(Parvo Virus In Dogs: Symptoms, Diagnosed, Prevention And It’s Treatment)
Parvo Virus In Dogs: Symptoms, Diagnosed, Prevention And It’s Treatment-Making sure your dog eats nutritious pet food and receives a lot of affection are only two aspects of dog care. Additionally, it entails making sure they’re content, healthy, and safe from frequent illnesses like canine parvovirus. It is a highly infectious illness, often known as parvo, that disturbs the digestive system and devastates a dog’s immune system.
Due to its severity and contagiousness, particularly in young, un-vaccinated puppies, parvo is one of the most well-known canine illnesses. If your dog contracts parvo, they will quickly get ill and have unpleasant symptoms. What you should know about parvo and what you can do to prevent it in your dog are as follows:
What is Canine Parvo Virus (CPV) & All About:
In the late 1970s, when hundreds of pups and young dogs suddenly developed severe gastrointestinal problems, parvo first came to public attention. Pet owners immediately observed how swiftly this new sickness decimated dogs and how infectious it was.
Owners of unvaccinated puppies must take extra precautions since parvo can linger in a contaminated environment for up to five years. It may infect dogs who approach the area even briefly, and these dogs can transfer the sickness to other canines they come into contact with, which is how the illness spread so quickly. The good news is that this disease can now be effectively controlled by vaccines.
The non-enveloped DNA virus known as canine parvovirus (CPV) infects unvaccinated and/or young puppies, causing the extremely infectious viral illness parvo. This virus affects a variety of bodily cells, including lymphocytes, which are a subtype of white blood cell. The gastrointestinal (GI) tract, particularly the small intestines, sustains the most damage as a result of the virus’s bloodstream spread after infection.
This virus has the potential to seriously harm the lining of the small intestine and obstruct the normal absorption of essential nutrients. CPV can potentially result in sepsis, a bloodstream infection that, if untreated promptly and aggressively, can be deadly. Young puppies may potentially experience bone marrow or heart muscle damage as a result of parvo. Any breed or age of dog can be affected by CPV, however some breeds are more susceptible than others, including Rottweilers, American pit bull terriers, American Staffordshire terriers, Doberman pinschers, English Springer spaniels, German shepherds, and Labrador retrievers.
The majority of disinfectants are very ineffective against CPV, and it can persist in the environment for a long time. The main way that CPV spreads between dogs is through contact with infected dog excrement. However, CPV can also be transmitted by coming into indirect touch with things or persons who have come into contact with an infected dog, such as:
- Leashes and collars,
- food and water bowls,
- human hands or clothes,
- kennels and bedding,
- floor surfaces,
- dog parks,
- puppy obedience training are all examples of potential hazards.
Parvo Virus Symptoms:
Parvo symptoms might vary depending on the immunological system of the infected dog. Until they are about 6 weeks old, most young pups will receive protection from their mother’s milk, at which point their own immune systems must take over. Because their immune systems are still growing, puppies between the ages of 6 weeks and 20 weeks are most at risk for a serious parvo infection. CPV symptoms, which may include:
- bloody diarrhoea,
- lack of appetite,
- fever, and low body temperature, usually appear in affected dogs four days after exposure.
- bloating, and discomfort in the abdomen,
- weight loss
It is not unusual for infected dogs to start shedding the parvovirus prior to the onset of symptoms, and the majority of dogs will continue to do so for more than two weeks after the clinical indications have subsided.
How Parvo is Diagnosed And It’s Treatment:
If your dog exhibits any CPV symptoms, take them to the vet right away. Parvo symptoms might resemble those of other GI issues, which can make a diagnosis difficult. A comprehensive veterinary examination, a history of clinical indicators, as well as a number of laboratory testing, all contribute to the diagnosis. Fecal CPV ELISA testing, which is comparable to a human at-home pregnancy test, is the most used diagnostic parvo test.
A veterinarian may conduct this very accurate test in only 15 minutes. Your veterinarian may advise a complete blood count test to examine the levels of white blood cells (WBCs), as CPV can also cause a low WBC count. The greatest indicator of a positive parvo diagnosis is a low WBC count coupled with a positive CPV ELISA faecal test.
There is no treatment to eradicate/ kill the CPV. However, the highest chance of recovery and survival from a CPV infection will be achieved with urgent vigorous supportive treatment and immune system assistance. For optimal nursing care, most diseased dogs will need a lengthy hospital stay. More than 80% of dogs that receive prompt, appropriate care will survive. However, dogs with a poor prognosis for survival include those who do not receive vigorous therapy or those that do not show progress after three days of care. A CPV infection may be treated by:
- Antinausea drugs
- Antibiotics to avoid sepsis, which can be deadly;
- Intravenous (IV) fluids to correct electrolyte imbalances and dehydration brought on by severe fluid loss
- Painkillers to ease any gastrointestinal pain; Plasma or blood transfusions;
- Body temperature control;
- Nutritional therapy, such as a probiotic, to restore gut flora that has been upset;
- Allergy-Immunity chews to enhance immune health
The most reliable and successful method of preventing this potentially fatal infection is vaccination of your puppy. The American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA) regularly evaluates scientific data to find the most effective means of ensuring that your pet is safeguarded from prevalent infectious canine illnesses. It is advised that all pups start a regimen of three vaccines at six weeks old and continue getting them every two to four weeks until they are 16 weeks old.
A combo injection that also protects against canine distemper virus, parainfluenza virus, and canine adenovirus-2 is given in addition to the core immunisation against parvo. To ensure they are sufficiently protected, dogs should then take a booster the next year and then every three years after that. Other advice for preventing parvo includes:
- Avoiding contact with any animal waste, unvaccinated dogs,
- Avoiding public parks, kennels, puppy courses, and other animals until your puppy has finished its immunisation series
- Following a parvo diagnosis, thoroughly disinfecting all surfaces with a 1:30 diluted bleach solution.
- Isolating your CPV-infected dog for at least two weeks after recovery to stop the spread of the illness.
- Maintaining proper hygiene and cleaning up any faeces when out on a stroll.
At the End:
Many canine lives have been devastated by the parvovirus, which prefers pups and young dogs still developing their immune systems. Utilizing our advice and vaccinating your dogs will ensure that they remain healthy, content, and parvo-free.