The Douglas County Animal Shelter will remain closed to the public until next Wednesday, July 21.
Rick Martin, spokesman for the county, said the extended closure is needed to “provide additional time for continued deep cleaning and animal quarantine efforts to help prevent the spread of kennel cough.”
The shelter has been closed to the public since July 8 when Martin said four dogs were being treated “due to an outbreak of kennel cough” at the facility on Mack Road in Douglasville.
Martin said in separate news releases this month that the county had initially planned to reopen the shelter to the public on July 9 before pushing the reopening back to July 16 and now to July 21.
Kennel cough is a contagious upper respiratory infection that most often affects dogs housed in kennels, Martin said in a release Friday.
“Out of an abundance of caution, the DCAS staff has enacted protocols to contain the virus and help prevent the spread to surrounding pet residents,” Martin said. “Medical treatment is being administered to those animals currently showing symptoms.”
Martin said that upon arrival at the shelter, all animals are observed for kennel cough related symptoms, and vaccinated if needed. He said that “unfortunately, the vaccination history for most incoming animals is unknown, and kennel cough symptoms can take 10-14 days to appear.”
Kennel cough can be easily treated with antibiotics, and DCAS is fully committed to preventing the spread of this airborne related illness both in the shelter and community at large, Martin said.