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Summer has Ended…but Parvovirus Hasn’t!

Posted 11.05.19 by Raelyn Pirtle, DVM

If you’re a pet owner, chances are you’ve at least heard of parvovirus, or “parvo” for short. Parvo is a highly contagious virus that primarily affects puppies. The virus is usually spread by contact with infected feces; however, it can also be spread through indirect contact with infected surfaces such as our shoes, toys, and kennels. Part of the reason parvo is so contagious is because it is so widespread in the environment and very difficult to eliminate. Often, it remains in the environment for at least a year.

Parvo most commonly causes severe vomiting, diarrhea, lack of appetite, and sometimes fever. Many puppies do not survive this terrible illness due to the severe dehydration it causes. There is no specific treatment for parvo; only intensive supportive care in the hospital isolation ward with intravenous fluids and medications such as anti-nausea, anti-diarrheal, and antibiotics. Sometimes parvo patients pass away despite all of our best treatments.

The best way to prevent infection is vaccination! Parvo can affect any puppy, but those that are unvaccinated are at highest risk. This is why vaccinating your puppy is SO important! Your puppy will need several vaccine boosters to be considered fully vaccinated. It is also important to not let your puppy around areas like dog parks or any dogs with unknown vaccine history until they are finished with their puppy vaccine series (usually around 16 weeks of age).

Parvovirus is a deadly disease and can be very expensive to treat, but with proper puppy vaccinations, it can be almost entirely prevented. We have a great puppy package for $99 that includes all of your puppy’s needed vaccines and dewormings. Call us today to get your pup scheduled!

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