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Unidentified illness impacts kitten adoptions in Dare County

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DARE COUNTY, N.C. – The Outer Banks SPCA has recently identified an illness impacting kittens across Dare County.

Since mid-June, kittens in its care have showed symptoms such as lethargy, unsteadiness in their movement and general signs of weakness. While the actual illness has yet to be determined, extensive veterinary consultation and state laboratory testing indicates that the illness is viral.

The SPCA wants to make sure pet owners know these important points to follow any time you choose to bring a new pet into your home from any source:

  • It is extremely important to vaccinate cats and kittens of all ages. If you have recently brought a kitten into your home, please start its vaccine series immediately.
  • Keeping new additions to the family separate from established pets and slowly introducing them is a good way to make sure everyone stays healthy and bonds well.
  • If you have a cat under six months that begins acting lethargic or unsteady, or shows any other symptoms of weakness, please take it to your veterinarian immediately.

The SPCA recommends that all pet owners schedule a visit with your veterinarian if your pet is not current on its vaccines. If you cannot afford a visit to your veterinarian, it recommends you contact animal welfare groups such as Feline Hope, Friends of Felines HI, the Coastal Humane Society or your local SPCA for low-cost vaccination clinics or options for financial assistance.

In order to ensure that it is only placing healthy kittens up for adoption, the Outer Banks SPCA will be limiting kitten adoptions over the next several weeks. Vaccinated adult cats will still be available for adoption.

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