CUMBERLAND COUNTY, Pa. (WHTM) — Speranza Animal Shelter said that they are in crisis mode after all 50 dogs at the shelter ended up sick.
All of the dogs on the property, which is a total of 50 dogs, have been tested and are waiting on results that should come back today, according to Speranza Animal Shelter.
The shelter initially thought that this was a case of canine influenza, but a Facebook post confirmed that no dogs tested positive for canine influenza.
The same Facebook post also states the dogs tested positive for Streptococcus zooepidemicus, which is rarely contagious for humans but can be passed from animal to animal.
According to the CDC, canine influenza is a contagious respiratory disease in dogs, that is similar to when humans get the flu.
The dogs have runny noses, fever, cough, and they’re lethargic. The flu swept through the shelter after Speranza said they brought in a rescue dog from a shelter in Philadelphia.
There weren’t any signs of illness when the new dog was brought in, however dogs at the shelter began getting sick over the weekend.
On Wednesday, Speranza said they were notified that there was an outbreak of influenza about the shelter in Philadelphia. Volunteers are now pulling extra hours and giving the sick dogs fluids.
Three dogs were hospitalized, but they have since returned to the rescue.
“It just started with two dogs coughing and then all within like three or four days, everyone went downhill,” explained Janine Guido, the president and founder of Speranza Animal Rescue. “In all 11 years, I’ve never had something this bad. We do our best, all shelters and rescues do their best, but sometimes it just happens.”
Speranza says they have raised over $60,000 through donations. These donations are going toward vet bills and the care needed for these dogs.
The shelter is also accepting donations like bedding, sheets, towels, blankets, trash bags, and laundry detergent. There is a drop-off location at the shelter, located at 1216 Brandt Road in Mechanicsburg.