Dogs

  • Dogs in Spokane County are required to be on a leash.  (Spokane County Parks Department) 

  • Letting a dog run at large, or having a threatening dog in a park carries an $87 fine. 
  • Owners of dogs without a license can be fined $200.
  • Failure to have a current rabies vaccination carries an $87 fine.

  • Dogs and cats get cold in severe temperatures, just like humans do.  A good rule to follow is, if the temperature is 20 degrees or less, dogs should have limited time outside.  Cats should not even be outside at all when temperatures are that low.

    When temperatures are above 20 degrees, it is important for animals outside to have a shelter.  To receive a free dog house, or to donate a new or gently used dog house, call SCRAPS at (509) 477-2532.  Advice from Spokane County Regional Animal Protection Services (SCRAPS). 

  • Spokane would like to say thank-you to Rick Freier and Mako, an arson dog which worked for the Spokane Valley Fire Department for 5 years.  Mako, a 6-year old black Labrador, who wore badge, #1K9, retired in July 2015.  Mako and his handler Fireman Rick Freier served not only Spokane but the entire region, serving 25 different agencies, and investigating 187 fires.  Mako would indicate where he detected an accelerant, and Freier would then collect a sample to be tested at the lab, resulting in 90% positive tests.  Mako, who was paid for by State Farm Insurance, could smell and detect as little as 1/20 of a drop, which made arson investigations quicker and easier.  Mako was known to many people who gathered around him at local community events.    ("Mako's New Trick, by Nina Culver, The Spokesman-Review, August 14, 2015)

  • Spokane would like to say thank-you to Spokane County Sheriff Cpl. Jeff Thurman and his K-9 Laslo.  Laslo, a 7-year old German shepherd, retired in February 2017 after spending 4 years assisting law enforcement in more than 470 apprehensions. Laslo was trained to respond to about 10 German commands.  Thurman said the dogs are indispensable partners in the effort to keep Spokane County safe, and keep the officers safer.  Deputies said Laslo was unusually talented at sniffing out crime, and he made contact with suspects with just the right amount of force.  Laslo was one of 5 dogs working for the Sheriff's Office, including a bomb-sniffing shepherd named Chloe.  (Laso, sheriff's K-9 who helped catch nearly 500 suspects, is retiring," by Chad Sokol, The Spokesman-Review, February 26 2017)

What You Can Do

  • One out of 3 cats and dogs in our country are overweight.  Dr. Kirk Breuninger, the lead veterinary researcher behind a study by Banfield Pet Hospital, says that, "Right now, one out of three cats and dogs are overweight.” 

    He attributes this increase to a number of factors: lack of exercise, too much food, and a changing attitude towards our pets.  That's a problem, because – just as in humans – lugging around all that extra weight can be hazardous to your pet's health.

    "We are starting to consider pets more and more to be members of our family, and we like to communicate with them and show our affection to them by offering them treats.  It can be pretty easy for us to offer too many treats in a single day to our pets."  But if Fido is too fat, or Fluffy is, well, too fluffy, there is something you can do about it.

    Breuninger says you can use this as a general guide:  Looking at your pet from above, he says you should see a distinct tuck at your dog or cat's waist.  And from the side, you should be able to easily feel – but not see – its ribs.  Dr. Breuninger says that simple things like cutting back on treats and ensuring that your dog gets in a walk each day will go a long way. 

    It's important to remember that each breed of cat and dog is different, so you should always consult a vet before you change their routine or their diet. "You know even taking a walk you get a chance to bond with your pet. It's just something simple as giving them more of a healthy diet." (Source:  Research finds 1 in 3 American cats and dogs are too plump, CBS This Morning, June 28, 2017)

  • Donate doghouses (new or slightly used) to animal shelters that will be given to pet owners in need.  
  • Children in elementary schools love to read to a listening dog, encouraging children to enjoy reading.  
  • License your pet - it’s the law.  Put an identification collar on your cat (or dog) to serve as your pet’s phone call home. 
  • Dog Parks.  Learn about local dog parks (see “Resources” below) and what is expected of both dogs and their owners.  Volunteers are needed to help  maintain dog parks.  http://spokaneparks.org/Parks/page/953/
  • Find a new home for your pet.  Local city and county laws no longer allow selling or giving away cats and dogs on either public property or private areas open to the public, including the front of a store, or the back of a pickup in a vacant lot.  For those outside the City of Spokane, the law also applies to selling or giving away animals at garage and yard sales. 

    People who want to sell or give away their animals may advertise in the newspaper.  The fine within city limits is $267; within the county it is $74 for the first violation, and $114 for the second fine; and a third violation within 12 months becomes a misdemeanor and could carry a $1,000 fine and as much as 90 days in jail. (This law may increase the homeless dog and cat population.) 

  • Could your dog be a blood donor?  Healthy donors are in great demand here in the Northwest.  Volunteer canine blood donors are wanted.  Like humans, our canine companions have urgent needs for transfusion products. Blood is a life-saving product used for patients suffering from anemia or blood loss.  A single blood donation can be used to save manylives, because the blood is processed into both red blood cells and plasma.

    The Pet Emergency Clinic in Spokane is currently looking for volunteer donors.  To be eligible to donate blood, your dog must -
    • must weigh at least 60#
    • between 1-6 years old
    • be happy and healthy
    • be willing to lie still for 10 minutes

    Donors should stay current on vaccinations with their regular veterinarian and commit to the program for two years or about 12 collections.  If you would like to learn more about the transfusion program and how your dog could be saving lives, please contact the Pet Emergency Clinic Blood Bank, 21 E. Mission, to schedule an appointment for a canine blood donor evaluation.  (509)  325-2322, 535-3551, or  326-6670
Local Organizations
Additional Resources

Double J Dog Ranch
Post Falls, ID 83877-3583
(208) 457-8600
http://www.doublejdogranch.org
A sanctuary for deaf, blind or special needs dogs.  They train dogs to be good pets. so they can be adopted into good families.  Many special needs dogs are euthanized at animal shelters.