Caring Hands Humane Society back open after parvovirus outbreak


The Caring Hands Humane Society is back open Tuesday in Newton after a parvovirus outbreak inside their facility killed three dogs.

Dogs inside the facility are able to find their forever homes again after the managers were forced to close the facility for five days. People were already there to adopt dogs.

"Seemed like we had a connection," said Micheal Akins, a man who was adopting a dog. "He came right up to me, we looked at each others eyes and it's like a connection."

According to the humane society's Facebook page, a dog infected with the parvovirus was admitted there on September 22. Employees at the facility said they didn't think much about it, because they thought the dog was just sick. The dog was then tested for the virus and it tested positive. By that time it had infected three other dogs, which then forced them to temporarily close operations.

"We needed to just quarantine them all to their own cells and that way we can see who is really having what symptoms," Cynthia Sutcliffe, the marketing coordinator for the humane society.

Three of the dogs died just one day after they closed the facility. Sutcliffe said there are several symptoms out there people can look for. The humane society also posted those symptoms on their Facebook page as well as how the virus gets passed around. She said it can spread very rapidly and your dog can get it from just about anywhere if not vaccinated for the parvovirus.

"It can be in the soil anywhere that you go," Sutcliffe said. "You take your dogs and if they're not vaccinated then they're going to be at risk for exposure."

Workers had to clean every corner of the facility before they could reopen. They didn't make that decision until no other dogs tested positive for the virus.

"We can say, I think we're all clear and just try to go back to normal," Sutcliffe said.

Giving people like Michael Akins a chance to come in and adopt one of man's best friends.

"Very exciting, very rewarding," Akins said. "Just completes the family."

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