Canine parvovirus also referred to as “parvo”, is one of the most terrifying words a new dog owner can hear about their puppy. It doesn’t take long for these small (and sometimes not so small) creatures to find their way into your heart or have you wrapped around their little paws. And this disease, even with top-notch treatment and care, has an extremely high mortality rate. Among dogs who are not treated for parvo, the mortality rate exceeds 90 percent. Emergency Animal Clinic of Topeka wants to change the outcome for every dog possible.
Is there a Vaccination for Parvo?
As a matter of fact, there is a vaccination for parvo. Unfortunately, the disease spreads quickly and strikes the most vulnerable puppies. The virus can decimate a litter before they are old enough for their first set of shots. It is most widely known for the damage it does to younger puppies, but parvo is a condition that can strike at any time. Even if your dog was fortunate enough to escape exposure as a pup; it is always wise to get the vaccine.
What Causes Parvo?
Parvo is transmitted from direct or indirect contact. Direct contact means your dog comes into contact with the fecal matter of an infected dog, generally through the nose or mouth. Since dogs use their senses of smell or taste to explore the world, the transmission of the virus is often swift. Indirect contact means dogs come in contact with clothing, flooring, veterinary equipment, bedding, etc. that have been exposed to an infected dog. There is even some degree of confidence that parvo can remain in ground soil for as long as one year. Fortunately, household bleach is one of the few cleaning products known to kill parvo but of course, bleach must be used very carefully around pets.
Parvo Symptoms in Dogs
It’s important to recognize the symptoms of parvo for what they are and seek emergency medical assistance for your dog immediately if you suspect parvo. Symptoms include:
- Bloody diarrhea (severe)
- Weight Loss
If your dog is experiencing these symptoms, it is best to call your vet right away. Even if it isn’t parvo these symptoms indicate another potentially serious health issue or condition.
Treating Parvo will likely require your pup to stay in your animal hospital’s intensive care unit and in isolation. Your vet may require medications to protect your dog through the worst of the symptoms and even then, it may not be enough.
Your Local Veterinarian in Topeka
If you suspect your dog has Parvo, call our animal hospital Emergency Animal Clinic of Topeka at (785) 272-2926 right away to arrange for emergency care and begin the process of treating your pet immediately. The faster your pet gets treatment for this deadly condition, the better their odds of survival become.