Garland Animal Shelter Fighting to Contain Distemper Outbreak

Canine distemper is a viral illness with no known cure

Garland’s Animal Shelter staff members have confirmed several cases of canine distemper and are taking proactive measure to stop the spread of the disease.

The first case of the illness was reported on July 31.

Staff members started to test other dogs that are showing symptoms of canine distemper, sending nine samples to be tested at the Texas A&M Veterinary Medical Diagnostic Laboratory. Seven came back positive for the disease.

“Garland Animal Services continues to aggressively sanitize the shelter and is collaborating with Cornell University Shelter Medicine specialists to implement appropriate control measures. ALL dogs brought into the shelter will be tested for distemper and closely monitored for any symptoms. It is already routine to vaccinate every animal for distemper. Garland Animal Services also will work with rescue groups,” according to a press release sent out by the City of Garland.

Canine distemper is a viral illness with no known cure. The disease can impact dogs and other forms of wildlife, such as forest animals.

The disease attacks the tonsils and lymph nodes of an animal and eventually will attack the respiratory and nervous systems.

Some symptoms of canine distemper include high fever, reddened eyes and watery discharge.

The shelter is urging anyone who may have adopted a dog in the past six weeks that is showing symptoms of the virus, to email the shelter at

Contact Us