Global cat vaccination shortage impacting the Ballarat Animal Shelter

Generic image of cat at the shelter

Due to the extreme cat vaccine shortage occurring worldwide, the Ballarat Animal Shelter has limited capacity to take on unvaccinated cats or kittens currently.  

The global shortage has left the shelter with no provision to vaccinate cats and kittens upon entry. Having unvaccinated cats within the facility will lead to risks of outbreaks of respiratory viral disease and feline panleukopenia, which can be fatal and detrimental to the current population of cats currently at the shelter.

The Ballarat Animal Shelter is not alone in the impact of the global cat vaccine shortage, with many shelters and veterinary practices commencing similar processes to help keep cats safe and healthy.  

The situation will be closely monitored, and the Ballarat Animal Shelter will resume normal procedures as soon as it is safe to do so.  

Wherever possible, residents are encouraged to consider alternative options before surrendering unvaccinated, healthy cats. This may include speaking to your local veterinary practice regarding veterinary costs, seeking support from friends or family members, or contacting the Ballarat Animal Shelter if you are struggling to meet the costs of pet food.  

Surrendering any unvaccinated cats or kittens to the shelter places them at risk of being exposed to potentially fatal diseases.  

As any kittens that come into the facility are unable to be vaccinated, the Ballarat Animal Shelter is encouraging residents to consider other avenues prior to surrendering to council.

If you need advice around surrendering your cat or kitten, please contact the Ballarat Animal Shelter and next steps can be discussed.  

At this time, the cat trapping program is also suspended, unfortunately any cats brought in via trapping cannot be impounded at the shelter. Any cat nuisance complaints will be handled by the Animal Management team. The shelter is unfortunately unable to take any trapped cats during this period.  

These measures are to ensure what’s best for the animals currently at the shelter, to mitigate the risk of illness to all animals. It also aims to ensure that the Shelter is not condemning any new impounded cats or kittens arriving to being exposed to disease, as they are unable to be protected with a vaccination schedule.

The Ballarat Animal Shelter thanks the community for their patience and compassion at this difficult time.