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Discussion Starter #1
I just got a job at a shelter and sadly, dogs go on the euth-list if they get kennel cough. I can understand on one hand because it's so contagious it's essentially so protect the other dogs. But really, it seems it's so strong there all the dogs end up with it eventually. At least 1-5 dogs EVERY day come down with it. Many (all non-Pit Bulls) get pulled even if they are on that list, but I still see many good or at least decent dogs get put down for a simple cough. I'm currently really upset that some of the dogs who I knew of got put down, and two of our "helper dogs" in play groups might have been too. It's really sad. :( And it sucks because all the workers from ACOs to adoption counselors, other enrichment people and the vets ARE really good and love the animals.

I know Kennel Cough is airborne, so that I can't prevent. I try to wash and sanitize my hands and slip leash and other things as well as I can, but even if I do well there's dozens of other works potentially transmitting germs. Does anyone know of anything I can do personally or see if the shelter can do to prevent this shooting of a mouse with an elephant gun? I was thinking maybe if the shelter got some sort of better ventilation system (it's an old building) or maybe a makeover of some of the kennels that might help? After I'm there a bit longer I might try to talk to some of the doctors. It's not fair dogs with such curable problems get put down. And gosh, there just are NOT enough good rescues who pull Pit Bulls. I might also buy some books or do more research on shelter medicine. Surely something can be done to make the situation a little better that doesn't involve begging for last minute rescues. That's just not dependable enough.
 

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What they need is to put any new dogs in isolation for a few days to make sure they are healthy before putting them in with the rest of the dogs. The sad thing is that really isn't feasible for a shelter taking in large numbers of dogs, and the other MAJOR draw back is that you'd have to isolate each dogs individually or you'd be right back to square one.

Some other things you can try and really sterilizing the kennel that the infected dog has stayed in. Do a shoe wash for the bottom of your shoes in addition to the hand washing. When I volunteered at Audubon Zoo they had us do shoe washes before going into certain areas. Try to keep the dogs that have been with y'all for awhile from sniffing the new dogs until they've been with y'all long enough to know they are healthy. If you can try keeping new dogs in kennels as far as possible from the old ones.

Good luck! It's heart breaking to hear that dogs are being put down for something that is so easy to get well from, often without even having to give them medicine.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Yeah I think I'll soak the bottom of my shoes in bleach. I kept forgetting. I've not been taking my work shoes in the house (or even driveway) because I don't want the germs to come in contact with my dogs. -sigh- but even if I do all these things everyone else isn't. It is sadly impractical to isolate the dogs properly when an unpredictable number comes theft the door each day and the adoption/pull/reclaim rate on healthy dogs seems to be something like a dozen or two a week. Its a big change when I'm used to private shelters with a very low kill or no kill rate. But we are doing good things, it's just a hard adjustment.
 
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