Canine Parvovirus - What you should know
Hannah wants you to be aware of Canine
so that your newly adopted puppy will be protected.
Please be aware that young puppies are very susceptible to
Parvovirus – a highly contagious and deadly viral illness. All of our puppies
are given vaccinations appropriate to their age and kept in isolation. Puppies do not have full immunity from this disease until
they receive their third vaccination. Many puppies are adopted before they
are old enough to receive their third shot. For this reason, it is very
important that you do not take your new puppy to places where he/she could be
exposed to Parvovirus, i.e., public parks, pet stores, or anywhere they may
be exposed to other dogs or puppies that may not be current on vaccinations.
Also, be sure your puppy gets vaccinated on schedule. Your vet will advise
you when your pet should get its rabies vaccine.
Canine Parvovirus (CPV) is the most dangerous and contagious
virus that affects unprotected dogs. The Parvo vaccine has helped control its spread
and CPV infection is now considered most threatening to puppies between the
time of weaning and six months of age. Adult dogs can also contract the
virus, although it's relatively uncommon. All breeds of dogs can be infected,
but Rottweilers and Doberman Pinschers are more susceptible and have less
chance of recovering. Other animals and humans can carry the disease to your
dog. Dogs who become infected have a 50-50 chance of survival. If they
survive the first four days they will usually recover rapidly and become
immune to the virus for life. Most puppies will die without medical
The source of CPV infection is fecal waste from infected dogs.
It has been diagnosed anywhere groups of dogs are found: dog shows, obedience
trials, breeding and boarding kennels, pet shops, animal shelters, parks, and
playgrounds. Dogs that spend their time confined to a house or yard and are
not in contact with other dogs have much less chance of exposure to CPV. It's
easily transmitted via the hair or feet of infected dogs, and also by
contaminated objects such as cages or shoes. CPV is hardy and can remain in
feces-contaminated ground for five months or more if conditions are
favorable. Although most disinfectants cannot kill it, chlorine bleach is
quite effective. Parvovirus has an incubation period of five to fourteen
days. Dogs will act like they are in extreme pain. Early symptoms are
depression, loss of appetite, vomiting, high fever, and severe diarrhea.
Feces can be either grayish or fluid and bloody. Rapid dehydration is a
danger and dogs may continue to vomit and have diarrhea until they die,
usually three days after onset of symptoms. Others may recover without
In the early stages of Parvo, your puppy will become very listless and get a
blank look on his face. His eyes will appear glassy. He will be tired, not
play and may not eat or drink. This is when you need to catch Parvo, before the puppy
starts to throw up or get diarrhea. Once these symptoms appear the lining of
the intestines may be starting to break down. Time is of the essence, so if
you notice any of these signs, don’t wait, err on the side of being too
cautious, it may save your puppy’s life.
At the Veterinarian - the Snap Test
Why is the Snap Test so important?
IS VERY TIME SENSITIVE! Early treatment is crucial! A fecal float takes
24-48 hours to come back with a result... that is enough time to kill your
puppy. A Snap Test takes 10 minutes. With a Snap Test you can start treating
your pup in 15 minutes. With a float, your pup is all but dead by the time
the results come back.
There has been success in treating Parvovirus with Tamiflu. It
does NOT cure it, but it is effective nonetheless. Tamiflu renders the
bacteria (which is what does the actual damage) that travels with this virus,
useless. This then stops it from leaving the digestive tract and harming