(corrected) The RASKCAL Reporter| Issue # 43| September 2020

The RASKCAL Reporter

In this Issue:                                                                                            September 2020

RASKC honors Volunteer of the Month: Laura Weeks


Meet Laura! RASKC is extremely pleased to honor foster volunteer Laura Weaks as Volunteer of the Month. For each of the past two years, she has contributed well over 2,000 hours. In fact, last year Laura contributed more than 2,600 hours. Since she began with RASKC in 2016, Laura has contributed over 6,800 hours: Absolutely amazing! Not only does Laura provide loving care to a large number of RASKC animals, she engages in other very thoughtful actions to help the shelter. For example, a few years ago, Laura took the initiative to purchase a large ad in the Cascade View Elementary auction, then donated the space for RASKC messaging. Thanks for all that you do, Laura!

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

If you are interested in becoming a foster volunteer, RASKC is ready to onboard you. Click here and scroll down to the Getting Started section. Click on the plus sign, then watch training modules #1, #2, and #4 and answer the quiz questions. Complete an online application. If you are an adult, complete RASKC’s liability waiver. We look forward to working with you!

Limelight shines on Exceptional Youth Volunteer Natalie Quincy


Meet Natalie! RASKC is super happy to award Natalie Quincy with Exceptional Youth Volunteer recognition. Super reliable, Natalie has contributed close to 170 hours so far, serving on our Cat Meet & Greet Team, along with her mom Nesa. They began volunteering in 2018.

Much earlier this year, Natalie and Nesa, along with two other volunteers, received written kudos from then Animal Care Technician Emily Ruppert.

Natalie is in tenth grade at Kentwood High School. Her family includes four humans and more than six pets- two dogs, four cats, and a myriad of fish- all rescues, of course. Mom Nesa works as a veterinarian!

Natalie has been involved in the Interact Club at school, a club focusing on community service. She is also interested in photography.   

Nesa said, “This summer has been like no other for many reasons, as we know, and Natalie has had her eyes open to all the social issues especially those pertaining to her African American heritage.  As her mom, I am so proud of her independence and her passion for what she believes in.”

“Natalie and I want to take all the kitties home, of course....but our house is currently full! We miss dearly our Friday afternoons but appreciate RASKC trying to keep us safe and look forward to when we can start up again!”

RASKC staff misses working with all scheduled volunteers, especially Natalie and Nesa : )

What’s happening @ RASKC

RASKC co-hosts World Rabies Day event at Showare on Sept. 26


RASKC is partnering with One Health Clinic and Rabies Free Africa to co-host a World Rabies Day event at the ShoWare Center in Kent this Saturday, September 26, from 1pm- 4pm. Free rabies vaccines will be administered, and pet-food donations will be distributed.

Several local groups are hosting similar events in Puget Sound on the same day. Seattle Humane will be sponsoring an event in North Bend from 1pm- 4pm. The Doney Coe Pet Clinic and Seattle Animal Shelter are sponsoring an event in the Trupanion parking lot from 1pm- 4pm in Seattle’s SODO neighborhood. The Rainier Animal Fund will be sponsoring an event in southeast Seattle from 11am- 2pm.

According to the Washington State University’s Paul G. Allen School for Global Animal Health website, “Rabies is one of the deadliest diseases on the planet. Canine-mediated human rabies has the highest case fatality rate of any known infectious disease. Each year an estimated 59,000 people die from rabies, with over 99% of the cases contracted from a dog bite. The deaths are mostly in Africa, India and other parts of Asia and one-half of the deaths occur in children under the age of 15.

“WSU’s Allen School is working with international partners to eliminate rabies as a cause of human suffering and death as part of the Zero by 30 initiative. Combining game-changing vaccine research with community-based programs, WSU leads in development and deployment of the strategies needed to eliminate rabies.”

Mobile pet-food bank travels to Maple Valley on Sept. 28


The mobile pet-food team that RASKC participates in will travel to Maple Valley on Monday, September 28, from 11am- 2pm to serve community members at Tahoma High School. Distributions will also take place at the ShoWare Center in Kent from 1pm- 4pm, on Saturday, September 26.

The team distributed supplies in Shoreline and Auburn earlier this month.

For more information, go to www.kingcounty.gov/petassistance

KeepingFinn helps our mobile pet food-bank & visits our event!


National social-media phenom Henry Friedman and his famous rescue-dog Finn visited our mobile pet food-bank in Shoreline earlier this month. Their organization also made a generous contribution to the joint mobile pet-food bank!

KeepingFinn has over 186,000 followers on Instagram (@keepingfinn) and contributes about $12,000 each month to underrepresented shelters. 

RASKC Interim Animal Services Coordinator Emily Ruppert interviewed Henry and Finn; click here for the video!

Happy Tails: “Foster failure” Striper enjoys love for 11 years


In most situations, foster volunteers get “first dibs” on adopting the RASKC animal in their home. When volunteers adopt their foster pet, it’s jokingly referred to as a “foster failure.”

Former foster mom Kat sent us this update: "This is Striper! I was taken as a foster in July of 2009 at five weeks old. Well, I'm definitely a foster failure! I am now 11 years old and loving the spoiled life! Thank you for all you do!"

Thank you, Kat! We love to hear from adopters. If you have #HappyTails to share, email us your story and photos at pets@kingcounty.gov.

Two partner cafés welcome back cats and the public


Two of the local cat cafes that offer RASKC cats for adoption have re-opened their cat lounges with COVID protections. They are eager for to you to enjoy a beverage and the cats. Online reservations are strongly recommended.

The cat lounge at Seattle Meowtropolitan Café is open six days a week from 11am- 5pm.

NEKO, A Cat Café is open both in Seattle and Bellingham every day. Hours vary.

What a great way to brighten one’s day!

Metro offers free $25 ORCA card to many in SE King County


King County Metro began updates to bus service in south King County yesterday, September 19, in order to make essential trips easier with new routes, to increase efficiency, and to improve schedules. Check out the Quick Start Guide to see the changes and tips for traveling safely at kingcounty.gov/GetReady.

A bus stop is conveniently located right in front of RASKC for bus route 180.

King County Metro says, “If you live or work in Renton, Kent, Auburn, Burien, SeaTac, Tukwila, or Des Moines, you can save money riding updated bus routes. Just fill out this form to request a free $25 ORCA card. Using an ORCA card makes transferring between buses and other transit services easy and ensures you pay the lowest price for your trip.”

Would you like to donate? Operation Well Wishes


If you would like to make a special donation to support RASKC’s efforts with the pet-food banks, please donate gift cards.

If you would like to make a special donation to RASKC from our Amazon wish list, click here.

Our dog program would love to receive long leads, about 20- 50 feet or longer. 

Our foster program would love to receive meat-based Gerber baby food; kitten playpens at least four feet across with zippers (not Velcro); snuggle kitties with a battery-generated heartbeat; Miracle Nipples, both sizes; and pet food or cat litter for our Pet Treasure Chest.

For more information about donations or in-kind gifts, visit the Donations page on our website.

Staff Profile: Jacey Zitterich, Animal Care Tech


Meet Jacey! She has been working at RASKC as an Animal Care Technician for more than a year. She’s wonderfully friendly and fun to work with!

Tell us about yourself. I am 25 years old and have been working with animals for the last five or six years! Currently I have two black Labradors named Kody and Roxy; Kody is my baby who I adopted from here at the shelter about four years ago. Roxy is my boyfriend’s dog, but she prefers me over him. 😊 

All four years of high school, I was a part of a combined dance team between two rival schools. I was captain for three of the four years. During my senior year I made All American and had the opportunity to travel to London to march in the New Year’s parade. I’ve also had the pleasure of qualifying for national competitions for dance at Disneyland. Our team, between junior varsity and varsity, brought home two second-place wins and one first-place win!

Why did you decide to work at an agency that helps animals? I love working at RASKC. Of course, there are always good days and bad days, but when you have a passion to work with animals- your job becomes more of a hobby that you get to do every day! The best part of the job here is watching pets reunite with their families and getting the opportunity to help not only a family find their perfect fit but also helping the pet find a perfect fit too. It’s never a bad day when you get to come in and give unconditional love that some of the pets here have never had. Watching the transformation from when they come in to when they leave is what gets me out of bed every morning to come here.

What did you do prior to coming to RASKC? I started my career with animals at the Sumner emergency veterinary clinic where I worked for more than three years. I actually started there as an extern from PIMA Medical Institute. I worked my way up to a leadership role. After about a year and a half, I decided that I wanted to try a different career path with animals. That is how I ended up here at RASKC.

My first job ever was at Coldstone Creamery where I made ice cream for about two or three years. During the last year or so, I managed a Coldstone Creamery and worked part-time at Costco wholesale.

What do you like to do when you’re not at work? If I’m not at work, I’m probably at home dancing with my dogs and listening to music!

Fun fact: I hate the feeling of grass. There is something about grass that makes my skin crawl when I touch it.

Pet of the Week: Benji


Meet Benji! Benji is a handsome, high-energy one year-old male Australian Cattle Dog mix (A619146). This sweetie was brought to RASKC last month. He would do best in a home with adults or maybe also with older kids who are dog savvy.

Benji has so much potential to become an amazing and loyal companion. He needs someone who is dedicated to working with him consistently.

Rated “red,” Benji is independent and incredibly intelligent. He hasn’t always been provided with enough opportunities to expand his brilliance. As a result, in the past he has misdirected some of his energies by chewing on things or using his mouth to communicate. Benji is extremely food motivated and is very interested in being rewarded with treats for learning new positive behaviors. He loves agility and mental stimulation too. Getting a lot of exercise is great for Benji.

While Benji enjoys being petted a bit, he is not interested in being hugged or being touched for long periods of time.

Benji is neutered, current on vaccinations, and microchipped. His adoption also comes with a free visit to the veterinarian of your choice, and 30 days of opt-in pet insurance through Trupanion.

You can find out more about Benji on RASKC’s website at www.kingcounty.gov/adoptapet. Scroll down the page and insert his name. You may meet this dog and up to two other animals by scheduling an appointment through our website. If you need assistance, contact us at 206-296-7347 (PETS), pets@kingcounty.gov.

Community Happening


Sponsored by the King County Library System, “We the People Panel Discussion- How the Constitution has served marginalized communities,” is taking place this Tuesday, September 22, from 7pm- 8:30pm. This event is free, but online registration is needed. For more information, click here.

Contact RASKC


Thanks for all that you do to help animals!

If you have any questions regarding volunteering, general animal services or suggested topics for future eNewsletter editions, contact us at pets@kingcounty.gov or 206-296-7387.

Stay informed! Missed our last eNewsetter? Check out our archives page!