electrical engineer with a master’s degree, Lavanya also has gone through 200 hours of training to become a certified yoga instructor.

Lavanya knows a thing or two about making a commitment to volunteering. When she lived in San Diego, Big Brothers and Big Sisters of America matched Lavanya with an 11 year-old girl. What started out as a year’s commitment has continued to an active friendship through the present day- 16 years later!

Lavanya describes herself as “an ordinary gal trying to live a mindful life where I can enjoy and appreciate all that life has to offer. I enjoy being active, hiking in the nature, volunteering at the shelter, cooking and sharing a healthy home-cooked meal, yoga, and connecting with pen pals in the old-fashioned way- writing letter with pen and paper. I am curious and constantly trying to learn something new.”

In the midst of her initial Dog Walker training, she adopted a one year-old Mastiff/ Lab mutt from RASKC (pictured with Lavanaya). She says that her dog “continues to be a happy pupper and a people pleaser. I am SO grateful for RASKC, because I now have my co-pilot, best friend for life!”

What’s happening @ RASKC

KIRO 7 features RASKC Dog Walker Jennifer Jewell


Last week KIRO 7 featured RASKC “red” Dog Walker Jennifer Jewell when highlighting the extra efforts that RASKC goes to place difficult-to-adopt animals in new homes. Jennifer shared her story about adopted pup Mana. This dog had struggled in the shelter and seemed like an unlikely candidate to find an immediate home. Through the dedication of RASKC staff and volunteers, Mana’s behavior began to improve. He got adopted into a wonderful home. New RASKC programs like dog playgroups, kennel enrichment, and behavior fostering are helping animals find their new homes even faster.

Click here to view the video, which was produced to help promote KIRO 7’s Project Paws event that took place yesterday in Bellevue.

If you are interested in fostering, click here for details, with an option to register, for new volunteer orientation/ foster training.

Warm 106.9’s “You Lucky Dog” event benefits RASKC

lucky dog

RASKC sends HUGE THANKS to Warm 106.9 and DJ Heather for their strong support of our agency.  Yesterday Heather hosted the “You Lucky Dog” pet-photo event and pet-food drive in Renton that was sponsored by Warm 106.9 and The Landing.

For over a year DJ Heather has been coming to RASKC every month for Wet Nose Wednesday promotions. Go to Warm 106.9’s Facebook page to see a video documenting a fun adventure that DJ Heather hosted earlier this month with one year-old Boxer/ Bullie mix siblings Miley and Noah, along with RASKC volunteers Lisa Clair and Haley Heggenes.  

Pleased as a peacock to announce…


RASKC welcomes baby and mama peacocks. Earlier this week RASKC Animal Control Officers Cherise Sanchez and Val Fetters responded to an unusual call about loose peacocks. Neighbors in east King County complained about the birds trespassing in a swimming pool and creating a stir otherwise. The birds were brought to RASKC for safekeeping until arrangements can be made with their owner to ensure that they stay would not stray from home.

Celebrate baby Maeverly! RASKC offers immense congratulations to Animal Care Technician Tati Miller and RASKC Animal Control Officer Chris Miller. Their baby Maeverly was born last month. Tati and Chris will be on parental leave until November. We are hoping their baby will become a RASKC volunteer in about nine years!

Congratulations and fond farewell to Nileen Garrett. We salute Nileen, who has accepted a promotion from Animal Care Technician in Kent to King County Customer Service Specialist III in downtown Seattle. We’ll miss you, Nileen!

Say “hi” to RASKC at the Sea-Meow Convention


RASKC congratulates the Seattle Meowtropolitan Café for hosting the first ever Sea-Meow Convention, which will be taking place at the Seattle Center during the weekend of October 26-27 from 10 a.m.- 5 p.m..

The event organizers aim to bring people together to celebrate and help cats.

For more information with the option to purchase tickets ($15- $40 plus tax and fees), click here. We hope to see you there!

ASPCA locates disaster-response equipment at RASKC


RASKC recently reached an agreement with the ASPCA for assistance in the event of a disaster. RASKC agrees to allow two ASPCA trailers and a truck to be located on our property. This aids tremendously in rapid deployment. Our Kent location is the only place in the Pacific Northwest where ASPCA’s disaster-response equipment is located. Previously it would take up to 30 hours for this specialized gear to arrive from other regions.

The large ASPCA trailer contains a boat, two boat motors, wildfire gear, shelter supplies, kennels, animal-rescue equipment, generators, fans, coolers, lighting, and equipment to aid in animal-cruelty investigations. The trailer can also be used as a location to treat and house animals. The other trailer stores large animal-rescue equipment, shelter supplies, and two heavy-duty wenches.

It’s important to be prepared! Click here for information from RASKC and the American Red Cross on pet disaster- preparedness.

Happy Tails: Pet parents’ patience rewards cat Thor


RASKC extends thanks to Rebecca for this Happy Tail. She wrote, “This is Sampson aka Thor at adoption on June 1 of this year. He was nine weeks old. It was a rough transition on one of our other two cats. I almost brought him back to RASKC after a couple of weeks, because our three year-old Ziva was so upset.

“But my husband told me to be patient and reminded me that when we brought him home, we made a commitment that he would be part of our family. Eventually Ziva figured out if she stood her ground and didn’t run from him, that Thor would learn to respect her. He just wants to play! She does play with him now- on her terms.

“He is definitely the Red personality and still has issues with boundaries. He is so naughty in the most wonderful ways. We love him so much!”