07 February 2009

Broken Baltimore: Dog Pound Shutdown

Does anything run right in this town?

Seems like the Baltimore City owned, but privately run animal shelter is shutdown due to an outbreak of the deadly parvo disease. None of the over 300 animals present are allowed to leave and no new animals are being accepted or taken in.

Although animal shelther Executive Director Jennifer Mead-Brause said it's one of the most common infectious diseases dogs can have, does this explain an outbreak at the shelter? Friends of mine who run a municipal animal shelter in a major city, with lots of experience in the animal business, tell me outbreaks are highly preventable. Since the disease is common, there are well established industry procedures to prevent this very sort of thing.

They say shelters normally take in sick animals all the time without putting the entire shelter population at risk. When proper procedure is followed, sick animals are isolated. I'm told inoculating all incoming animals before they are introduced to the general population, along with proper shelter cleaning and hygiene procedures prevents the spread of parvo and other animal diseases.

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