What’s happening at the Orcas Animal Shelter

  • Mon Mar 15th, 2021 1:30am
  • News

Submitted by the Orcas Animal Shelter.

Pet of the month

Savannah is a one-year-old mutt. We suspect there may be some Brittany Spaniel in there somewhere. She is an absolute diva and is full of personality. Though she gets along well with other dogs, she would love to have all of the attention and isn’t afraid to let you know it. She was transferred to our shelter from Whatcom County Humane. When she arrived we suspected she was pregnant and sent her to a foster home to have her puppies. After some time went by, we discovered she was experiencing a false pregnancy. She is now back at the shelter and spayed, ready for her forever home. Savannah will need a low impact life with a family that is devoted to helping her stay at her ideal weight of 22#. This girl is an absolute doll and she knows it!

If you would like more information on Savannah, complete an adoption request at

Is that stray cat fixed?

We have started to see an increase in stray and feral cats on Orcas. We know that it may be nice to have that visiting cat hanging around catching mice, but do you know how quickly just one unfixed female cat can create a problem in your area? Feral cats can carry diseases and may be aggressive, putting your own pets in danger. One unspayed female, her mate and all of their offspring can produce up to two litters per year, with 2.8 surviving kittens per litter. This could mean 11,801 unwanted cats in your area in just five years’ time.

Orcas APS is here to help. If you have an unknown cat hanging out in your area, please call the shelter to make arrangements to bring it in.

For friendly cats, we are able to scan the cat for a microchip. Microchips are often the best option for reuniting a lost cat with an owner. If there is no microchip, we will safely shelter and advertise the cat while searching for an owner. If an owner does not come forward, the cat will be given a wellness check by our veterinarian, tested for feline diseases, flea treated, wormed, fully vaccinated, spayed or neutered, and treated for any known medical issues before finding a new forever home.

For not-so-friendly cats, the shelter will instruct you on how to catch it and even loan you a trap. Once the cat has arrived at the shelter in the trap, we will follow the same procedures as we would for a friendly cat. Should the cat be found to be feral and unable to be safely adopted out, the cat will be returned to the area it was found if it is decided it is safe to do so. Feral cats are ear-tipped at the time of spay or neuter so that they may quickly be identified as a fixed cat and do not need to be recaptured.

Your donation to Orcas APS supports this program that reduces the number of unwanted feral cats in our community. Donate here:

Shelter updates

Along with the pets highlighted below, we were able to provide safe shelter for one stray dog and one Team Safe cat. The dog is now available for adoption and the cat has since been returned to the owner.

Mr. Tux was released to the shelter by his owner. He is a stunning eight-year-old long-haired Tuxedo. This boy is really a gentle giant. He would love a quiet home with someone who would enjoy brushing him and giving him lots of pets.

Ziggy was left in our parking lot and has not been claimed by his owner after multiple attempts at contact. This sweet little man is approximately 12-years-old. His vision is poor and we suspect he only sees life in shadows. He is also in need of some dental work that we would like to take care of before sending him into his new home. Ziggy would love a lap to sit on and a home that will give him lots of love.

Should you find yourself in a position where you are no longer able to care for your cat or dog, please contact the shelter at (360) 376-6777 to discuss your options.

A Sammy update

When we introduced you to Sammy last month, he had only been with us a couple of weeks after being transferred in from Whatcom County Humane. We were still unable to touch him and he spent all of his time hiding in his kennel. Our very special shelter is the perfect place for dogs like Sammy. Being a smaller facility, we have the time, patience and dedication it takes to turn a dog like this around.

We are happy to announce that in the last couple of weeks, we have seen great progress in Sammy’s ability to trust. He will take treats from our hand, we are able to give him pets, he is going outside to play and go potty, and he loves the other dogs at the shelter. Sammy would like a home that will give him time to trust his new people. He would love to have a playmate of similar size and energy level. Sammy is a little ball of fire once he gets going and can play hard. It is so rewarding to see a dog like Sammy come out of his shell and become his true self.

Looking to adopt?

View our adoptable pets at to see if we have the perfect match waiting for you. If you are interested in meeting one of our shelter cats or dogs, please complete an adoption request on our website. We will review your request and contact you to discuss our adoption process and answer any additional questions you may have.

More of our special shelter pets awaiting their forever homes.

How you can help

We are still very busy here at the shelter providing services to those in our community and adjusting to our new safety protocols as state and county rules are announced. The care of the shelter animals never stops. We appreciate your support in making sure the animals entrusted to us receive the best care possible. The shelter is currently operating by appointment only. This has been a wonderful way for us to spend time with visitors and provide our undivided attention to answer questions. Call (360) 376-6777 to set up an appointment. We require all indoor visitors to wear masks. Keeping everyone safe, we allow for two guests at a time.

If you are aware of a pet that is not receiving proper care, we can often help you address the situation by offering assistance to an owner.

If you are having a difficult time working through behavioral issues with a pet, we are happy to offer training suggestions or point you to the resources that can help.

If you have a stray cat or dog visiting your home, we can provide warm shelter and assist with locating their family. If you suspect that the animal is a feral cat we can loan you a trap, provide recommended veterinary care and release it back into familiar territory.

As many families continue struggling to feed themselves and their pets, we ask that you consider making a donation at Pawki’s for Pets to support the purchase of pet food for the Orcas Food Bank. The food bank will also accept your donations of unopened pet food for families in need. Visit Pawki’s to learn more about welcoming your newly adopted pet home with a FREE bag of food (up to 6 lbs.).




Mr. Tux.

Mr. Tux.

Sammy now.

Sammy now.