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CANINE PARVOVIRUS

June 28, 2021

 Canine Parvovirus is a viral disease that affects dogs, being most severe in young puppies. It causes loss of appetite, lethargy and severe vomiting and diarrhoea that can lead to death. We tend to see more cases in the hot summer months but do see it at other times of the year as well.

Parvovirus is extremely contagious and can be transmitted by any person, animal or object that comes into contact with an infected dog or its vomit or diarrhoea. Highly resistant, the virus can live in the environment or on objects for many months. Unvaccinated dogs can contract parvovirus from the streets, or areas where many dogs frequent such as walking paths or dog exercise areas.

Treatment of parvovirus involves aggressive veterinary care with intravenous fluids, antibiotics and drugs to control the vomiting. This kind of treatment is expensive with the average hospital stay being 3-5 days. Sadly, treatment is not always successful in saving your dog’s life.

You can help protect your dog by vaccination. The first vaccine is given at 6-8 weeks of age with boosters given at four-week intervals until the puppy is at least 16 weeks old followed by regular vaccines throughout life. Older dogs that have lapsed with their regular vaccinations or never had a vaccination will require one vaccination.

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