Petition Closed

Report: Animal Shelter With Mysterious Virus Was Overcrowded

Posted: 4:59 pm EDT August 26, 2010Updated: 5:48 pm EDT August 26, 2010

CATAWBA COUNTY, N.C. -- Inspectors found a severe overcrowding problem at an animal shelter that is temporarily closing and euthanizing about 200 animals, according to a report in March.Officials at the Catawba County Animal Shelter said an unidentified virus is forcing them to temporary close the shelter and euthanize all of the animals currently being held there.The animals, which officials said are primarily dogs and cats, will be euthanized during the next week, and the entire building will be sanitized in an effort to clear the shelter of the virus, which they said kills both cats and dogs and has thus far proved untreatable.According to the most recent reports, inspectors found that space in the shelter was an issue. At one point, inspectors found twice as many dogs and cats as the shelter was built to hold. Some of the spaces meant to hold one animal held five or six, inspectors said.The building is supposed to hold 78 animals, but last fall, inspectors said it held 181 dogs.“There's nothing you can really do,” Jay Blatche, the shelter’s animal services manager, said. “If you don't have the space, you don't have the space. The animals still have to be held, taken care of and watered.”Blatche said the shelter, which was built in 1985, has been overcrowded since he’s been there.Earlier this year, the state began requiring shelters to hold animals for at least 72 hours, which has added to overcrowding issues.The outbreak of an upper respiratory illness was first noticed about a month ago, Blatche said. He said they don’t know if the virus could be related to overcrowding.“We can't answer that right now because we don't know what the disease is,” he said. “We don't know if overcrowding was an issue or is an issue right now …. Everyone would definitely like to know.”Officials at the Catawba Humane Society said they not seen any evidence of the mysterious virus at their shelter and are still adopting out animals. The shelter has not received any pets from the Catawba Animal Shelter in the last month, officials said.Previous Stories: August 25, 2010: Unidentified Illness Forces Animal Shelter To Close

Letter to
city hall Julian G. Whitener
mayor Rudy Wright
manag./director o' Animal Control,since1985 Jay Blatche
and 1 other
Patrick McHenry
Since it may be too late to save all these animals because of such short notice, we can at least try to prevent it from happening ever again. And since the Humane Socitey may have room to take the animals that do respond to treatment, that the animal shelter ask them to take them and adopt them out for them, since that is what they are there for anyway.
Animal Control is under staffed, under paid; and the facility they have now is too small an there was no mention on how much more squar feet the new building is going to be, in order to accomadate
the problem at hand. And that the applcants to this kind of civil servent job should be screened, as to prevent anyone getting this job that isn't an Animal Lover truly, and to not be there for the pay check only.
Angie Reinhardt's cat "Rocky Road" was severly abused by declawing and possibly the front legs were broken along with an infection in them both, as she was unable to walk own her own. She past away late Tuesday evening before midnight.
The length of time that the cat's were held at the shelter was from July 16 to Aug. 23 of 2010. Three young cat's, two femals and one male died while at the shelter. The cat's left here healthy but were not returned in the same manner.
Also that when the shelter gets any fictious calls on cruelity, that person should have the same fines and or jail time as persons do for 911 calls. Since this was how they were taken away anyway.

The things that I would like to see happen is they cloud start getting the leagle system involved by giving the inmates of the jail the added duty of rehabillitation work, and the community service work program that could help the inmates, get training in other areas of work that are important to our community to make it safer. This would help the shelter, the animals and the community.

To have the community to reach out to the shelter to help them, since they did'nt do this themself in order to save the healthy ones, by posting public notices for when they need help, through all the scorces available, A better Life Animal Rescue, Humane Scocity, Aspca, PETA, the list goes on, they could have did a pet awareness bizzar to raise any extra money need for the new facility