Canine Parvovirus

July 20, 2020

Veterinarians are seeing an alarming increase in the number of cases of the canine parvovirus.

Nationally, Blue Pearl pet hospitals report a 70 percent increase of the virus compared to statistics collected the previous five years.

While an exact reason for the spike has yet to be determined, veterinarians suspect the coronavirus pandemic can shoulder some of the blame.

“If people are staying home and have strict stay at home orders, probably vet visits aren’t the first thing on their minds,” said Dr. Lenore Bacek with Blue Pearl. “Financially, some people took a large hit to their normal finances during this time and routine vaccines weren’t a priority.”

She added that people may be taking their newly adopted puppies to dog parks before they are fully vaccinated.

Parvovirus is highly contagious because it can live on surfaces like grass or blankets for months and years.

“Just assume it’s in the environment and don’t take your puppy somewhere other dogs have been,” Dr. Bacek said.

Symptoms of the virus include vomiting and diarrhea, fever, abdominal pain, decreased appetite, weakness and weight loss.

Dogs can’t pass the virus to humans. However, the increase of parvovirus cases could mean other important vaccines are being neglected.

“We worry if they are not getting parvo vaccines, are we missing things like rabies vaccines, which could have a public health implication?” Dr. Bacek said.

Puppies are most at risk, but the virus can also impact adult dogs. Veterinarians recommend adults receive a booster vaccine every three years.

If a dog falls ill, they can face expensive treatment.

“With aggressive treatment, hospitalization, IV fluid therapy, supportive care, the survival rate is high, close to 90 percent,” Dr. Bacek said.

However, the financial and emotional toll of a dog getting sick can be avoided with proper vaccines.

“We want to make sure as the first wave continues and second waves comes, that vets are seen as an important factor in public health,” Dr. Bacek said.

  • Most Recent News

    Firefighters battling California wildfires visited by Kerith the therapy dog

    October 29, 2020

    Battling wildfires can take an emotional and physical toll on firefighters, but a two-year-old golden retriever has come to rescue, relieving stress and providing comfort to firefighters on the front lines. Kerith is a certified crisis response therapy animal through a nonprofit organization, Pet Partners. Kerith and her handler, Heidi Carman, started volunteering at MarinHealth […]

    Read more

    Big Dogs Need Owners

    October 9, 2020

    When the shutdown orders took full effect, it became nearly impossible to find a small dog available for adoption as Southlanders sought furry companions. In many Southland shelters, only larger breeds remained available for adoption. Now Los Angeles Animal Service is touting the joys of big dogs while offering discounted adoption fees for larger breeds […]

    Read more

    Service Dog Walkathon

    October 9, 2020

    On Saturday, October 3, hundreds of walkers from across 15 states joined the path to bettering the world for children with autism and their families as part of BluePath Service Dogs’ fourth annual walkathon. The family-friendly fundraiser – this year held virtually – raised more than $120,000 to further BluePath’s mission of providing autism service […]

    Read more

    Service Dog In The Marching Band

    October 9, 2020

    In a year that is anything but normal, the Jones College Maroon Typhoon Marching Band has welcomed its first known service dog member this fall. Laurie, a 3-year-old golden retriever, is baritone saxophone player Sara-Beth McKellar’s service dog. The Vicksburg native was diagnosed with epilepsy as a sophomore in high school after her first seizure. […]

    Read more

    Church Blesses Animals

    October 9, 2020

    St. Mary’s Church of the Immaculate Conception in Port Jervis hosted a special outdoor service last Sunday afternoon to bless the community’s pets, animals and other living creatures. In keeping with current pandemic rules, pet owners wore masks, remained distant, and took part in praying for dogs, cats, turtles, and other pets and animals around […]

    Read more

    Police Welcomes New Canine

    October 9, 2020

    Young Kingston Police service dog Bask may look small, but his handler says his training and energy are proving that he’s up to fill the shoes of his predecessor. “I think he’s going to be a great little dog,” Const. Jeff Dickson said, looking down at his new partner. A partner that, wearing the right […]

    Read more

    Dog Park For Travelers

    October 9, 2020

    St. Petersburg is widely recognized as a dog-friendly city, and St. Pete-Clearwater International Airport is making sure its four-legged visitors and their humans feel welcome by rolling out the artificial turf carpet. With the completion of the airport’s parking and roadway project – part of a series of multi-million dollar improvements at the airport over the […]

    Read more

    Service Dog Helps Firefighters

    October 9, 2020

    Firefighters battling the Archie Creek and Thielsen fires have had some long, exhausting days. But for some, their troubles seemed to melt away once they got back to camp. Why? Meet Ralph Colombo. He hauls oversize loads. And joining Ralph is his service dog, Cowboy – the morale boosting, firefighting puppy. “He just keeps my […]

    Read more

    Pet Therapy Program

    October 9, 2020

    Saturday, October 10 is World Mental Health Day, which this year has a new sense of urgency for many. Covid-19 has taken a mental and emotional toll on healthcare workers across the U.S but there is a program boosting the spirits of doctors and nurses on the frontlines. At UC Irvine Medical Center in Southern […]

    Read more

    A Service Dogs Place

    October 9, 2020

    A new Pineville nonprofit that helps people with disabilities obtain service dogs has made its first match. The Saber Life Foundation was started in March by Danea Key and her husband Joel. They provide people with trained service dogs, paying 51 percent of the cost, with the client paying the other 49 percent. Service dogs […]

    Read more

    More Recent News