Cat adoptions have been temporarily suspended at the Bermuda SPCA Shelter on Valley Road in Paget due to Cat ‘flu’.
The Island’s only animal shelter has suspended cat adoptions until Tuesday June 28, while staff and volunteers work to care for the cats and minimize further spread of the ‘flu’ virus.
“We currently have over 40 cats living together waiting to be adopted” say Deborah Titterton Narraway, Interim Executive Director of the Bermuda SPCA.
“This is an extremely high number of cats living in our indoor/outdoor playroom, so we have taken precautions and isolated 2 cats known to have the ‘flu’ as well as an additional 4 sneezing cats”.
The SPCA said, “Cat ‘flu’ is a common illness that affects the upper respiratory tract of felines. Rather like human ‘flu’, cat ‘flu’ is spread by droplets of moisture containing the virus passing from cat to cat, through sneezing, direct contact or sharing food bowls. The virus is passed out of an infected cat in the saliva and nasal discharges [snot].
“There is no treatment for ‘flu’ in cats. Cats just like people, feel pretty miserable when they have the ‘flu’ and plenty of nursing care is needed to help them get over it. All cats at the Shelter will continue to be monitored for signs of the ‘flu’.
“Cat ‘flu’ can be life-threatening to kittens and older cats but the majority of cats recover, although that can take several weeks. Symptoms include sneezing, runny nose and eyes, quiet and subdued behaviour, loss of appetite, high temperature.
“The viruses which cause cat ‘flu’ are quite different from those causing ‘flu’ in humans. A cat cannot catch the disease from a human and humans are not at risk of catching it whilst nursing a sick cat.”
“Our staff and volunteers are making sure the sick cats are receiving lots of TLC” says Jodi Corbett, Humane Education Officer. “The cats are set up in individual cages with comfortable and warm bedding and are given plenty of water to drink.”
“In the meantime, the shelter will remain open to the public. Dog and small mammal adoptions from the shelter are not affected. People wanting to donate can go online at spca.bm/donate. These donations will be used to fund the additional requirements of special needs animals at the SPCA such as vet checks, specialised food and medicine.”
The Bermuda Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals [SPCA] was founded in 1919 and is a Bermuda Registered Charity No. 86 as well as a US 501© not-for-profit.
Their objectives are to: provide effective, lawful means for the prevention of cruelty to animals, promote the education of the general public on the care and wellbeing of all animals, encourage and promote kindness to animals.