Note: These resources are for informational purposes only. The Whatcom Humane Society does not endorse any one particular business or service.

Feral Cat TNR Services

To inquire about feral cat TNR services, please visit contact Spay Neuter Northwest at 360-812-5439 or

Financial Assistance Options for Pet Owners

Numerous financial assistance options are available to pet owners in Washington State.  The link below offers resources to help low income families with veterinary care and crisis relief.

Financial Assistance Options for Pet Owners

Service Animal or ESA?
Service Animals and Emotional Support Animals – Where are they allowed and under what conditions?

Frequently Asked Questions – Service Animals and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)

Renting with Pets
Zillow, Trulia, HotPads and Zumper – Pet friendly rentals in Whatcom County

Information for Renters with Pets ~ Resolve landlord issues and find housing for you & your pet

Pet Care in Condos & Apartments ~ Choosing the right pet for your space

Health & Safety

Prescription Medication Disposal  – how to safely dispose of unwanted and expired medicine

Pet-Safe House Plants – a guide to keep your pets safe

10 Reasons Why Your Dog is Licking his Paws – common allergies and treatments for your pet

Vapers and Pets – safety tips for smokers & vapers who care about their pets

Allergies & Pets – testing kits and tips to help rid your home of hair & dander if you or a loved one has a pet allergy

How to Get Rid of Fleas in Your Home – helpful tips for your home & yard from 1-800 PetMeds

Family Paws Parent Education –  providing ongoing support and education to new and expecting families with dogs.

Senior Pet Health & Wellness Guide – helping you meet the needs of older pets

Perfectly Imperfect – home modifications for disabled pets

Veterinary Hospitals
Animal Emergency Care 360-758-2200
Animal Eye Care 360-676-7770
Banfield Pet Hospital 360-734-9459
Bellingham Veterinary 360-734-0720
Blaine Animal Hospital 360-332-6813
Chuckanut Feline Center 360-671-7707
Cypress Veterinary Hospital 360-398-5125
Fairhaven Veterinary Hospital 360-671-3903
Fountain Veterinary Hospital 360-733-2660
Glacierview Animal Hospital 360-384-4482
Kulshan Veterinary Hospital 360-354-5095
Larrabee Animal Medicine 360-527-9533
Lynden Veterinary Hospital 360-354-7988
Maplewood Animal Hospital 360-715-1430
Mountain Veterinary Hospital 360-592-5113
Nooksack Animal Hospital 360-966-3207
Northshore Veterinary Hospital 360-738-6916
Northwest Veterinary Clinic 360-366-5434
Spay Neuter Northwest 360-812-5439
Village Veterinary Hospital 360-647-1980
Whatcom Veterinary Hospital 360-384-0212
Williams Veterinary Hospital 360-599-1030

Where to let them run free?

A guide for taking dogs to our local parks.
Off-Leash AreasOn-Leash Areas


All areas not posted otherwise require dogs to be under control and on leash at all times.

Off-Leash Areas

  • Arroyo Park: All trails
  • Lake Padden Park:
  • The fenced off-leash area near the ball fields in the southeastern part of the Park
  • Trails as designated at the east end of the park between the fenced off-leash area and the Galbraith Entrance.
  • A dog water exercise area near the ball fields area on the east side of the lake is signed for dog training and exercise. Dogs are restricted to entering Lake Padden only in this area.
  • Sunset Pond: All trails plus the water are designated for water exercise and training.
  • Sehome Hill Arboretum: All secondary (unpaved) trails. Dogs must be on leashes on all paved trails plus the Jersey Street and Arboretum Walkway.
  • Bloedel Donovan Park: During daylight hours from October 1 to April 30 and until 10:00 am from May 1 to September 30.
  • Whatcom Falls Park: The Waterline Trail south of Whatcom Creek and west of the Water Treatment Plant to Bayview cemetery and the trail from the Waterline Trail south to Lakeway are off leash.
  • Little Squalicum Park: All Trails. NOTE – Little Squalicum Creek may contain hazardous chemicals which may be harmful to animals. Also, the Little Squalicum Beach area is not owned or operated by the Bellingham Parks and Recreation Department.
  • Post Point Dog Park in Fairhaven: The field, trails and the lagoon water are in a designated area adjacent to the treatment facility and are open for dog training and exercise.


  • Lincoln Park: Full park is off-leash.
  • Skallman Park: Fenced play areas for dogs. Park is managed with the help of Grateful Dogs Off-Leash Society.


  • VanderYacht Park: Off-Leash areas.


  • Bender Fields: There is a 1 acre fenced enclosed off-leash dog park in the southeast corner of the complex.


  • There are various off-leash areas and trails throughout Whatcom County and the North Cascades mountain region. Please check individual areas and trails before letting your dog off-leash. Whatcom County Parks and Recreation can point you toward off-leash areas.

When a dog is within a designated off-leash exercise and training area, it is the owner’s/handler’s option to keep the dog under control by means of a leash. When the dog is off-leash, the owner/handler must still keep the dog under voice or sound control and is therefore responsible for all action, behavior and clean up of the dog. NOTE: Dogs in heat MUST be restricted from off-leash areas, as well as dogs who exhibit aggressive behavior toward people or other dogs.

Scoop the Poop!
The owner or handler of any dog is to REMOVE FECAL MATTER deposited by their animal on public property or public easement before the owner leaves the immediate area where the fecal matter was deposited. The owner or handler of any dog must have in their possession the equipment necessary to remove their dog’s fecal matter when accompanied by said dog on public easement. Any violation of the provisions of the animal regulations is a misdemeanor and upon conviction shall be punished by a fine.
On-Leash Areas
All areas not posted otherwise require dogs to be on leash as part of city and county codes and leash laws. Dogs on city sidewalks must be leashed, as well as in all parks not expressly designated as off-leash areas. Within city limits, dogs must be licensed and up to date on rabies vaccinations. Dogs off leash and at large are subject to confiscation and impoundment and are available for redemption in accordance with local law.
No Dogs Allowed
Due to heavy use by the public plus safety and health concerns, there are several park areas where dogs and domestic animals are not allowed:

  • Lake Padden Park and Bloedel Donovan swimming beach areas and any park land within fifteen (15) feet of the edge of Lake Padden or Lake Whatcom. The beach areas at each site are defined as:
  • Lake Padden: all land directly between the beach house parking lot sidewalk and the lake
  • Bloedel Donovan: all land bounded by the park/community building parking lot, boat launch, and the lake.
  • Cornwall Park and Fairhaven Park wading pools.
  • The athletic field playing surfaces located at:
  • Frank Geri Fields (Civic Field Complex)
  • Downer Fields (Civic Field Complex)
  • Lake Padden Park Fields
  • Battersby Field
  • Inside fenced areas of Civic Field Stadium
  • Inside fenced areas of Joe Martin Field Stadium
  • Within all park playground equipment areas
  • Within all tennis courts
  • Spray Parks
  • Big Rock Garden Park
  • Lower level of Boulevard Park west of the path along the parking lot including all grass areas and the path along the bay shoreline, path to craft studio and path near the playground equipment. Dogs ARE allowed on leash on the path next to the parking lot and to the water trestle along the trail to the south end of the park and to the overhead trestle and trail at the north end of the park.
  • All of Bloedel Donovan Park during the period of Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day Weekend EXCEPT for off leash hours in the morning.
  • In the COUNTY, dogs are NOT permitted on trails or cross-country areas within the National Park or designated shellfish beds, in park buildings, at Canyon Lake Community Forest, Stimpson Family Nature Reserve and point Whitehorn Marine Reserve.
Horses are only allowed on paved roads open to motor vehicles OR designated bridle trails and parks as follows:

  • Arroyo Park: All Trails.
  • Cornwall Park: Wooded area between ballfield and pedestrian trail.
  • Lake Padden Park: Bridle trails on wooded side of park above pedestrian trail.
  • Little Squalicum Park: Trail from Bellingham Technical College to Bay.
  • Whatcom Falls Park: Trails across the bridge, north of Whatcom Creek.

The owner or handler is responsible for cleaning up waste deposits left on park property and they are required to have in their possession the equipment to remove the fecal matter when accompanied by their horse on public property or public easement.


The loss of a cherished pet is a sad event for anyone. We’ve provided some helpful resources to help you get through it.

Our monthly, in-person support group provides a safe place for connecting grieving pet owners with experienced facilitators and other resources. Whether you are currently suffering loss or are anticipating loss, we encourage you to join us. Volunteer counselors offer support and resources to help those who have been touched by:

  • The loss of a pet
  • Anticipating the death of a pet
  • Dealing with the difficult decision of euthanasia
  • Having suffered from a lost or stolen pet
  • Wondering when/if they are ready for another pet

WHS offers monthly pet loss support group meetings the first Wednesday of every month. Sessions are at 6pm in the WHS Multipurpose Room, 2172 Division St in Bellingham, WA. These sessions are free to attend and registration is not required.

Please contact us at or 360-733-2080 x3116 with any questions.  We will put you in touch with one of our amazing volunteer support group facilitators.  These folks understand what you are going through and would be happy to listen without judgment and offer valuable resources as you continue your journey through grief.

Note: These lists and links are provided as a service to the community and do not necessarily include all Pet Loss resources. The Whatcom Humane Society is not affiliated with these organizations and writers and does not take responsibility for the content therein.

Additional Pet Loss Resources

Pet Loss Support

Whatcom Humane Society’s Pet Loss Support provides a safe, supportive place where pet owners can share stories about their pet and work through their grief with our experienced volunteer counselors. Volunteer counselors offer support and resources to help those who have been touched by the loss of a pet, anticipating the death of a pet, dealing with the difficult decision of euthanasia, have suffered from a lost or stolen pet, or wondering when/if they are ready for another pet.

For more information, please email us at  or call us at 360-733-2080 ext. 3116.

Pet Loss Meetings

  • First Wednesday of every month 6:00PM
  • Sessions typically last one hour.
  • FREE to attend.
  • Registration is not required.
  • Whatcom Humane Society Multipurpose Room
  • 2172 Divison St. Bellingham, WA 98226
Pet Loss Hotlines

Cornell University Pet Loss Support Hotline 1-(607)-253-3932
The Pet Loss Support Hotline is available via Google Voice to facilitate support Wednesdays from 7 – 9 p.m. EST, Saturdays and Sundays from 12 – 2 p.m. EST. Google Voice will prompt you to enter your name before connecting, however to remain anonymous you can say “anonymous” or just enter your first name.

The Association for Pet Loss and Bereavement has chat rooms you can join and chat with other bereaving pet owners.

Books for Children
Dog Heaven by Cynthia-Rylant, 1995

I’ll Always Love You by Hans Wilhelm, 1988

Remembering Pets by Gina Dalpra-Berman, 2010

The Fall of Freddie the Leaf by Leo Buscaglia, Ph.D., 1982

The Tenth Good Thing About Barney by Judy Viorst, 1987

Remembering My Pet: A Kid’s Own Spiritual Workbook for When a Pet Dies by Nechama Liss-Levinson, Ph.D. and Rev. Molly Phinney Baskett, M.Div., 2007

Books for Adults
Animals: God’s Faithful Servants by Dr. Joe King, 1997

Cold Noses at the Pearly Gates by Gary Kurz, 2008

Coping with Sorrow on the Loss of Your Pet Moira Anderson, Peregrine Press, 1994

Euthanasia of the Companion Animal: The Impact on Pet Owners, Veterinarians, and Society by William J. Kay, 1988

Going Home: Finding Peace When Pets Die by Jon Katz, 2012

Golden Angels: A Pet Loss Memoir by Stephanie Weaver, 2013

Goodbye My Friend: Grieving the Loss of a Pet by Mary and Herb Montgomery, 1991

Healing the Pain of Pet Loss: Letters in Memoriam by Kymberly Smith, 1997

Love Crosses Over by Elizabeth Allen, 2013

Loving and Losing a Pet by Michael Stern, PhD and Susan Cropper, DVM, 1998

Preparing for the Loss of Your Pet: Saying Goodbye with Love, Dignity, and Peace of Mind by Myrna Milani, D.V.M., 1998

Saying Good-Bye to the Pet You Love Lorri Greene, Ph.D. and Jacquelyn Landis, New Harbinger Publications, 2002

The Human-Animal Bond and Grief by Laurel Lagoni, Carolyn Butler & Suzanne Hetts, 1994


The following list is local and out of area dog trainers who utilize positive based training methods. Some may offer discounts on group or private classes to WHS adopters.

Dog Trainers List

Whatcom County:

Tails-A-Wagging, Bellingham,WA  360-733-7387

Nichols Dog & Animal Training (The Dog Guy) , Bellingham, WA  360-255-9832

Petco Dog Training, Bellingham, WA  360-715-3785

PetSmart Dog Training, Bellingham, WA  360-738-9653 T

The Clever Canine, Bellingham, WA  360-223-2241

Embarking the Pet Dog, Bellingham, WA  360-399-6380

Speak Dog Training, Bellingham, WA  206-595-5670

Dog Training 101, Lynden, WA  541-297-7073

Janine’s Super K9s, Bellingham, WA  360-303-6482

McKenna Rosser, Everson, WA  360-543-8129

Skagit County:

Sunnylane K9 Training Academy, Sedro Woolley, WA

British Columbia:

Cedar Valley K9, Mission, BC  604-312-6604

Modern Canine, Langley, BC  604-866-8999

Healthy Paws Dog Training, Langley, BC  604-308-6837

Joyful Hound, Langley, BC  604-888-5665

Super Nova Dog Training Academy, Langley, BC  604-828-3625

Snohomish County:

Adventure Dog Ranch, Marysville, WA  360-652-2924

Sno-King Dog Training, Marysville, WA  360-652-2924

Paws Afoot, Everett, WA  425-350-5288

The Dog Works, Monroe, WA  360-793-2368

Four Paws Sports, Lynwood, WA  425-835-0483

Dog Spot NW, Everett, WA  425-252-7768

King County:

Seattle Humane Society, Seattle, WA  425-641-0080

Ahimsa Dog Training, Seattle, WA  206-364-4072

Pick of the Litter Dog Training, Kent, WA  206-779-3552

Thurston County:

Happy Dog Institute, Olympia, WA  360-9157130

Let’s Talk Dogs, Lacey, WA  360-556-6857

Whatcom Humane Society has a long-standing policy of only recommending and working with dog trainers and dog training facilities that utilize positive, reward based training methods. We feel strongly that this is the most humane way of treating and training companion animals.

Rewards Based Training

We all like to be praised rather than punished. The same is true for your dog. This is the theory behind dog training with positive reinforcement based training methods. Positive reinforcement means giving your dog something pleasant or rewarding immediately after the dog does something you want him/her to do. Because your praise and/or reward makes the dog more likely to repeat the behavior in the future, positive reward based training is one of the most powerful tools you can use to shape your dog’s behavior.

Helpful Links on Reward Based Dog Training:

Kennels and Boarding Facilities
3 Schips & A Girl 360-927-6033
Cat Country Resort 360-966-4342
Cat Nap Inn 360-724-3513
Custer Kennels & Boarding 360-366-4709
Hyline Hotel & Training for Dogs 360-398-0174
Lomar’s Dog Haven 360-366-3647
Nooksack Animal Hospital 360-966-3207
Nooksack Dog Dens 360-988-2000
Northwest K9 Inn and Spa 360-384-6578
Pet’s Choice Sitting Services 360-306-0367
Pooch Palace & Kitty Kastle 360-526-0093
R&R Kennels 360-671-8445
Rover Stay Over 360-306-5931
Upscale Puppy 360-332-2136
Whatcom Veterinary Hospital 360-384-0212
Local Pet Sitters
Amys Pet-n-Home Sitting Bellingham, WA 360-820-3778
Aunt Carol’s Pet Sitting Bellingham, WA 360-318-5606
Barkley’s Best Sitting Bellingham, WA 360-325-2926
Bham Pet Sitting Bellingham, WA 360-940-9878
Catnip Cat Care Services Bellingham, WA 360-224-7209
Cozy Critter Care Bellingham, WA 360-223-5117
Down on the Farm Bellingham, WA 360-739-9688
Hot Dawg Pet Care Bellingham, WA 360-820-2320
Jan’s Critter Sitters Bellingham, WA 360-671-0175
Lisa the Cat Nanny Bellingham, WA 360-305-0575
Lynden Pet Nanny Lynden, WA 360-318-9642
Northwest Kitty Care Bellingham, WA 360-319-7536
Pet Sitters by the Bay Bellingham, WA 360-734-0364
West Coast Pets, LLC Ferndale, WA 360-306-8679  
Whatcom Pet Care Network Bellingham, WA  


The Whatcom Humane Society Pet Food Bank is dependent on the generosity of the community to operate. Based on the availability of donated food, there may be times when WHS can provide more or less food to pet owners in need. Those utilizing the pet food bank should not rely or depend on this program as the sole source of food for your pet(s).

Pet food is also available on a limited basis through the Bellingham Food Bank located at 1824 Ellis Street, Bellingham WA 98225. Contact the Bellingham Food Bank with questions at 360-676-0392

Note:  Food bank is intended to be supplemental.  WHS cannot guarantee a 30 day supply.  Availability of pet food is dependent upon the generous donations made by members of the public to our food bank program.  Please do not rely on this program as your sole source of care for your pets.

Additional Information

Rules for Recipients

All persons requesting assistance with pet food must abide by the rules listed below:

Visit during regular business hours of operation. WHS is open Tuesday thru Sunday 11am– 6pm. We are unable to provide pet food bank services outside of those times.

Photo identification must be presented at each visit to receive food bank. A driver’s license with full name and address is required on your first visit to set up your food bank account. If you are picking up food for someone else, you will need to present their photo identification or a copy of such.

➢ Food bank can only be received once every 30 calendar days. You must wait a full 30 days between visits to receive food bank. If you are unsure when you last received assistance, please call the front desk at (360) 733-2080 ext. 0 and a staff member can assist you.

Food bank will be provided to only one person per household. If you are picking up for another member of your household, you will need to present their photo identification or a copy of such.

➢ Food bank recipients must be off the food bank program and able to independently provide food and care for the pets in the home for a minimum of one year before being eligible to adopt from the Whatcom Humane Society.

Pet Food Bank recipients who become verbally abusive to members of our staff or volunteer teams will be asked to leave the premises and may become ineligible to receive further assistance.

Need assistance with low-cost spay/neuter services? WHS can help. Please ask about our SNAP Program and/or receiving a voucher for services through Spay/Neuter Northwest or Snip Snip Hooray. The household receiving food bank will be required to provide proof of spay or neuter for all dogs and cats in the home prior to receiving food bank a second time. These guidelines are part of our ongoing efforts to curb the pet overpopulation problem in Whatcom County.

The Whatcom Humane Society reserves the right to deny food bank at any time if we find that the rules listed above have been violated.

Low Cost Spay/Neuter
Persons with animals that are not spayed or neutered will be given information about the WHS low-cost Spay/Neuter Assistance Program (SNAP) and other low-cost options in Whatcom County.  The household receiving food bank will be required to provide proof of spay or neuter prior to receiving food bank a second time.  These guidelines are part of our ongoing effort to curb the increasing pet overpopulation problem.