Animal Shelters Nationwide Come Together to Create COVID-19 Guide


Kasey Spain
American Pets Alive! Marketing & Communications Senior Manager
(c) 817.456.5370
(e) [email protected]

Animal Shelters Nationwide Come Together to Create COVID-19 Guide

AUSTIN, TX -- American Pets Alive! (AmPA!), the national education and outreach division of Austin Pets Alive! (APA!), is joining forces with animal shelters nationally to create shared, hands-on protocols for all shelters who want to prioritize and ensure that no shelter pet lives are lost as a result of increasing fear around the mutant coronavirus outbreak.

This guide is designed to help animal shelters be prepared and create proactive plans in case of citywide quarantine.

AmPA! COVID-19 Animal Shelter Preparedness Guide is for animal shelters and includes protocols for foster programs, adoptions, found stray pets, medical/disease protocols, intake protocols and more. A readiness checklist is also included for shelters to show how ready they are if disaster strikes. This guide is useful for any animal shelter during a time of disaster or crisis.

Austin Pets Alive! was instrumental in assisting animals in the Houston area during Hurricane Harvey and American Pets Alive! is working in advance, giving guidance to the nation’s largest animal shelters, in hopes of preventing unnecessary deaths of shelter animals.

“The biggest threat to animals in shelters is a shutdown which would prevent government funded shelters from adopting out pets but not prevent them from taking in pets which would result in a dire bottleneck. Our goal in providing these protocols is that shelters would put measures and plans into place that keep pets moving through the system, preventing unnecessary killing,” says Dr. Ellen Jefferson, Executive Director of American Pets Alive!.

According to the World Health Organization1, there is no evidence that companion animals can spread the virus and there is no justification in taking measures against companion animals which may compromise their welfare.

American Pets Alive! recommends animal shelters work now to urgently increase their foster home base to at least half the number of kennels in their shelter in order to prepare for a need to rapidly empty a shelter without using euthanasia.

American Pets Alive! also recommends supporting your local animal shelter by adopting or fostering a pet which allows more space in shelters for a lost or abandoned animal in need.

To help us help animal shelters save more lives, please donate to

American Pets Alive! (AmPA!) is the national education and outreach division of Austin Pets Alive! AmPA! empowers individuals, organizations and communities to transform animal shelter systems and end unnecessary killing of shelter animals. Utilizing lifesaving best practices born in Austin, AmPA! hosts the Maddie’s® Lifesaving Academy with classes, apprenticeships and fellowships, an annual conference and provides ongoing crisis and operations support to shelters around the country. To learn more about AmPA!, visit


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