OVMA Recognizes Veterinarians, Clinic Staff and Animal Health Companies Who
Volunteered to Help During the York Region SPCA Ringworm Crisis

MILTON, ON, June 29 /CNW/ - On May 11th, when the Ontario Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (OSPCA) was faced with the possibility of having to euthanize the animals at its York Region shelter in response to an outbreak of ringworm, the Ontario Veterinary Medical Association (OVMA) extended an offer of assistance in the hope of saving as many of the animals as possible. The following day, the OSPCA asked OVMA to help relocate 114 animals into isolation units in veterinary facilities for one month where they could be tested and/or treated for ringworm.

OVMA reached out to members, animal and human health specialists, and the animal health industry in an effort to secure safe placement, treatment and proper handling protocols for the animals. Veterinarians across Ontario generously offered their assistance and, within 48 hours, temporary homes had been found, or were in the process of being found, for all of the remaining animals at the York Region shelter.

OVMA would like to sincerely thank all of the veterinary hospitals that offered to take in pets from the shelter. "Volunteer clinics signed up for more than just boarding when they agreed to take in one of these animals, including medicated bathing for each shelter animal twice a week, regular ringworm testing and overall care for each animal - many clinics also dealt with ongoing inquiries from the general public who wanted reassurance that the animals were safe", commented Doug Raven, OVMA Chief Executive Officer. A sincere thank-you goes out to all of the veterinarians and clinic staff who dedicated their time, facilities and assistance in an effort to save these animals. The animals fostered in volunteer veterinary facilities remained the property of the OSPCA throughout the temporary relocation process.

OVMA also extends its sincere appreciation to Merial Canada for providing free Itrafungol medication for cats, and Borderlink Veterinary Supplies for supplying the OSPCA with free gowns and gloves to assist with the decontamination of the York region shelter.  The association would also like to thank Dr. Scott Weese, Associate Professor in the Department of Pathobiology at the University of Guelph, and Public Health and Zoonotic Disease microbiologist for the University's Centre for Public Health and Zoonoses and Dr. Tony Yu, Dermatologist in the Department of Clinical Studies at the University of Guelph. Dr. Weese and Dr. Yu provided helpful instructions for hospitals taking in animals from the shelter to ensure that the ringworm fungus wasn't spread to other patients or staff.

Thank-you to everyone who helped, or offered to help out during this crisis, your collective generosity and compassion has made a difference.

The Ontario Veterinary Medical Association represents Ontario veterinarians in private practice, government, academia, industry and public service. Its mandate is to advance and promote excellence in the veterinary profession in Ontario, and contribute to the betterment of animal health and the protection of human health.

SOURCE Ontario Veterinary Medical Association

For further information: For further information:

For all media inquiries, please contact:

Melissa Carlaw

OVMA Manager of Communications & Public Relations

905.875.0756, ext 15, mcarlaw@ovma.org

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Ontario Veterinary Medical Association

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