Roanoke Valley SPCA recommends backup plan for pet care in case household struck by coronavirus


ROANOKE, Va. (WFXR) — As the number of coronavirus cases around the U.S. continues to rise, the Roanoke Valley SPCA urges the community to plan ahead in terms of animal care in case owners come down with any serious illness.

The coronavirus is a respiratory illness spread via droplets. The shelter says it has a daily cleaning process in place proven to prevent the spread of this type of illness. According to the shelter, this cleaning protocol includes washing and sanitizing hands, separating animals who may be ill, and wiping down door handles.

“The shelter is working to keep pets and humans in good health and minimize the risk of infection,” says Roanoke Valley SPCA.

While health officials have yet to confirm any cases of the coronavirus in the Commonwealth or of coronavirus transmission from humans to pets, the Roanoke Valley SPCA urges residents to coordinate with a relative or friend who can accommodate your pet(s) in case someone in your household gets sick or requires hospitalization. Furthermore, the organization recommends that pet owners keep crates, food, and extra supplies handy in case pets need to be moved quickly.

If boarding does become necessary, the shelter says it is extra important to keep all animal vaccines up to date and document all medications with dosages and administering instructions. Also, all pets should have a collar — and, ideally, a microchip — for identification purposes, the shelter says.

In case any of the Roanoke Valley SPCA staff members become impacted by the coronavirus outbreak and can no longer assist with pets, the shelter is asking members of the Roanoke community to fill out a foster application.

For more information about the Roanoke Valley SPCA, please contact Suzanne Cresswell at
(540) 339-9520 or


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