EL PASO- The City of El Paso Animal Services Program is experiencing an increase dogs arriving at the shelter with parvovirus, more commonly known as “parvo.”
Since the start of the month, the shelter has identified an increase in canine parvo.
Parvo is a potentially deadly, but preventable disease that most usually attacks the canine intestinal tract. It is transmitted through the feces and vomit of infected dogs and puppies. The virus can be brought home to your dog on shoes, hands and even car tires.
Parvovirus is contagious to other dogs but is not transmissible to humans or other animals.
Canines most at risk include puppies younger than 4 months of age; immune-compromised dogs; and any dog that has not been fully vaccinated against parvo. The best way to prevent parvo is to vaccinate puppies and dogs against the virus.
Puppies will need several parvo vaccinations to be protected from the virus. Do not take your puppy out to public places until he/she if fully vaccinated. Dogs allowed to roam are more likely to come into contact with the virus.
The initial signs of parvo include loss of appetite, vomiting, dehydration, depression, fever, and diarrhea. Treatment usually includes hospitalization, intravenous fluids, and medications to control vomiting, diarrhea and secondary infections.
To learn more about parvo, contact your pet’s veterinarian.