Parvo in Dogs
What Is Parvo
Parvo is a serious viral disease that can be deadly even if
treatment is given. So, to protect your puppy from contracting
parvo you need to have your puppy vaccinated against this
First, let's look at what Parvo is and what the symptoms are.
Canine Parvovirus is a disease that attacks dividing cells. The
most prominent location for dividing cells in your puppy's body
is the intestinal lining or the lining of the digestive system.
When this disease attacks and kills these cells it causes dogs
and puppies to not be able to absorb nutrients or liquids. Parvo
is seen more in puppies than in adult dogs, but both can catch
the disease. The reason that puppies are more affected is that
they have an immature immune system.
What are the Symptoms
Symptoms of parvo include diarrhea, vomiting and lethargy.
Most dogs when they are infected with parvo stop eating or have a
loss of appetite, diarrhea, high fever, and depression. Their
stool can be very liquid, foul smelling, usually yellow in color,
and contain blood. The secondary symptoms appear as severe
gastrointestinal distress, which includes vomiting and bloody
diarrhea. In the later stages of parvo dehydration, shock, and
many times death. . Parvo in some cases may also attack a dog's
heart causing congestive heart failure. This can occur months or
years after an apparent recovery from the intestinal form of the
How is Parvo Transmitted?
Transmission of parvo is from one dog to another through their
feces. Parvo can live for up to 9 months when the conditions are
right where the feces are found. Parvo can be carried in an adult
dog that shows no outward signs of parvo, but the disease can be
found in their stool. The disease is not an air born type, but
can be transmitted through the sole of your shoe and even birds
may carry this deadly disease into your yard if they have been in
contact with the infected feces.
Once parvo has invaded your yard or your home it is there to
stay if you do not rid the area of the disease. Then, your next
dog can and probably will become infected. There is only one way
to kill the disease from your home, clothing, or back yard. You
will need to use bleach! Soap, water or other household cleansers
for your home or clothing will not kill parvo. You should use a
mixture of 1/3 bleach to 2/3 water and disinfect everything that
the dog has been around including your clothing, his food and
water dish and any bedding that he has used. In your yard, soak
the entire area with the bleach solution. You can also talk with
your veterinarian and purchase a disinfectant such as Parvosan or
Roccal which is designed for treating any areas that have been
exposed to parvo.
What is the Treatment and Prevention for Parvo?
If your dog does become infected with parvo he has a 5o/50
chance of recovery. But, he will more than likely be weak and
easily susceptible to illness.
The best prevention begins when your puppy is 6-8 weeks of
age. You should also keep your puppy away from any other dogs
until he has received his last shot for parvo. The parvo vaccine
is usually included with the distemper vaccine.
All dogs and puppies are susceptible to parvo but there are a
few breeds that seem to be more susceptible than others. These
include Rottweilers, Doberman Pinschers, and other black and tan
breeds. These breeds usually are more prone to contracting this
disease and not recovering.
Without treatment your dog only has a 20% survival rate and
with treatment an 80% survival rate. So, of course, the best
medicine is to prevent the exposure and to vaccinate your puppy
against this deadly disease
This website only provides BASIC information about Parvo. Your
veterinarian is always your best source of health information.
Consult your veterinarian for more information about Parvo and
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