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Photo courtesy of Brenda Griffin, DVM
Why Separate Shelter Populations?
Segregating populations
is a strategy to:
• Contain outbreaks of
• Increase safety for
animals and people
How To Separate Shelter Populations
Separate animals by:
• Species
• Health status
• Age
• Physical and behavioral traits
Recommended Housing Areas
Healthy Hold
a shelter should
have these housing
areas for cats and
for dogs
Healthy Hold
Who is Housed Here:
Stray and surrendered
healthy animals until
they are able to be
moved to adoption
If an animal develops
signs of illness,
immediately move the
animal to isolation.
Brenda Griffin, DVM
Who is Housed Here:
Healthy animals
available for adoption.
If an animal develops
signs of illness,
immediately move the
animal to isolation.
Brenda Griffin, DVM
Who is Housed Here:
Create multiple
quarantine areas for
animals considered
potentially dangerous :
• Animals being
observed for rabies
• Animals exposed to
infectious disease but
not yet clinical during
an outbreak situation
Who is Housed Here:
Animals who are
clinically ill
(symptomatic) and
infected with a
communicable disease.
In an isolation space,
the use of barriers and
solid walls can lessen
the transmission of
Additional Housing Areas:
Considering Creating These Spaces in
Your Shelter
Feral Cats
Feral cats can be highly
stressed by the amount
of activity, light, and
noise that are common
in animal housing areas.
A place to hide, low
light, quiet, and limited
activity help reduce
Young animals in the
shelter are at high risk
of illness. Minimize
stress and disease
transmission by
designating separate
housing areas for:
• Juveniles (5 months
and younger)
• Mothers and their
Alternate Housing for Juveniles
Foster care is an
excellent alternative for:
• Mothers and their
nursing litters
• Animals too young to
be adopted
Unvaccinated Animals
Unvaccinated animals
should be housed
separately from those
who have documented
vaccination histories
and have their cage
cards noted.
After vaccination, these
animals may be moved
to the appropriate
housing area.
Multiple Isolation Areas
Set up multiple isolation
areas to prevent injured
animals from getting sick
and to prevent sick
animals from being
exposed to a second
Some agencies may choose
to further separate animals:
• By type of illness (or
suspected illness)
• Animals who are injured
but not otherwise ill