City of Dallas investigates tick infestation in shelter quarantine

A family's complaint prompted the city of Dallas to investigate a tick infestation in the quarantine area of the city's animal shelter.

Reggie, the family’s dog, is doing better now with help from medication. What happened to him while he was in the shelter's quarantine is something his owners say no dog should go through.

The family adopted their pet from the city’s animal shelter more than eight years ago. After what the owner describes as traumatic, they're hoping the city will quickly remedy a problem involving ticks.

His name is Reggie, and he’s a terrier mix moving even slower than expected for a 15-year-old pooch. He’s recovering after emergency treatment for ticks.

Reggie’s owner, Lyndsay Rather, says they had to surrender him for a 10-day quarantine with Dallas Animal Services because she says, while skittish from fireworks going off, he bit a family member during the Fourth of July holiday.

Rather says while driving away with him from the shelter, she noticed something was terribly wrong.  She took him directly to their vet.

“I said it looks like there are at least 60. They said no, there’s hundreds of them if not a thousand,” she recalled. “I had to help hold him down while we removed as many as we could.”

At the height of it all, Rather posted pics on social media that are too graphic to show. He’s improving with pain meds and antibiotics. Dead ticks are still falling off of Reggie.

The city of Dallas has responded and says an investigation into the matter has confirmed a tick infestation in the quarantine area of the shelter.

In a statement, they said “An immediate review of DAS kennels was conducted and it was discovered that 30 of the 500 animal kennels at the shelter, all within the quarantined dog area for bite dogs, had a tick issue between dogs. Today, all dogs in the quarantine room were given tick protection medicine to resolve the issue. Dallas Animal Services’ primary focus is the care of our animals. Immediate action was taken once the issue was brought to our attention.”

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