Parvo (Parvovirus)

Categories: Infectious DiseasesMedical ConditionsWellness & Care

What is Parvo?
Parvo, or Parvovirus, is a highly contagious disease that attacks the intestines and can be life-threatening for dogs and puppies. We do consider Parvo cases to be emergencies and you want to bring your dog in as soon as possible for treatment.

What are the symptoms of Parvo?
The most distinct symptom is a particularly foul smelling diarrhea that may have a bloody discharge, along with possible lethargy, vomiting and lack of appetite.  If your dog is exhibiting these symptoms, it is critical that you seek emergency veterinary care immediately.

How do dogs get Parvo?
Parvo is very easily spread through the feces of an infected dog. The virus can survive for months in most any environment, including the bottom of shoes, dog toys, patio furniture, grass, and carpet. The instances of Parvo cases greatly increase when it rains and  the virus can get stirred up on outside surfaces.

What is the treatment for Parvo?
Unfortunately, there is no cure for Parvo as it is a virus that has to run it’s course. However, your veterinarian can provide treatments to stabilize your dog and treat the symptoms, allowing him or her to recover. Treatment, which can include lab testing, fluids, injectable medications, and blood transfusions, can be costly and usually takes 5-7 days of hospitalization.

How can I prevent Parvo?
Ensuring that the Parvo vaccine is a part of your dog’s regular core vaccines is essential. If you have had a pet with Parvo, you will want to take measures to sanitize your environment to prevent the virus from spreading. Remember that the virus can survive, even on inanimate objects, for months; so talk to your veterinarian about ways to disinfect your home and yard.

Questions or Concerns?
Feel free to give us a call of bring your dog in immediately if you believe there is an emergency situation.