Canine Parvovirus surfaced in the 1970’s and has caused thousands of deaths predominantly in non-vaccinated puppies. This virus is very contagious between individual dogs with the puppy being the most vulnerable. It is the de la Houssaye Animal Hospitals experience that the following conditions lead to infection in puppies:
- Non-vaccination of puppies by a licensed veterinarian who is trained to adhere to the recommended protocol.
- Administration of the vaccine by the owner, obtained through mail order.
- Use of a vaccine that is not handled properly or administered properly.
- Poor hygiene with the puppy and it’s environment.
This disease is usually characterized by bloody vomiting and diarrhea, lethargy and fever. The diarrhea has a very foul smell to it and is very watery. If left untreated, the disease can progress to the heart and cause heart failure. The treatment does not consist of a cure but includes supporting the puppy with appropriate medication until the disease runs its course. Even with treatment, the puppy can still die. It is the de la Houssaye Animal Hospitals experience that if the puppy receives treatment soon enough, the puppy will usually survive.
Because of the nature of the virus, this is why it is so important to start a vaccination program with all dogs as soon as possible. If diagnosed with parvo, decontamination of the environment is a must to avoid reinfection and spreading of this disease to other dogs.
DOGS DO NOT HAVE TO COME IN CONTACT WITH OTHER DOGS TO CONTRACT THIS TERRIBLE DISEASE!!! IT IS THAT CONTAGIOUS!!!
We can not stress enough the importance of a proper program administered by a veterinarian. This disease is very easily avoided if the proper methods are used. Don’t fall victim to improper processes that can lead to an unfortunate situation!