Michigan Animal Health Update: Issue 2, September 2015


Issue 2, September 2015

Michigan Animal Welfare Grants

Applications due November 2


Each year animal shelters may apply and receive grant funds from the Animal Welfare Fund which receives contributions from Michigan taxpayers and is administered by the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development. Many veterinarians participate in these grants through their local shelters by accepting grant-funded spay/neuter vouchers, performing in-house shelter alterations and many other projects enhancing shelter animal care and increase the number of altered animals that are adopted. The Animal Welfare Grant program focuses on providing funds to: promote sterilization and adoption of dogs and cats; improve knowledge of the proper care of animals to comply with state animal anticruelty laws by educating the public and training personnel authorized by law to enforce state animal anti-cruelty laws; support and enhance programs providing for the care and protection of animals in accordance with state anti-cruelty laws; allow the purchase of equipment and supplies for programs receiving grants; and cost share for the care, housing and veterinary medical care for animals being housed for violations of Chapter IX, where sentencing does not provide for all or part of the costs. These funds are available to registered animal control shelters and animal protection shelters. Each grant has a maximum of $10,000 and applications are due November 2. If you work with a shelter, please encourage them to apply by visiting www.michigan.gov/animalshelters. The 2016 grant applications will be posted by October 2. Questions? Contact Debbie Mulvaney at (517) 284-5684 or animalshelters@michigan.gov

Hot Topic:

Seneca Valley Virus


A viral, vesicular disease in swine is gaining attention at the national level. Seneca Valley virus is a small, non-enveloped picornavirus in the same family of viruses as foot-and-mouth disease virus and swine vesicular disease virus. SVV causes lesions in swine that are indistinguishable from FMD requiring a Foreign Animal Disease Diagnostician to investigate and rule out FMD for each case. Traditionally, SVV has not caused severe disease in swine herds, but according to Dr. Paul Sundberg, the director of the new Swine Health Information Center, recent cases in the U.S. seem to be more virulent than in the past. Studies are underway to identify why that may be, but speculation is it may be a “hotter” strain from Brazil. Since June 2014, 14 positive cases of SVV have been diagnosed in the U.S., which is a significantly higher number than in previous years. Some of the cases have occurred at county and state fairs, which can create a significant amount of epidemiological work. At this time, there have been no cases of SVV in Michigan. The SHIC has created a technical overview of the disease which includes disinfection, clinical signs and other virus information.

Program Spotlight:

Polly McKillop: Shelters 


Michigan is home to approximately 195 registered animal shelters - about 60 percent are private shelters and 40 percent are run by municipalities or government. The Animal Industry Division's Shelter Program is responsible for registering animal shelters; including both animal control shelters which are municipal, open admission shelters and animal protection shelters which are closed admission facilities typically operated by private, mostly non-profit organizations. AID and our shelter program staff handle a number of issues regarding shelter and animal control operations including:

  • Addressing daily inquiries regarding animal shelter and animal control issues.
  • Investigating public complaints in partnership with animal control, law enforcement and anti-cruelty agencies.
  • Visiting shelters at least once a year for annual comprehensive inspections.
  • Meeting with animal control and animal law enforcement agencies annually.
  • Participating in outreach and educational programs around the state regarding shelter requirements and current companion animal issues.
  • Monitoring the shelters for ongoing compliance in veterinary care, housing, sanitation and good biosecurity measures to prevent and reduce the spread of illness, required recordkeeping, proper animal adoptions, legal importation of animals and proper animal transport in vehicles among other requirements. 
  • Ensuring the services of at least one licensed veterinarian are available and listed on their shelter registration record with us.

The veterinarians in our shelters are essential and valued collaborators in establishing meaningful animal care standard operating procedures and protocols to protect animal health and if necessary, provide effective treatments. We are extremely appreciative of all the efforts of our current and past shelter veterinarians on the behalf of Michigan’s animal shelters. For resources on shelter medicine please visit the Association of Shelter Veterinarian’s website at www.sheltervet.org. You can also view a list of Michigan’s currently registered shelters, and other MDARD resources, on our shelter webpage at www.michigan.gov/animalshelters. Please contact me if you have any questions about Michigan shelters by email or call at 517-284-5682.


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Put it on the Calendar:

World Rabies Day
September 28
More Information

2015 MVMA Animal 

Welfare Conference
November 23
More Information


Contact the Animal Industry Division:

Constitution Hall
525 West Allegan Street
6th Floor, P.O. Box 30017
Lansing, MI 48909


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