Homeless animals enter into care and placement programs from many sources, often without prior preventative health care. Some animals are already sick, injured, stressed, parasitized or otherwise vulnerable to developing disease on arrival. Most have potential to either acquire or transmit infectious disease.
Without a systematic approach to infection control that focuses on creating healthy animals, those who care for homeless animals in their home environments risk creating situations that can ultimately lead to decreased welfare. Strong environmental, medical, and behavioral health care practices are the foundation of a foster program placing ever-increasing numbers of healthy, friendly animals into the community.
Dr. Spindel is currently a student advocate and shelter medicine consultant with the Veterinary Information Network, as well as affiliate faculty at the Colorado State University department of clinical sciences. A two-term past president of the Association of Shelter Veterinarians, she is the former Senior Director of Shelter Medicine at the ASPCA. Dr. Spindel believes that the world within an animal shelter is rich in opportunity for veterinary education and research integrated with improving the lives of animals. Her research interests are canine influenza virus, upper respiratory diseases and infectious disease management.