Quarantine rooms are obviously important for cat shelters where lots of cats are together in a relatively small space which promotes the transmission of disease. If you adopt a cat from a rescue center should you ask whether they have a quarantine room?
The Animal Friends Connection Humane Society has a separate quarantine area. The shelter quarantines new cats to ensure that they are healthy before they are transferred to the adoption center proper where they are placed with new guardians. The cats are kept in the quarantine room to 12 days to ensure that they do not have upper respiratory infections or other medical problems.
The cats are also spayed or neutered, tested for feline leukaemia virus and feline immunodeficiency virus. Vaccinations are started and the cats are also de-wormed and treated for fleas. Excellent work by the sound of it.
The Rowan County Animal Shelter are in the process of trying to limit disease transmission amongst their stray cats by creating a quarantine room. This is a new step. Because it is a new process for this shelter, it got me thinking about how many other shelters have quarantine rooms.
The Rowan County Animal Shelter have converted their facility’s food room to a quarantine room. The supervisor, Clai Martin, wisely says that their new quarantine room and the concrete walls may help to keep down diseases at the shelter, which is of particular concern to the supervisor at the moment because they are having problems with disease transmission amongst the cats.
Jessica Maine, in Hawaii, USA suggested that the feline herpesvirus is an increasing problem in breeding categories in the USA. Breeding catteries like shelters have the same sort of problem: animals close together.
Kelly in Florida bought a Bengal cat from a breeder. The cat died of feline infectious peritonitis about 5 weeks later. It was a classic case of how things can go wrong when you purchase from a breeder have not got things right.
Feline infectious peritonitis (FIP) is at its most dangerous in multi-cat households, shelters, sanctuaries, catteries and boarding establishments. The dried virus can survive for weeks in the environment but it can be killed with household disinfectant. A new cat arriving at a multi-cat environment can be isolated to 2 weeks and tested for FIP. The problem is that a healthy cat that tests positive for the coronavirus should not be removed because you cannot tell if the virus is the benign or virulent form from a corona virus titre.
As for the feline immunodeficiency virus, all cats in a multi-cat environment should be tested. Cats who test positive should be removed or isolated from contact with others.
One can readily see the benefits of a quarantine area at the shelter. How many shelters have them?