An Account of Volunteering at a Humane Society and the Diseases Animals Could Have: Feline Leukemia Virus (FeLV), Canine Infectious Tracheobronchitis, and Rabies

For my second quarter enrichment, I volunteered at the human society because I love animals and have always had an interest in them. Also if people didn’t volunteer their time there would be no one to take care of the animals and they would have to put them down and I can’t stand to think about that. While working there I learned about many different animals and some of the things they need to survive. I also learned about the different kinds of diseases that cats and dogs have.

The main disease I learned about for cats is called Feline leukemia virus (FeLV) infection is responsible for more deaths among cats than any other infectious disease. Some of the symptoms in the first 246 weeks of getting feline leukemia are; fever, apathy, loss of appetite and weight, vomiting, constipation and diarrhea, Half of the cats infected with it die within six months and 80% die within 3.5 years. Feline leukemia is very contagious if a cat with it comes in contact with another cat the other cat will get it There is a vaccination that is given to a cat that has it but it doesn’t cure it, it just makes sure it doesn’t get any worse.

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We learned about this at the humane society because when we clean out the cages we let the cats run around but if a cat has feline leukemia someone must hold the cat while someone else cleans the cage. The main disease that I learned about for dogs was canine infectious tracheobronchitis more commonly known as kennel cough.

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The main symptom of kennel cough is that the dog will have loud coughing and wheezing and it sounds like the dog is choking. Other symptoms include runny nose, sneezing, eye discharge, loss of appetite, and decreased energy level. This disease is also very contagious; however the dog will not die from it unlike cat leukemia. Most dogs with kennel cough recover completely within three weeks on their own without medication though it can take up to six weeks in older dogs, or those with other medical conditions. If a dog has ongoing kennel cough it could get an infection which can lead to pneumonia. The most important disease that we had to watch out for that can be in cats and dogs was rabies. At first the animal may be apprehensive, nervous, anxious, and could have a fever. Friendly animals may become shy or irritable and may bite, whereas, aggressive animals may become affectionate. Most animals will constantly lick where they were bit. The animal may become restless and irritable. As they become more restless, they begin to roam and become more irritable and vicious. The animal may have seizures and then will eventually die. The worst part of rabies is that humans could get it, but there is a cure for humans if you notice the signs and get to a doctor immediately. There is no treatment for this disease for animals though, and it is very spreadable.

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An Account of Volunteering at a Humane Society and the Diseases Animals Could Have: Feline Leukemia Virus (FeLV), Canine Infectious Tracheobronchitis, and Rabies. (2022, Jul 25). Retrieved from

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