Kennel cough forces 2nd closure of animal shelter

Georgetown, SC - GEORGETOWN COUNTY, SC (WMBF) – A recent outbreak of kennel cough has prompted Saint Frances Animal Center in Georgetown to close for a second time in eight days.

The organization said Thursday the outbreak, which shut its doors on July 1, forced them to temporarily halt adoptions intake and surgery while workers isolate and treat infected animals and disinfect the holding areas.

"The summer months offer a facility like ours a great challenge in health management for the animals in the facility,"said Nancy Campos, executive director of the center. "Summer heat mixed with the large amount of stray, unvaccinated animals brought to our facility from rural areas can bring many diseases. These diseases can be quickly passed to the animals in the facility and the general public unless proper precautions are taken."

Campos said the center would not reopen until they had thoroughly determined that all the animals would be safe, adding that all pets that have left the facility within the past month are not at risk of developing the upper respiratory disease.

Officials quarantined the shelter last week after local animal control workers brought a sick dog to the facility. Mandy Johnson said at the time that other animals then began falling ill.

Tests later confirmed the illness was kennel cough, and after an initial response the shelter reopened July 5.

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