Category Archives: shelter diseases

Treating Sarcoptic Mange in a Shelter Setting


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Sarcoptic mange, also known as scabies, is a skin condition caused by sarcoptic mange mite (Sarcoptes scabei) infestations. These white, oval-shaped, microscopic arachnids reside on and eat the skin of their animal host. Sarcoptic mange mites can infest humans and cats, but are more common and persistent on dogs. What is often called sarcoptic mange on cats is usually a similar condition with the same treatment protocols—notoedric mange—caused by a related mite, Notoedres cati. Transmission of Sarcoptic Mange Mites In […]

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Which Calicivirus is to Blame in a Shelter Outbreak?


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Differentiating between “regular” feline calicivirus (FCV) and virulent systemic feline calicivirus (VS-FCV) during an outbreak of disease in a shelter is not a straightforward endeavor. Typically, FCV causes some combination of *fever *sneezing *discharge from the eyes and nose *red and swollen eyes *drooling *ulcers in the mouth *loss of appetite *painful joints and limping VS-FCV can cause all of the above with the addition of: *swelling of the face or limbs *crusting, scabs, hair loss, and ulceration of the […]

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What is Canine Cough?


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Canine cough, previously referred to as kennel cough, isn’t really one discrete disease. The term refers to a set of symptoms. The illness can be caused by a variety of agents – acting alone or together. The most common causes are the bacteria, Bordetella bronchiseptica, and the canine parainfluenza virus. Symptoms generally include a hallmark harsh, dry cough, similar to a honking goose. Usually, dogs with canine cough sound much worse than they feel. Aerosol is the primary means of […]

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The Use of Isolation in a Shelter Setting


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For any shelter, rescue group or foster home, an isolation setup is very important. It is true that the dog or cat put into isolation may feel upset and a bit stressed due to the lack of social contact, but disease control is so important that a small amount of stress is worth it. Ideally, a shelter would have two isolation set-ups. The first would be for ill animals. This area needs strict guidelines for hygiene, kennels that are easy […]

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Common Animal Shelter Health Concerns: Hookworms


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Because your adoption center houses numerous animals in close proximity, you must always watch for potential health problems to avoid rapid proliferation. Hookworms are ¼ to ½-inch-long parasites that attach to the lining of an animal’s small intestine to feed on its blood. Hookworms belong to the family of worms called ancylostomatids, and several species of hookworms affect cats and dogs. Infections spread through several routes, so remaining proactive about prevention, monitoring animals, and treatment is important. Transmission of Hookworm […]

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