The primary cause of the Parvo infection in puppies is from the urine of sick dogs.
The virus is spread via the fur or feet of sick dogs or onto clothing, shoes, and other items contaminated by infected fecal matter. In fact, direct contact among dogs isn’t necessary to contract the virus.
Are you worried about your puppy? Have you heard of a recent parvo outbreak and you’re worried about the symptoms? The first thing you should know is that infected dogs can get six within 6 to 10 days after exposure.
Parvo is a serious disease that can spread rapidly across the canine population. This post will help you identify risk factors, signs & symptoms, and what to do to save your dog.
Did you know?
Canine parvoviruses are very stable in the climate, unlike most other viruses, and are immune to the effects of sunlight, detergents, alcohol, and several disinfectants.
Even after three months at room temperature, the infective canine Parvovirus was obtained from surfaces contaminated with the dog’s fecal matter.
Early Signs of Parvo in Puppies
The virus starts to be shed in the stool shortly before early signs of Parvo in puppies or dogs develop, and shedding lasts for around ten days.
Puppies are most vulnerable because they have a vast number of quickly dividing cells in their intestines/stomach which is where Parvo targets.
Puppies between the ages of 6 and 20 weeks are at highest risk.
Eighty-five percent of all parvo diseases occurs in puppies under one year of age.
The parvo virus can kill puppies within a few days and is 80% lethal. Signs of parvo in puppies must be treated by a veterinarian right away. These include:
Loss of Appetite
One of the early signs of Parvo in puppies is the loss of appetite, which can occur in puppies that develop Parvo.
You’ll find that now your once extremely food-motivated pup has been less excited about their food.
The virus spreads throughout the body during the early stages of the Parvo infection and begins to destroy many organs, especially the lining of the intestines.
The immune system often activates the body’s first line of protection in reaction to the attack, inducing fever, constant tiredness, and, of course, lack of appetite.
Many dogs catching Parvo have difficulty holding food down and tend to vomit bile due to empty stomachs.
Bile is a dark, foamy, yellow-brownish fluid; or blood, which can come out as coffee-colored vomit.
When your dog is not eating, quickly send it to the veterinarian. To prevent them from being malnourished and dehydrated, they will require a feeding tube and IV fluids.
When Parvo attacks the lining of the intestines they are unable to hold onto vital water and nutrients.
The result if loose stool or diarrhea which increases the risk of severe dehydration.
Parvo may also destroy blood vessels and allow blood to spill through the feces, allowing individual dogs to experience bloody diarrhea.
Sick puppies have lower amounts of energy because the body is operating overtime trying to overcome the illness.
That’s why obtaining sufficient nutrients, electrolytes, and fluids during the healing time is so critical for Parvo-infected dogs.
To make it easier for dogs to regenerate, they help maintain the immune system active and well enough.
Loss of appetite, vomiting, diarrhea all impact negatively and cause infected dogs to lose weight.
Nevertheless, as long as they have adequate nutrients and stay under veterinary experts’ guidance, they should recover.
When they’ve stabilized, most dogs quickly bring their weight back.
Veterinarians usually give them directions for effectively managing a few treatments, including antibiotics and anti-nausea treatment, and help dog owners bring their pets back to health at home.
They will also advise dog owners on re-introducing solid food progressively and briefing them on what their pup can and cannot consume.
Can a puppy get Parvo twice?
A puppy that has survived Parvo builds up an immunity that makes it unlikely he/she will get the disease a second time.
It is possible, however, for the puppy to pick up a different mutated strain of the infection – although that is rare.
Parvo in older dogs
Parvo symptoms are just like the symptoms a puppy would get when infected with Parvo in older dogs.
Due to the lowered immune systems in young dogs, Parvo is more likely to infect a young puppy. Even so, the Parvovirus can still infect older dogs.
In Older Dogs, Symptoms of Parvo
The signs and symptoms of Parvo might include the following:
- A high fever
- Appetite Loss
- Having diarrhea
- Vomiting Over
- The Dehydration
- Watery, yellow stool
- Stool Bloody
Parvo is more common in puppies than in adult dogs, as stated previously, but can still attack older dogs.
Parvo may lead to heart failure, shock, or sudden death if left untreated.
If you notice any signs or symptoms of Parvo in your pet, it is essential to contact a vet as quickly as possible.
In order to ensure a complete recovery, treatment will be required promptly.
If left unchecked, you will find that Parvo has a horrible development, which is why the only way to go is early diagnosis.
There are no particular drugs that can cure it because Parvo is a virus.
The key is supportive therapy, which involves intravenous fluids to stay hydrated, antibiotics to inhibit secondary infections, and antiemetics to reduce vomiting.
It takes a dog a couple of days to recover to the point where they want to eat. Most puppies, however, can not go that long without nutrition, so there should also be some form of nutritional supplementation.
Dehydration or secondary infections are the most relevant Parvo symptoms, so the most significant priority should be to prevent them.
How to Prevent Parvo?
Parvo treatment is a two-fold approach: vaccination with avoidance.
Healthy puppies around six and eight weeks of age should be given Parvo vaccines, with boosters at 12 and 16 weeks. Depending on the dog’s diet and exposure danger, Parvo vaccines can then be performed regularly or every three years.
When exposed to Parvo, vaccinated dogs are somewhat better on the avoidance side than those unvaccinated.
It’s important to avoid places where your unvaccinated pup might come into contact with infected dogs or feces.
Avoid public places (parks, groomer, visit to friends/family, etc.) until your puppy has received the 3rd round of vaccinations.
Top Products for Eliminating Parvo Virus in the Environment
This product can be mopped or sprayed onto floors and is used in veterinary clinics homes, and farms.
Please read instructions before use.
Virkon-S is a broad spectrum veterinary disinfectant that kills 31 different strains and 58 different viruses.
Virex is an all-purpose disinfectant cleaner for use on hard, nonporous surfaces. Meets occupational health & safety bloodborne pathogen standards for hbv and hiv
Avoid bringing the virus inside by removing the urine & feces of other pets in your neighborhood, start disinfecting your shoes, and wash your other dog’s paws if you take them to the dog park.
Ask a Veterinarian About Your Dog’s Symptoms Right Now
If your dog seems okay but you still have some questions about your concerns regarding parvo, you can talk to a veterinarian right now. It’s all done online and it saves you a ton of worry, travel, and extra vet bills.
Get an Instant Medical Opinion
Naturally, if your dog is showing obvious signs of distress/illness, get him/her to the veterinarian asap. If your puppy is vomiting or has diarrhea, he/she needs assistance right away. Never let that linger because your dog will need to be treated for dehydration.
If your dog seem fine but you have a few questions to ask, why not use the Vetster app?
I was scared to hit the “book an appointment” button!
At first I was afraid to press the “schedule an appointment” button because I didn’t know if I would be charged money.
I was relieved when I hit the button because all it did was provide a list of veterinarians in my area. It even lists what each veterinarian charges along with the services they can provide.
Obviously they can’t do a physical checkup. However, they can ask you the kinds of questions that will help them provide useful, medical advice.
Here’s a quick tip:
Go in to Vetster and set up a free account right away. There’s no subscription fee or anything like that. That way, if something really goes wrong, you will be able to pull up a veterinarian for help right away.
If you don’t set up an account ahead of time, you could waste a lot of valuable time trying to get the info in when you need help the most.
I make no secret about not being a veterinarian. That’s why I wanted to share this service with you. You’ve got nothing to lose.
The service will pull veterinarians from your area to choose from. Appointments are done by video calls. It gives you a chance to ask a simple question without the need to get in the car, fill up the gas tank, find a parking spot, and then wait in a room until you can get in.
When you scroll through the list of veterinarians, you will see what they charge. Some are less expensive than others. Most are well under the price you’d pay to walk into an urban veterinarian clinic!!
Get a Medical Opinion Right Now
Just go in and set up your free account. Click the Book Appointment button and scroll through all of the veterinarian options that pop up.
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In dogs, mostly puppies, Parvo is still a very troubling disease. However, with sufficient vaccination and early diagnosis, Parvo is resolved by most dogs.
Do your best to secure your dog better and communicate to your vet if you are worried.
Thank you for reading this post. If you were able to learn something about Parvo in puppies, please take a second to educate others and share.
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