Airborne virus causing concern at Muhlenberg Co. Humane Society - 14 News, WFIE, Evansville, Henderson, Owensboro

Airborne virus causing concern at Muhlenberg Co. Humane Society

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The Muhlenberg County Humane Society is trying to combat a problem they've been dealing with for about a month now: a virus that has been sweeping through their cat and kitten population.

On Tuesday, directors decided that the shelter will temporarily stop taking in cats or kittens because of an outbreak of what's called Feline Upper Respiratory Infection.

It's an airborne virus causing teary eyes at first. Then the cat or kitten will start sneezing.  That is followed by mucus, and then blood coming out their nose or mouth.

"It is the worst thing I've seen in cats or kittens," says Laura Armstrong, President of Muhlenberg Humane Society.

The shelter says that for the past month, as soon as they get a handle on the disease, it comes right back. Several cats and kittens have died from it.

Now as soon as one shows symptoms, that animal is moved to an isolation room to prevent the spread of the virus. On the right, you can see a picture of a healthy cat.  And then that same cat less than 12 hours later, after coming in contact with the virus.

"And we know that we have to move them to isolation and hope that they will live with the medication. Most of the time they don't.  It just breaks out heart and our staff that works diligently to try and keep them alive."

Directors say they will probably begin accepting cats and kittens next week. All cats and kittens currently at the shelter are being given antibiotics to try and protect them from this virus.

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