Thursday, August 29, 2013

Canine Distemper outbreak in Texas Big Cat Sanctuary

In June, when I wrote about Canine Distemper affecting big cats, I didn't expect it to have United States implications.

(image from Wikimedia commons, not one of the tigers affected)

There's a wildlife refuge in North Texas, In-Sync Exotics Wildlife Rescue and Education Center, they've lost their 6th tiger to distemper; they think it may have been spread by raccoons clambering about the outdoor cages. According to the Washington Post article, there is a distemper vaccine for ferrets and for canines; "the canine one is unsafe for big cats, and there's no evidence of the ferret vaccine being effective in the cats."

The refuge is still open, evidently, and the virus poses no threat to humans. But what a tremendous shame, all of those beautiful animals. According to another article on the Dallas-Fort Worth CBS web site, 15 other cats are currently suffering from canine distemper. I hope that they're somehow able to pull through.


  1. Poor Kitties. You'd think that if this is so common they would have developed a vaccine by now. Hope so anyways.

  2. That's very sad. I hope it stops spreading.

  3. I hope they are working on a viable vaccine or a way to protect these magnificent animals from raccoons.

  4. Raccoons are very big disease spreaders. I hope they find a way to help these cats.