Disease that shut down Surrey SPCA turns out to be ringworm

Shelter remains closed while staff treat animals for the fungus.

The Surrey SPCA remains closed due to what has turned out to be a particularly rare form of ringworm.

The animal shelter at 152 Street and 67 Avenue shut down Sept. 2 after six staff were sent home with a mysterious rash.

At first it was thought to be sarcoptic mange, or canine scabies.

But Bob Busch, the general manager for the BCSPCA, told The Leader Wednesday it’s ringworm. Some of the employees are getting better, while others are showing little sign of improvement.

They are being treated with an antifungal ointment to tackle the rash.

They traced the origin of the ringworm to two stray kittens that came into the shelter on Aug. 2.

From there, it spread to seven other cats and a dog. The SPCA is treating them with a chemical bath and in the meantime watching for any other animals that show signs of the ringworm.

Busch said there’s no way to tell at this time when exactly the shelter will reopen.

kdiakiw@surreyleader.com