We have very sadly seen a couple of cases of canine parvovirus in practice recently. Canine parvovirus causes dogs to become weak and dehydrated and can be fatal. Symptoms can include really nasty-smelling diarrhoea with blood in it, vomiting, lethargy, fever and collapse. The virus is very contagious and is transmitted from contact with contaminated bodily fluids. It can survive in the environment outside the body for up to six months, which means that dog walking areas can harbour the virus and we can even inadvertently spread the virus on our shoes, clothes and even hands. Areas of biggest spread are where there are high populations of unvaccinated dogs or dogs whose vaccinations have lapsed. Puppies that contract parvovirus can become especially poorly very quickly as they become very weak and their immune system has to work extra hard to help them survive.
Vaccination is the best prevention against parvovirus. Please do ensure puppies have their full puppy course of vaccinations and that older dogs keep up with their annual boosters. Whilst we can give supportive care to dogs suffering from parvovirus, sadly there is no immediate cure and for some the virus will prove fatal.
Should you suspect your dog has parvovirus, please contact us immediately. As the virus is so infectious, we will advise you what you need to do when you bring your dog in to prevent other dogs coming in to contact with the virus.
Please vaccinate to keep safe!