The City of Coronado has placed its Animal Care Facility under a self-imposed, 10-day quarantine to curtail a ringworm outbreak.
After coming into contact with an infected feral cat, several City employees and a facility volunteer were found to have been infected with the skin fungus. All are being treated and will be completely free of the ringworm, which is a common concern in shelters around the country.
“It is part of the peril of having a facility that accepts all animals, including feral cats,” said Coronado Police Cmdr. Laszlo Waczek, who oversees the Animal Care Facility. “You can’t see it unless you’re looking for it.”
Animal Care Facility workers were unaware of the infection until it was visible on the skin of several employees. They were seen by a doctor. The infection was correctly diagnosed late last week.
The quarantine will be lifted September 14. The City conducted a thorough cleaning of all the Animal Care Facility kennels with bleach and hot water. All animals were bathed with a special medicated shampoo. The quarantine period will allow the City to evaluate the animals during what is considered a standard incubation period to identify any additional infected animals.
Although the Animal Care Facility’s doors will be open to the public during regular hours over the next 10 days, the following rules will be in place:
- No public contact with any animals
- No adoptions
- No dog walking
The City of Coronado is taking this extra measure to ensure no other infections occur in people or animals. All new animals brought into the shelter will be separated from the current population.
The infected feral cat has been quarantined and is being treated. When it recovers, it will be put up for adoption.
What is ringworm?
Ringworm is a common fungal infection of the skin and is not due to a worm.
How is ringworm spread?
Ringworm is contagious and is spread through skin-to-skin contact with a person or animal that has it. Dogs and cats can get it.
What are the symptoms?
Ringworm usually starts out looking like a small red dot and slowly gets larger. This is usually accompanied by dry flaky skin, itching and possible rash. It often makes a pattern resembling a ring.
How is it treated?
Ringworm can usually be treated with over-the-counter antifungal creams or oral medications. Home remedies cannot cure ringworm.
Source: City of Coronado
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