Boone human society facing difficult issues

For Vanessa Heenan, executive director of the Boone Area Humane Society, these are difficult days.

“It’s controlled chaos,” she said. “There is no downtime in animal welfare.”

That’s because the shelter has seen an increase in cat hoarding cases across Boone County and many of these animals are testing positive for feline leukemia.

“We’re seeing more feline leukemia now then we ever have in the past, and I believe it’s due to these hoarding situations,” she said.

FeLV is spread among cats through saliva, blood, nasal secretions, urine or feces. It is also transmitted through bite wounds, deep scratches, sharing food or water bowls, using the same litter box or mutual grooming. It can also be passed on to kittens in the womb and through nursing, according to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. If an animal’s immune system cannot defeat the virus, it can end up shortening its lifespan.

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