Canine parvovirus is an extremely contagious viral infection that first came out "out of the blue" in 1978. A series of epidemics spanned across the United States, Australia, Canada, and several European countries, causing a rattling mortality rate. It was particularly grave in young puppies, and spread quickly at dog shows and in places where dogs were housed together, like kennels and pet stores. There's proof now that parvovirus didn't exist before the 1978 epidemic.
Parvovirus is spread mainly via contact with the feces of a contaminated animal. A susceptible dog can be infected by ingesting less than a thousandth ofa gram of infected fecal material. The virus could also be carried on the hair and feet of infected dogs, and on the clothing and shoes of people who manage them. It can pollute cages and other objects too.
Symptoms come along inside a three to twelve day period and include fever, vomiting, pale gums, and bloody diarrhea. The onset of the disease is sudden and might be preceded by listlessness and loss of appetite. Death may occur in dogs of all ages, though it's more likely in young pups.
Success in treatment depends on early and precise diagnosis made by a vet, as death can happen within 2 to 4
When this lethal virus swept the country, scientists immediately started to formulate vaccines. Nowadays, thanks to the development of an effective vaccine, parvovirus is in check. However, it's vital that puppies be immunized at the proper time. A lot of pups are exposed and most susceptible to the virus at a time while they have too few maternal anti-bodies to protect them but too many to allow for a successful vaccination. Decisions about how soon and how often to vaccinate, thence, should be made on an individual basis by the vet in charge of the dog.
The virus causing this disease is among the most hardy and resistant ever known. It can thrive on many surfaces at room temperature and stay infectious for twelve months or longer. It is also resistant to most antimicrobials. You can help bring down contamination, though, by cleaning kennels or other areas the dog frequents using a solution of chlorine bleach.