Walker County Humane and Adoption Center is now on an intake and adoption freeze, in fear dogs in their care could potentially have distemper.A dog that was recently adopted from the county shelter …
Walker County Humane and Adoption Center is now on an intake and adoption freeze, in fear dogs in their care could potentially have distemper.
A dog that was recently adopted from the county shelter has now been diagnosed with distemper, according to the Walker County Commission, which operates the county animal shelter. This diagnosis comes amid the City of Jasper Animal Shelter's distemper outbreak, where eight dogs have been positively diagnosed with the disease.
Early signs of distemper include fever, nasal discharge, coughing and other symptoms. As the disease progresses, dogs can experience seizures and other neurological issues.
Walker County Administrator Robbie Dickerson said a local veterinarian has been consulted, and it will take over a week for all dogs at the shelter to be tested and to receive test results.
She said the dog that was adopted and later diagnosed was surrendered to the shelter as a stray and did not exhibit signs of the disease prior to adoption.
"We're just going to go ahead, close down, test all that we have and make sure that we're good," Dickerson told the Daily Mountain Eagle Wednesday afternoon. "We're trying to be proactive. We just want to make sure that our shelter is healthy and that we take care of those that are there right now."
With the county and city animal shelters both on an intake and adoption freeze, there is currently no animal shelter in the county where dogs and cats can be surrendered or adopted.
Two of the closest animal shelters to Walker County are Greater Birmingham Humane Society (GBHS) and Cullman County Animal Shelter. GBHS is located 46 miles from Jasper at 300 Snow Dr. in Birmingham, while Cullman's animal shelter is located 42 miles away from Jasper at 935 Convent Rd. NE in Cullman.
It is unknown if local veterinarians are seeing other cases of distemper; however, the Daily Mountain Eagle will be contacting local veterinarians to discuss the disease for an upcoming informative feature.