August 23, 2022 - The adoptions of kittens and adolescent cats are resuming at Fort Wayne Animal Care & Control after an observation period, testing and increased disinfecting efforts at the shelter following a feline panleukopenia outbreak. The intake of cats and kittens is still being diverted until Sept. 1 our until shelter medical staff determine it is safe to resume normal intake operations.
Shelter staff have been working to test, observe the cats/kittens for symptoms and deep clean the shelter since the panleukopenia outbreak was announced Aug. 18. Cats and kittens currently available for adoption have not displayed symptoms and/or have tested negative for the deadly virus. A small population of cats will remain unavailable for adoption the remainder of this week as they complete an observation period. Potential adopters can view a list of all available cats and kittens here. Adopters are still encouraged to monitor their new pets once at home as a precaution.
Feline panleukopenia, also known as the feline distemper or feline parvo, is a highly contagious virus that mostly affects unvaccinated kittens. Symptoms include fatigue, vomiting, diarrhea, and death. It is spread when a cat or kitten comes into contact with infected feces, vomit, nasal discharge and other bodily excretions. It does not affect people or other types of animals such as dogs.
Intake staff will continue to work with citizens needing to surrender cats and kittens to hopefully divert the intake of more animals to prevent further infections until Sept. 1. Citizens will be offered options to get the cat vaccinated at the shelter then keep it at their home until the shelter is ready and able to take the cat or kitten. Citizens bringing in stray cats or kittens will be offered the same service, vaccinations then the option to hold them in their home to prevent further spread of the disease. FWACC is an open access shelter, so if the citizen does not wish to take the cat or kitten home we will take it in.
All community cats will continue to be vaccinated against feline panleukopenia before being returned to their colony for the foreseeable future.
Feline panleukopenia is a preventable disease. Kittens can receive the first round of vaccines to prevent the deadly disease at 4-6 weeks and should receive boosters as recommended by a veterinarian. Adult cats should also be vaccinated to prevent illness.
The shelter is seeking the community's immediate help with donations to the Angel Fund to help cover the cost of the additional vaccines needed for community cats and tests to ensure the cats at the shelter are healthy and able to be adopted.