Adoptions down as pound prevents spread of disease

Campbelltown Animal Care Facility has seen a drop in adoptions since closing its doors to new cat admissions last week.

The facility put a pause on accepting surrendered or stray cats after the outbreak of a deadly feline virus called panleukopenia (cat parvovirus) in greater western Sydney.

The preventative measure ensured all cats inside the pound remained uninfected by the highly contagious virus.

Campbelltown Council’s director of city development Jim Baldwin said all cats were still available for adoption.

“Council’s Animal Care Facility has not been impacted by the disease, and in response to the outbreak, our cats were vaccinated and health checked by our vet,” he said.

“Vaccinations were carried out on Monday (February 13) as council was advised the disease is usually fatal to cats.”

Mr Baldwin said it was still unclear when the facility would begin accepting cats again.

“A re-opening date will be determined based on consultation with other shelters and veterinary advice on the ongoing protection of existing cats,” he said.

In the meantime, Mr Baldwin said it was important to remind the community cats at the facility were still in need of permanent homes.

“Since the outbreak of this disease in western Sydney, cat rehoming numbers have dropped significantly,” he said.

“Only one cat from Campbelltown’s Animal Care Facility has been rehomed since late last week.

“It’s important that potential adopters know that our facility has not been impacted by the disease, and that cats available for adoption are healthy and have been immunised.”

Mr Baldwin said the facility had fortunately not needed to turn away too many cats.

“We have had a number of telephone enquiries but only a few people have attended the facility with cats to surrender,” he said

“It seems that the broader community has heard about the shutting of shelters due to this disease and the greater majority of people have been very understanding.”

The director said panleukopenia was not understood to present any risk to dogs but that all dogs had been vaccinated against parvo-virus.

An open day, featuring tours, activities and microchipping, will be held at the Campbelltown Animal Care Facility on Saturday, March 4.