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SPCA of Texas extends suspension of intake and adoptions, more dogs test positive for distemper

Wednesday evening headlines for June 22, 2022
Wednesday evening headlines for June 22, 2022 02:16

DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) - The SPCA of Texas announced on Wednesday that they are continuing suspension of adoptions and intake due to a distemper outbreak.  

On June 8, the SPCA of Texas announced they were suspending adoptions and intakes for at least two weeks due to at least two dogs being infected with distemper, a highly contagious and potentially fatal disease in dogs. 

Now, the SPCA of Texas said that there are at least 15 dogs infected with distemper. The suspension is expected to last at least another three weeks. 

All dogs continue to be monitored and 155 dogs have been tested for infection, the SPCA of Texas said in a release. Of those tests, 144 results have been received and 15 distemper positive dogs have been identified. 

"The SPCA of Texas respectfully asks for the public's patience as we do everything in our power to protect and care for the animals in our facilities and in our community," said Karen Froehlich, president and CEO of SPCA of Texas. "This situation indicates that canine distemper virus is circulating in the community, and the SPCA of Texas urges all pet owners to vaccinate all of their pets against all species-appropriate diseases under the direction of their veterinarian as well as to have their pet spayed or neutered and microchipped." 

The locations listed below will remain closed to adopters, volunteers and community members for at least another three weeks: 

  • Jan Rees-Jones Animal Care Center 

  • Myron K. Martin Spay/Neuter and Veterinary Care Clinic 

  • Russell E. Dealey Animal Rescue Center 

  • Ellis County Animal Care Center.   

The SPCA of Texas said that offsite adoptions of cats and kittens at local stores will continue. Livestock and horse adoptions at the SPCA of Texas' Equine Center in McKinney will also continue and some foster dogs will also be available for adoption by appointment. 

The Mary Spencer Spay/Neuter and Veterinary Care Clinic will remain open, food and supply pick-ups for the Russell H. Perry Pet Resource Center will continue, the Ellis County Animal Care Center will quarantine bite case animals and urgent animal cruelty investigations will also continue. 

"This disease is highly preventable when dogs are properly vaccinated," said Dr. Amber Alu, SPCA of Texas chief medical officer. "The vaccine is effective and is far less expensive than treating the disease or losing your pet to the virus. I highly recommend all dog and ferret owners make sure their pets' distemper vaccination is up to date. Dog owners should also use caution when socializing puppies or unvaccinated dogs where dogs congregate such as parks."

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