Montgomery County Animal Shelter Temporarily Closing Some Services Due to COVID-19 & Distemper

By: Montgomery County Animal Shelter Texas
| Published 08/17/2021


MONTGOMERY COUNTY, TX -- The Montgomery County Animal Shelter ('MCAS') has noted a rise in the presence of upper respiratory illnesses. In dogs, Distemper in particular and in humans, COVID-19. This seems to be all across the region as many shelters are battling these diseases. We will focus on various resources for treating the sick animals and will work hard to get healthy adoptable animals out of MCAS. We are asking for the community's help by fostering, rescue group assistance and adoptions. MCAS has identified some animals that have been diagnosed with Distemper. We want the public to be aware but not afraid to help by fostering and/or adopting. In order to be successful in these lifesaving efforts we need the help of our community. We also want to very strongly encourage everyone to have their pets up to date with vaccinations. In addition to the increase in respiratory illness, MCAS staff have been battling the presence of COVID-19 among staff members as well. This has caused a decrease in staffing abilities. Therefore, we will be limiting our services for at least two weeks as we regroup and continue to mitigate disease.

We will be closing our intake services during this time as this is crucial for us to have the ability to continue our testing of the current animal population. We also need our current animal population to stay stable or decrease so we can adequately care for those animals with our limited staff due to COVID-19 spread. We will be taking active measures to reduce non-essential shelter intake. If you have a situation with a stray animal, please contact animal control 936-442-7738, option 2. Animal control can then assess the situation. Please do NOT pick up any stray animals unless you are personally willing to shelter the animal(s) (house, care for, feed, etc.). If you need assistance with resources to shelter the found animal(s) you can reach out to us at: You can also network these animals on social media such as on your neighborhood pages to find their owners. Wellness services will continue but will be performed outside or drive through type service.

By fostering you could be an integral piece to saving lives. MCAS will provide any treatments or medications needed for the foster animals. Your personal dog(s) would have to be up to date and current on vaccinations even though the foster animal will need to be kept completely separate.

MCAS has identified respiratory illness symptoms in some of our population as well as in animals who have been fostered or adopted. Dogs in our care who are suspected of having distemper are isolated, treated and tested. Staff are carefully monitoring the animals for signs of illness in the apparently healthy population, however we are performing shelter wide testing.

Distemper symptoms may include the following:

• Thick nasal discharge

• Coughing

• Sneezing

• Crusting eyes

• Fever

• Tremors

• Seizures

We are working on different protocols to minimize the spread of disease. If you should have a dog that you are wanting to surrender to MCAS, please give us the opportunity to vaccinate the animal(s) before surrendering. Even if you are only able to keep the animal for a limited amount of time that could increase the immunity that will develop from the vaccine to protect the animal from various diseases.

Anyone who has adopted a dog from MCAS in the past 30 days and has a dog that is showing symptoms as noted above, please contact MCAS for potential treatment options at We will provide treatment to the extent of our capabilities. If an adopter is unwilling or unable to care for a sick or potentially sick dog, MCAS will accept the dog back (no charge).

As a member of our community, even if you have not adopted a dog from a shelter or rescue should you notice any of the above listed symptoms in your personal dog(s), please take the dog(s) to your veterinarian. We strongly recommend that the general public ensure their dogs are current on all necessary vaccinations: distemper, parvo, parainfluenza, bordetella and rabies (as required by state law). Please also follow our social media as we have been holding free vaccine events for pets.

Challenges arise from time to time and we are asking for our community's help and support. Everyone can help by fostering, adopting, donating and volunteering.

MCAS will be open 12:00 Noon - 5:00pm Tuesday through Sunday.

We will re-evaluate in two weeks to determine the next steps.

Again, PLEASE make sure your pets are vaccinated! We also encourage humans to get vaccinated!

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