Course Overview

This course explores all aspects of practical infectious disease management in animal shelters, including prevention, diagnosis, management, and outbreak investigations.

Course Content

Animals in shelters face a higher risk of infectious disease than companion animals in most other settings. While it is inevitable that sick animals will occasionally enter shelters (as well as rescue/ foster/ HQHVSN settings), disease transmission and endemic disease in animal shelters and shelter-associated programs can usually be prevented. Actions taken by shelter staff and veterinarians can mean the difference between a couple of sick animals and a large-scale outbreak.

In this course, students will use shelter cases to learn about how various diseases occur in companion animal populations; how to prevent, diagnose, and manage these diseases in diverse shelter resource settings including those involving foster homes; and what to do if an outbreak does occur. Emphasis will be on practical knowledge and strategies that go beyond individual diagnostic testing, disinfection, and vaccination to uncover why animals in shelters get sick and what shelter professionals can do to minimize disease.

Enrollment Information

  • Course Lead Instructors: Emilia Wong Gordon, DVM, DABVP (Shelter Medicine Practice)
  • Course Number: VME 6934 all sections
  • Semester Credit Hours: 3
  • Term: Spring
  • SyllabusSyllabus
  • Pre-Requisites/Co-Requisites: Access to a local animal shelter where you can gather population data and have access to animal shelter software reports.