Opinion

It’s wet, it’ll be warm – and hello to Parvo (again)

by
September 15, 2016

In the past couple of weeks I have been discussing the high chance of our having another outbreak of Parvo disease in dogs.

This usually occurs every three to five years in spring when we’ve had a wet winter – Parvovirus LOVES warm, moist conditions.

And it loves the fact owners forget what a truly horrible disease it is, and between outbreaks forget to vaccinate their pups or try to save money by not vaccinating.

As the virus also lives in the ground for years it is a no-brainer why these outbreaks occur.

Just FYI to clear up some serious misconceptions (for anyone who has seen the page):

1. Canine Parvovirus does NOT spread to humans.

2. Vaccinations ARE important – because they stop your dog contracting horrific diseases which can kill them.

This is a topic I feel very passionate about.

It’s a complete mystery to me how anyone who has heard of whooping cough killing babies, tetanus killing horses or Parvo disease killing puppies can be anti-vaccination.

This blog concentrates on Parvovirus in dogs.

However vaccinations in general have a huge positive effect on the health of all animals, including humans.

The amount of misinformation you can find regarding this topic is unbelievable, and mostly counterproductive to the wellbeing of us all.

Anyway, back to this week’s topic – the devastating Parvovirus in dogs.

This virus causes a huge amount of suffering, as well as a cruel and excruciating death – and it is TOTALLY PREVENTABLE!

The symptoms are vomiting and diarrhoea (often bloody), dehydration and a very sick dog once the disease takes hold.

The immune system is affected too.

Bits of bowel will often come out the back end too (seriously yuck!) as the virus destroys the gut wall.

Suffering can be immense and there is no guarantee of successful treatment – many will still die with the best treatment – that is NOT an exaggeration, this disease is truly horrific.

I have mentioned that it’s TOTALLY preventable haven’t I?

I’m hoping all of you who are dog owners reading this blog check your dog is fully vaccinated (not just microchipped, wormed, de-sexed etc).

And if you know your pup is immunised, don’t wait until they get sick – vaccinate NOW. Also, check with any friends who have unvaccinated puppies and dogs and advise them to have them vaccinated – or get them to read this blog or talk to their vet (all vets have horror stories about Parvo).

Vets find it extremely frustrating and depressing when we see this disease.

Treating it is not simple.

It takes a huge amount of time as the pup needs to be quarantined, has no guarantee of success and is extremely expensive.

Hence, in my experience, most pups with Parvo are euthanased.

And I now feel treating some of the really bad ones may not be an humane option – so, AVOID the heartbreak for you and agony for your pup and vaccinate.

A final word – and I haven’t brought this up for a while – if you can’t afford to vaccinate your puppy, you can’t afford to own a dog.

Please go and get a pet rock!

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