FORT WORTH, Texas – The Humane Society of North Texas mega pet adoption event at the Will Rogers Memorial Center later this month has been postponed.
The organization said it was awaiting test results for a highly contagious and deadly disease known as distemper.
According to authorities, a few dogs have already tested positive.
Some areas of the Humanitarian Society’s facilities are completely isolated due to the distemper outbreak, including adoptions and admitting dogs.
Human society has said that positive test results are coming back every day. At present, 40 of the humanitarian society’s dogs have tested positive for distemper.
It is a very contagious disease with no cure, however, it is preventable if a dog is vaccinated.
The virus attacks the respiratory, gastrointestinal and nervous systems of dogs. Cats and humans are not affected.
Humane Society medical staff said the problem is that pets enter the shelter as surrenders or stray and are not vaccinated.
But while the humanitarian society vaccinates upon ingestion, some of the animals are already carriers of distemper.
Distemper can travel through the air or body fluids, causing the disease to spread like wildfire.
And it’s not just isolated for puppies from human society. There are also older dogs who are fatally ill.
“We steam rice and boiled chicken and our staff hand feed our sick dogs, which is why I think our staff are taxed so much because you get so attached to these pets that you only find out. We are too early in this area to see what the outcome of their lives will be, “said Cassie Davidson, communications director for the Humane Society of North Texas.
Staff work 15 to 16 hours a day on the 350 dogs in their shelters and hope to contain the spread of the disease as much as possible. All staff follow full PPE protocols.
Dog adoptions and admissions are closed, but the Humanitarian Society clinic and cat adoptions are both open.
For those who want to help, the humanitarian society accepts donations, including cash, as well as blankets or towels.
And their number one tip is to get pets vaccinated.