Multiple dogs dead following parvo outbreak at East Texas shelter

Multiple dogs dead following parvo outbreak at East Texas shelter
Source: KTRE Staff
Source: KTRE Staff

LIVINGSTON, TX (KTRE) - A deadly outbreak of parvo virus has killed 15 dogs at the SPCA of Polk County.

"Devastated. There is no other word for it. Especially since it affects the puppies," said Carl Feren, the executive director of SPCA of Polk County.

It is parvo. The often deadly disease made its way to the SPCA of Polk County nearly eight weeks ago.

"It started out in one or two dogs, and we brought them in to the vet for treatment, and a few days later, noticed a few more dogs," Feren said.

That fast-moving virus eventually spread to 25 dogs total, many of which that were just rescued after being found alone with no place to go.

"It's tough enough to see these dogs come in here and really tough to see them come in and get sick and die," Feren said.

That deadly outbreak claimed the lives of 15 dogs, despite a heavy quarantine at the facility.

"Losing 15 puppies to this is really terrible. The good thing is we were able to save about a dozen," Feren said.

Thus these little miracles. Feren credits the work of his employees who often stayed overnight nursing the pups back to health.

But between the cost of meds and that of euthanizing the too-sick puppies, the county's shelter racked up a bill of over $4,000.

"We need financial help," Feren said.

They need help to finish building a separate quarantine building in hopes of never enduring such an experience again.

Feren gave this warning for all pet owners.

"The incubation period for parvo can be as little as six days up to a maximum of two weeks. It's very easy to have a very healthy puppy today and not one six days later," said Linda Burnett, Director of Programs at the SPCA of Polk County.

If you're interested in donating to the SPCA of Polk County, you can do so by visiting their website and clicking on donate.

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