Rescue Groups Helping Arizona Shelter Hit By Deadly Strep Zoo

This month, a busy Arizona Animal Shelter was hit with an outbreak of Strep Zoo, a deadly upper respiratory infection which can lead to pneumonia. Dozens of dogs at Maricopa County Animal Care and Control’s East Valley Animal Care Center in Mesa are currently showing signs of the contagious bacterial infection.

After the outbreak was identified, the animal shelter reached out to the public about the deadly situation:

“We are dealing with severe cases of Upper Respiratory Infections at the shelter…more specifically in the East shelter. We need to clear out as much space as possible in case we need to go into a quarantine situation. Please help us clear space by adopting out our animals. We will continue FREE adoptions through this Friday, January 26th.”

A subsequent post advised that the free adoption promotion had been extended:

“We are extending FREE adoptions through Sunday! We MUST clear out space at West and get dogs from East who are not feeling well into quiet homes. Without your help more dogs could end up getting sicker and dying. PLEASE HELP! PLEASE ADOPT! PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE SHARE!”

The animal shelter is receiving assistance from area rescue groups who are helping cover costs associated with the infected dogs, and the free adoption promotion – the shelter explained:

“Thank you so much to Two Pups Wellness Fund for supplying our sick guys and gals their medication! Thank you to Arizona Animal Rescue Mission for paying the licensing fees so we can adopt out our animals for FREE until Sunday.”

In addition to helping defray the costs associated with treating the ailing animals, the Arizona Animal Rescue Mission is funding large scale transports of healthy animals from the non-impacted shelter to help free up space for incoming animals.

According to AZ Central, area residents are able to assist the impacted shelter as well. Volunteer dog walkers are needed to help provide the homeless dogs, who are currently not being allowed to interact with other dogs, with much-needed outings. Shelter spokesman Jose Santiago explained, “As you can imagine, when a dog is sitting in a kennel for 24 hours, they can get restless.”

Individuals who are interested in learning more about volunteer opportunities should call  602-506-7387.

 People who have recently adopted a dog from the Mesa shelter should watch for signs of Streptococcus zooepidemicus symptoms can include: coughing, vomiting, lethargy, labored breathing and nasal discharge. Dogs exhibiting symptoms should be taken to a veterinarian for treatment.

Arizona Animal Rescue Mission on Facebook here.

(Images via Pixabay)

Penny Eims

Penny is a freelance writer who provided content to her National Dog News column at for 8 years. She is a current contributor to Fido Friendly Magazine, as well as a newly formed website, Pet Rescue Report. Penny is married and she has two rescued German shepherds and two kids.

1 comment

  1. Janeym says:

    While the helping relocate healthy animals from shelters with this awful outbreak of Strep-zoo, i do worry about the impact of offering “free” adoptions, leaving those offered up prone & vulnerable to the unscuplious. Cant the fee just be lowered while AARM funds the transport??

Add a comment

(Your email will not be displayed.)