With a mortality rate of about 90% if not treated, it is important that dog owners take parvo seriously. Parvo is a very serious infection that is extremely contagious. If your dog is afflicted with it, you must take him to the vet immediately.
Puppies are most vulnerable to this disease. As they grow older, their chances of getting parvo significantly decrease. Dogs from six weeks to six months form the majority of cases of parvo.
In order to prevent parvo, puppies should be vaccinated at regular intervals between six and twelve weeks of age. After vaccinations are completed, it is still possible for them to get this disease, although not likely.
Symptoms of parvo
So, how do you know when your puppy is suffering from parvo?
You will notice that he is having terrible, bloody diarrhea, develop a fever and vomiting. You may also notice an unhealthy weight loss.
Parvo can also lead to further complications as your dog’s immune system is weaken significantly.
What must you do when your dog gets parvo
Give your puppy plenty of water. He has loss much body fluid from vomiting and diarrhea. Additionally, parvo interferes with the body’s water and nutrients absorption abilities.
When you notice your dog exhibiting the parvo symptoms, take him to the vet immediately for proper treatment. Your dog may need to be quarantined as parvo is a viral infection that can be spread to other dogs.
How is parvo spread
Parvo can be spread fairly easily. When infected dogs defecate, there is an extremely high concentration of the virus in their faces. A healthy puppy can contract the disease simply by sniffing at it.
In fact, parvo is so contagious that if you have stepped on some parvo-riddled feces, your healthy puppy can get infected simply by sniffing at your shoes.
Parvo is also known to have survived for up to a year within the soil. So, if your parvo infected dog defecates, ensure that the feces is properly cleaned up and you must also bleach the spot. Bleaching will kill off the parvo.
What breeds of dogs are more susceptible to parvo
Some breeds are more susceptible to parvo than others. These breeds are Pit Bulls, German Shepherds, Labradors, Dobermans and Rottweilers.
It is wise to take extra precautions if you own one or more of these breeds. Make sure that they are properly vaccinated against parvo. Additionally, do not let them interact with other dogs until a couple of weeks after their final shot.
To ensure that they are more fully protected, it may be a good idea to consider giving them additional shots. Thereafter, they should be receiving booster shots once every three years. You may want to consider doing this even with less vulnerable breeds.