Fort Wayne Animal Care & Control halts cat adoptions amid virus outbreak

FORT WAYNE, Indiana (WANE) – Fort Wayne Animal Care and Control has suspended the adoption and housing of maternity cats and kittens due to a recent outbreak of a highly contagious viral disease.

The shelter said Thursday it was working to contain and control amid an outbreak of feline panleukopenia, a potentially deadly virus that spreads when a cat or kitten comes into contact with infected feces, vomit, nasal discharge and other bodily discharges decontaminate. It primarily affects unvaccinated kittens and can cause fatigue, vomiting, diarrhea, or death.

Feline panleukopenia does not affect humans or other animal species such as dogs.

Fort Wayne Animal Care and Control said all adoptions of maternity cats and kittens will be suspended until Tuesday, August 23 or until it is safe “to ensure the disease does not spread further to cats in our community.” .

The shelter is also not accepting cats or kittens until at least September 1, or until medical staff determine it can return to normal operations.

Meanwhile, staff tested and monitored all of the cats currently at the shelter. All cats and kittens are vaccinated when they come to Fort Wayne Animal Care and Control.

Anyone who has adopted a cat or kitten from Fort Wayne Animal Care & Control since August 1, whether at the shelter or outside, should monitor their pet at home. If it has or is showing symptoms, please call our office at 427-1244 option 1 immediately. Staff are working to contact adopters who may be impacted by the outbreak.


Citizens who currently have an appointment to donate an at-risk cat or kitten will be contacted and offered options to have the cat vaccinated at the shelter and then keep it at home until the shelter is ready and the cat or kitten is released the kitten can take. Citizens who bring stray cats or kittens are offered the same service, vaccinations and then the opportunity to keep them in their home to prevent further spread of the disease. FWACC is an open access shelter. So if the citizen doesn’t want to take the cat or kitten home, we take them in.

To further stop the spread of the disease in our community, all community cats are vaccinated against feline panleukopenia before being returned to their colony.

Feline panleukopenia is a preventable disease. FWACC urges all pet owners to ensure their cats are up to date on current vaccines. Kittens can receive the first round of vaccines to prevent the deadly disease at 4-6 weeks and should receive booster shots as recommended by a veterinarian. Adult cats should also be vaccinated to prevent disease.

The shelter is seeking the immediate help of the community with donations to the Angel Fund to help cover the cost of the additional vaccines needed for community cats and the care of affected cats.

Those wishing to donate can help by either purchasing needed supplies through the shelter’s Amazon Wishlist or by making monetary donations through the shelter’s website.

https://www.wane.com/news/local-news/fort-wayne-animal-care-control-stops-feline-adoptions-amid-virus-outbreak/ Fort Wayne Animal Care & Control halts cat adoptions amid virus outbreak

Tom Vazquez

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