Dogtown: Meet Sparky and Rusko


Summer holidays are here and the living is easy, unless it is the Fourth of July and you are a cat or a dog. The Fourth and the days before and after can be a pretty traumatic time for your pets. It’s always a good idea to review a few safety tips about now. 

The first item on the list is to make sure your pets are wearing ID tags with current information.  Keep your pets securely inside; scary loud noises can send a dog escaping the yard that safely contains them every other day of the year. 

Even the dogs that don’t mind the noise (Hank is one of those) can be injured by stray sparks if they are outside when home fireworks are set off. 

Lots of folks leave the radio or TV on for some white noise in the house. CBD oil, thunder shirts or calming aids from the pet store can help, but consult your vet in advance if the Fourth causes very high anxiety for your dog or cat.

The county shelter is closed from the 3rd to the 5th of July but do still call and leave a message if your pet is lost or if you find a loose pet on those days. The number there is (707) 840-9132. 

It can be very helpful to send lost or found pet info to the Humboldt Paws Cause Facebook page as well. Many animals are reunited through the aid of social media.

In happier Fourth of July news, we are hoping to bring Sparky the Kinetic Foster Dog to Arcata’s Fourth of July Parade! 

Sparky is traditionally accompanied by adoptable dogs and we hope that a few will be allowed to join Sparky in this parade.


The parade starts at the Creamery at noon and proceeds up to the Plaza for a couple of laps. Come on out and cheer Sparky on!

One of the dogs that you might see at the parade is Rusko. Rusko is an easygoing two year old neutered male dog. He is friendly with other dogs and really loves a good game of fetch. 

Rusko walks well on the leash and only pulls when he sees the play yard (aka the fetching zone). 

He knows sit and some other commands and listens well. He hasn’t braved the wading pool yet but he is one of those dogs that will park his ball in the water while taking a drink! 

Come on up and say hi if you see Rusko in the parade; you can also meet him by calling the shelter at the number above and making an appointment.

Last year at this time we had reduced the shelter population to five dogs by recruiting fosters at the onset of the lockdown. That was such a successful program that we are initiating a summer version. 

If you might be interested in “borrowing” a dog for a bit and giving them a break from the shelter, please contact the shelter at (707) 840-9132 or email [email protected]. 

You can have the fun of a canine companion without the lifetime commitment! 

The only catch is that we ask that you be available to bring your foster to the shelter if a potential adopter schedules a meet and greet. 

Fosters would be given at least day’s notice and it would only be on a weekday. Feel free to email for more info.


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