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Tulsa Animal Welfare Closed Indefinitely to Address Cases of Distemper

This article was archived on 7/10/2022

City of Tulsa Animal Welfare (TAW) is taking proactive measures to stop the spread of canine distemper virus (CDV). 

Starting Friday, May 6, TAW will be closed indefinitely while it works to treat animals and prevent further spread. 

In early March, TAW shortened hours of operation to contain a few isolated cases – a measure that has continued indefinitely as staff work to keep the shelter clean while monitoring the situation. But due to sustained levels of higher-than-normal intakes that have brought distemper into the shelter, an indefinite closure is required to take the proper precautions to ensure all dogs are tested and receive the necessary supportive care to recover.  

During this time, TAW will continue with:  

TAW Operations   

All dogs adopted from TAW have been vaccinated for CDV, but the vaccine is not immediately effective. Adopters should follow up with their personal veterinarian to receive any necessary boosters. 

Effective immediately, TAW will have the following safety protocols in place:  

About Canine Distemper
CDV is a very serious and sometimes fatal viral illness that affects dogs and other members of the Canidae family. It also affects ferrets. The illness can strike a dog at any age, but young, unvaccinated dogs and puppies are most susceptible. The virus is found in bodily secretions and spread via inhalation. Once inhaled, the virus can move to the lymph nodes and then to the blood, spreading to the respiratory, gastrointestinal, urogenital and central nervous systems.  

The City asks dog owners to ensure their dogs are up to date on the CDV vaccine, as it is recognized as one of the most effective vaccines. For more information on CDV and supportive care, visit