DE SOTO, Iowa — AHeinz57 Pet Rescue and Transport is going through another round of testing for canine brucellosis after being under quarantine since May.
The quarantine and continuous testing began after the rescue purchased dogs at a puppy mill auction and one of the dogs that went somewhere else tested positive for the disease.
The 31 puppy mill dogs have already been through three rounds of testing.
“We are testing the all 71. We have 31 in front and 40 in the back, and it’s going to take all day to do it,” AHeinz57 Pet Rescue and Transport CEO Amy Heinz said.
Heinz said they are more concerned about the 40 dogs in the back of their main shelter that they have to test even though they never came in contact with the puppy mill dogs.
“That’s going to be a huge undertaking because we’ve still got some of the feral forest dogs. Some of the flood dogs are still pretty feral, so we’re going to have to sedate probably 14 to 16 of those dogs just to draw blood,” Heinz said.
Heinz said she is afraid there is no end in sight to the continuous testing and quarantine.
“The screening test is 40% to 60% inaccurate, so we’re doing 71 tests. The odds of getting a false positive on somebody in a situation like that is pretty good,” Heinz said.
But they haven’t lost hope yet. “If all of the puppy mill dogs — minus Zane, Watson and Will — if they all come back negative, they can go,” Heinz said.
This whole situation has also inspired the rescue to make some changes and add on to their property to hopefully avoid situations like this in the future.
“So what we want to do is bump this garage out 24 feet. It’s 45 feet deep, so that would give us ample space to set up in an intake area and a quarantine area where dogs that are coming in will be kept until we know they don’t have anything,” Heinz said.
If you want to help or donate, you can do that by going to the Aheinz 57 Pet Rescue Facebook Page.