Animal shelter to fight kennel cough|Administering vaccine will help make dogs more adoptable, says Woolard

Published 8:49 am Friday, July 24, 2009

Contributing Editor

Beaufort County Animal Control has received a $4,980 grant from the Foundation to purchase enough vaccine to inoculate all its incoming dogs and puppies against kennel cough (infectious tracheobronchitis) for approximately one year.
Kennel cough is similar to the common cold; it is a contagious virus that shelter managers would like to eradicate.
“We just got the grant yesterday,” said Sandy Woolard, the county’s chief animal-control officer, on Thursday.
People who visit the Betsy Bailey Nelson Animal Control Facility in Beaufort County are reluctant to adopt dogs that have kennel cough, Woolard said. Being able to treat dogs and puppies with kennel cough that come into the shelter and to keep the virus from affecting dogs already at the shelter will be of great benefit to the shelter, she said.
“It helps them become more adoptable,” Woolard said.
The shelter plans to shop around for the best price it can get on the vaccine and likely will place an order through a local animal hospital, Woolard said.
Woolard said the grant is the first one the shelter sought from the foundation.
Forty-six shelters, including six in North Carolina, were awarded grants, according to Lisa Salisbury with the foundation. The grant awarded to the local shelter should vaccinate just under 2,000 dogs, she said.
“In shelters, kennel cough can be devastating,” said Elizabeth Neuschatz, executive director of the Foundation, in a news release. “It spreads rapidly, and treatment is costly. Shelters are often compelled by their budgets to euthanize otherwise adoptable dogs to stop the spread of the disease. The real key to stopping this scourge is prevention, and that’s the aim of these vaccine grants: stopping kennel cough before it gets started.”
The grants are part of the Foundation’s care and feeding program. Funding is made possible through the foundation’s partnership with The Animal Rescue Site’s Click to Give program and individual donations.
“It’s gratifying to be part of a program that can make such a difference for shelter dogs,” said Tim Kunin, CEO of The Animal Rescue Site. “Vaccines for kennel cough have the potential to save hundreds, if not thousands of lives.”
The Foundation, nonprofit organization, was established in 2003 to assist adoption partners through problem solving, fundraising and providing relief in times of stress or disaster. Its mission is to ensure that no pet is euthanized for lack of a home.
The Animal Rescue Site is celebrating its seventh anniversary this month.
Since 2002, daily clicks by millions of visitors to the homepage’s purple button have funded more than 270.3 million bowls of food for animals in need (the site’s sponsoring advertisers pay for the clicks). The Animal Rescue Site also sponsors the $100,000 Shelter+Challenge with