MARSHALL, TX (KSLA) - Marshall, Texas, police say there's been a outbreak of canine parvovirus in the city's animal shelter.
So the facility is accepting no more dogs for the time being.
The adult canines already at the shelter are being kept outside.
And workers are giving the facility a deep cleaning.
Parvovirus is a highly contagious and often deadly disease commonly found in puppies.
It also can affect adult dogs that have not been vaccinated.
WebMD for pets says parvovirus:
- is extremely contagious,
- can be transmitted by any person, animal or object that comes in contact with an infected dog's feces, and,
- is highly resistant, meaning the virus can live in the environment for months and may survive on inanimate objects such as food bowls, shoes, clothing, carpeting and floors.
The website says symptoms of canine parvovirus generally are:
- severe vomiting,
- loss of appetite, and,
- bloody, foul-smelling diarrhea that can lead to life-threatening dehydration.
With the amount of foot traffic at the Marshall shelter and the fact that the virus can be picked up anywhere and transmitted, authorities said there's no way to determine how many animals have been affected by the outbreak.
"The best thing pet owners can do is vaccinate," police advise.
"With any vaccination, it's not guaranteed your dog won't get it. But there's a lower chance."
Meantime, Marshall's shelter will be unable to house any dogs until Monday at the soonest.