A ringworm outbreak has forced the Kamloops SPCA to close its doors and halt further pet adoptions for the next two weeks.
Animal care attendant Tammy Makortoff said two cats showed signs of infection earlier this week, prompting the shelter's immediate closure.
"We've had to limit exposure in order to prevent the spread of the disease," said Makortoff.
Symptoms include itchy, raised and red scaly patches on the animal's skin, she said.
Staff and volunteers remain on duty to care of the animals but must wear protective mask, gloves and other clothing to prevent the disease from spreading.
Only dogs that have already been processed for adoption will be admitted to the shelter on Eighth Street in North Kamloops. No more dogs, cats or other small animals will be considered.
"We're not accepting any more applications because we're trying to limit the number of people coming in (to the shelter)," she said.
Bob Busch, general manager of operations for the B.C. SPCA, said the shelter has no intention of putting the animals down.
Instead, they are being treated in lime and given antibiotics to kill the ringworm.
"It's not a lethal condition," he said. "But it is very contagious and can quickly spread."
Busch said there is nothing to suggest the infection has spread beyond the shelter, but he encourages pet owners to check their animals just in case.
"If you have any concerns, please see your veterinarian," he said.
Ringworm is a fungal infection that often appears after hot, wet summers, which are perfect for fungal growth. Busch said ringworm shows up every year, and has appeared in about a half dozen shelters across the province this summer.
The outbreak at the SPCA hasn't resulted in an influx of pets being brought to the Kamloops and District Humane Society. But president Barbara Zibrik said it could come.
The Humane Society houses pets in foster homes. As a result, she said there hasn't been a case of ringworm within the Kamloops operation in 12 to 13 years.
"So far we've been lucky," said Zibrik.