12 Strays of Christmas: Sawyer needs a family able to deal with his epilepsy

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12 Strays of Christmas

We've partnered with the Whatcom Humane Society to offer holiday pet tips and profile 12 of their adoptable pets.

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Howl do you do! Meet Sawyer – a happy-go-lucky, 5-year-old male hound dog looking for new digs to call his own.

Sawyer loves everyone he meets. He is super affectionate, friendly and always up for a new adventure.

A typical hound, he will follow his nose wherever it might take him, so a fenced yard would be a good bet to keep him from wandering.

Sawyer is not afraid to use his rather loud voice to express what he is feeling. He would be an excellent karaoke partner.

Sawyer is a special needs dog. He has epilepsy, which is controlled by daily medicine. A new adopter will need to have the financial resources necessary to provide medicine and regular veterinary check ups to make sure Sawyer stays healthy.

If you are looking for a fantastic dog to love forever, visit the Whatcom Humane Society and meet Sawyer.

For more information about Sawyer, visit the Whatcom Humane Society, 2172 Division St., 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Wednesday-Saturday and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday-Monday or call 360-733-2080 or visit online at whatcomhumane.org.

Today’s tip: Giving animals as gifts

Ask any staff member or volunteer at the Whatcom Humane Society and they will tell you story after story of animals that were given as “gifts” for Easter or during the holidays, but soon after were relinquished to the shelter after the recipient realized they did not have the time, energy or resources to properly care for the animal.

Most people who give animals as “gifts” have the best of intentions, but have not thought through the reality of the situation.

An animal given to a person who is not able to properly care for it can create trouble for both the animal and the person.

Bringing an animal into a household should be a family decision, not a surprise. Families should consider the costs associated with the animal including food, supplies, training, grooming and veterinary care.

Carefully research the species and breed of the animal you are interested in adopting prior to visiting a shelter or contacting a breeder.

For those interested in a surprise “gift” purchase, consider instead a gift certificate for an animal adoption. The certificate can be included in a box along with supplies needed for the specific animal. The gift recipient can then visit the shelter at their convenience and adopt an animal that is a good match for their specific household and needs. It’s a win-win for both the adopter and animal.

Laura Clark is executive director of the Whatcom Humane Society.