Harris County Animal Shelter says rumors of mass euthanization aren't true

Dozens of dogs and cats at the Harris County Animal Shelter need homes. (HARRIS COUNTY ANIMAL SHELTER)
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KHOU 11 News received several emails and Facebook posts Thursday about dozens of dogs in danger of being euthanized Friday at the Harris County Animal Shelter.

The rumor apparently started with a Facebook plea by a group called Houston & Harris County Animal Volunteers.

“This is our most desperate plea for help we have ever posted. Every single dog at the shelter that does not have a hold is up for euthanasia at 6pm tomorrow,” the post said. “We write this to you in tears.”

The post said the shelter needed to be emptied because of a distemper outbreak.

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We contacted the Harris County Animal Shelter and spokesperson Kerry McKeel said the mass euthanization rumors aren’t true.

McKeel said they are dealing with a distemper outbreak, which is not uncommon. About 20 of the nearly 100 dogs tested this week had distemper.

Fourteen of them were moved to a medical rescue facility or foster care. Six others had to be euthanized.

The remaining 77 dogs tested negative. They have all been given a distemper shot and are being monitored for symptoms.

McKeel said new dogs being surrendered are also being vaccinated and are being kept in quarantine for a few days until the shot has time to work.

 

The Harris County Animal Shelter followed up with anyone who had adopted a dog since mid-November to make sure none of those dogs got sick.  Only one of those dogs became ill, McKeel said.