Pet Care Tips from Greenbrier Veterinary Hospital
PARVO VIRUS FACTS
1. Contagious to dogs only -- not to cats or people
2. Signs include: · vomiting · fever · bloody diarrhea with a very foul odor
3. The virus sometimes may attack the heart muscle causing myocarditis (inflammation of the heart muscle). This may occur for up to three to six weeks after apparent recovery from the intestinal form of the disease. This "heart" form is always fatal.
4. The younger the dog, the greater the chance it will NOT recover
5. Dogs that recover from parvo are often weak, making them even more susceptible to other disease, such as distemper.
6. The virus is transmitted through the feces on an infected dog. It can be carried on the dog's hair and feet as well as live on contaminated rugs, bedding, shoes and other objects.
7. The most effective disinfectant is 4 ounces of bleach in one gallon of water.
8. Dogs that recover from parvo continue to spread the virus in their feces for a month or longer. They are considered carriers.
9. Dogs remain highly susceptible to parvo until two weeks after their first injection of their immunization SERIES.
10. Death from parvo virus may result from:
· Dehydration · Overwhelming bacterial infection from the pet's lowered resistance · Blood loss from intestinal bleeding · Heart attack from the invasion of the heart muscle by the virus
11. Treatment is aimed at maintaining the normal body composition and preventing secondary bacterial infections. We have NO CURE for any animal virus, just as there is no cure any human virus.
12. The body normally is about 80% water. Life is NOT possible when 12-15% of the normal body fluids are lost. In parvo virus, the pet often becomes "dehydrated" from the vomiting, diarrhea, and inability to consume fluids. This is the reason fluid therapy is so very important.